L’Atelier 1664

Now that summer finally feels just around the corner, what better place to relax with friends in Paris than at L’Atelier 1664, a pop-up space housed in a former private mansion.

There’s a lot of beer, yes, but that’s not the only thing on the menu. There’s food, for a start, as well as workshops, conferences and a co-working space. Take a selfie in the beer garden, dive in the ball pit, or indulge your inner Frenchie and partake in a game of pétanque.

At 47 rue du Cardinal Lemoine, until 31 May.

Zazza – The Best Pizza in Paris

54750DC9-6F43-41FB-8740-A02C9BA4D31DLast week I went to Italian restaurant Zazza, which is hands down the best pizza in Paris. Perhaps even the world.

With a pizza oven from Florence, ingredients imported from Italy and dishes whipped up by Italian chefs, this place is as authentic as it gets. It’s a little bit pricey, but the food is sensational, so well worth it in my opinion.

I went with a friend and we each had a spritz (10), shared two pizzas—the Affumicata (15) and the Figata (21)—and a tiramisu (8), all washed down with a limoncello (5).

My only regret was not being able to eat a whole tiramisu on my own….

ZAZZA – Bistro Italien
18 rue du Faubourg Poissonnière
75010 Paris
Metro: Grands Boulevards, Bonne Nouvelle

Spaghetti ice cream at Spaghettina


Summer is finally here in Paris, which pretty much means any excuse for ice cream… Sunday was a sweltering 32 degrees when I stumbled across Spaghettina, an ice cream shop that serves up the cold stuff in the shape of spaghetti.

Spaghettina has brought this German spaghetti-shaped concept (invented by Dario Fontanella in 1969 in Mannheim) to the French capital, to a little shop in the 10th arrondissement.

You opt for a cone or pot, then choose your ice cream flavour–so far, so normal. And that’s where things start to get interesting. A layer of cream lines your pot or cone, your scoop of ice cream is fed into a machine and comes out like spaghetti, and you choose a sauce and a topping. I opted for praline ice cream, caramel sauce and white chocolate shavings; my friend went for something more fruity and topped with raspberries, and we ate sat by the canal.

I’d highly recommend this place–great staff, great ice cream and a novel concept. Price wise it gets a gold star too–my ice cream spaghetti cost less than €5.

61 rue de Lancy
75010 Paris
Metro: Jacques Bonsergent

Seafood and Spritz at Polpo


If you’re looking for somewhere a bit different to go for dinner or drinks, look no further than Polpo, a seafood brasserie.

This bar-restaurant is in fact a 600m2 barge on the banks of the Seine in the Parisian suburb of Levallois-Perret. You might have to walk along the side of a busy road to get to the place, but once inside, the relaxed vibe makes you feel as though you are on holiday.

Food options include oysters, lobster and mussels (I had the fish and chips, since I’m a Brit), although there are pasta and steak options available if seafood doesn’t float your boat. Dessert is delectable–I had a chocolate mousse to die for.

When it comes to drinks, I’d recommend going for Happy Hour, from 5-8pm, when a spritz is €5.

47 quai Charles Pasqua
92300 Levallois Perret
Metro Pont de Levallois (Line 3)

Chimney cake and cappuccinos


The Marais district of Paris is known for its cool and quirky shops, bars and eateries, and  Alma the Chimney Cake Factory is a perfect example of the latter.

This cool cafe serves great coffee and sweet and savoury versions of Hungarian treat kurtos kalacs, aka chimney cake.

I had the soup and a mini herb chimney cake (because I’d been to a spinning class and had developed notions of becoming a fitness fanatic and starting a healthy eating regime), and my friend had a tomato, mozzarella and pesto chimney cone. We sat on the table you have to climb a ladder to reach, which is not for the fainthearted but affords a great view of the chimney cakes being prepared and a sense of superiority as you look down on people.

We’ll definitely be back to sample the sweet versions–options include cinnamon, almonds or praline.

And apparently you can make chimney cakes at home, so I might just have to give it a go.

Alma the Chimney Cake Factory
59 boulevard Beaumarchais
75003 Paris

Coffee & cake at Merci

img_5830There’s no shortage of places to go for coffee and cake in Paris, but the Used Book Cafe at the Merci concept store is one of my favourites.

Located at 111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, it’s the perfect place to refuel after a Saturday spent (window) shopping in the Marais.

I opted for a cappuccino and a slice of chocolate cake, but if you’re feeling flush there’s an organic salmon and cream cheese bagel on the menu for 18–for that price it can only be fabulous.

Merci was set up in 2009 by the founders of children’s clothing label Bonpoint, who spotted a gap in the market for a place that combines fashion, design, household goods and refreshments. Each year the company contributes to a foundation that funds educational projects and development in south-west Madagascar.