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Secret of Paris by Little Brown Pen

While I get settled in our apartment in Paris I’ve asked a few friends to do guest posts on their favorite “secret spots” in Paris. Today we have Nichole from Little Brown Pen If you haven’t seen Nichole’s beautiful Paris inspired photography and prints definitely check it out.

Cafe Du Centre, Paris

Cafe du Centre , Paris

Cafe du Centre, Paris

Rue Montorgueil, Sunset

Hi all. Nichole here from Little Brown Pen, and I’m here to talk Paris while Jordan settles in Paris. She asked me to share a special spot, and I knew without question my choice: Cafe du Centre on Rue Montorgueil.

Rue Montorgueil is my favorite street in Paris. It’s best to go hungry, and never, ever when on a diet.

Fromageries filled with every good thing that ever came in a rind, patisseries with row after row of pastry art, boulangeries with lines around the block (if you see one, just get on it), and boucheries with rotisserie chickens and potatoes made crispy from the drippings. It’s a foodie’s dream. And all of these sumptuous shops are in a convenient row on a gently curved, charming cobblestone street.

It’s the Paris I imagine Julia Child fell in love with.

This concentration of Parisian delights is interspersed with a handful of restaurants, most of which are filled to the brim with sated shoppers enjoying an espresso or beer. It’s near impossible to walk down Rue Montorgueil and not want to join in on the lounging, sipping and people watching.

My favorite restaurant is Cafe du Centre. I’ll admit I was initially drawn to this restaurant because of the pretty turquoise and maroon chairs, but have since come to love the hospitality of the staff. Everyone is always smiling, helpful and willing to put up with my Kindergarten French.

On my last visit, I sat for hours with a glass of wine and a friend – perfection.

We’re heading back to Paris in a few weeks, and I’m hoping I can lure Jordan down from Montmartre to experience Rue Montorgueil and Cafe du Centre. I don’t think I’ll have to work too hard to convince her.

PS. If you’re ever in front of Cafe du Centre at sunset, stop what you’re doing, walk to the middle of the street and look west. The way the setting sun illuminates the cobblestone streets should not be missed.

  1. Marie (Food Nouveau)

    February 1, 2011

    How nice to read Nichole's favorite spot in Paris is the rue Montorgueuil! It's mine too, I used to live right around the corner and I just loved to shop on this street (although the fish seller is one of the most expensive in Paris), eat one of the Stroher's fabulous éclairs, enjoy Eric Kayser's bread, or walk down the street to go lounge on Les Halles green grass. My favorite café on Montorgueil is Le Rocher de Cancale (corner of Grenata), located in a really old historic building, it's always full of locals. The food is great, the decor fabulous, the staff is always the same and the café is located on the "right side" of Montorgueil, that is the one that gets more sun. I especially loved to go get breakfast on the heated terrace in the heart of winter. One last mention for Little Italy, the buzzing and raucous italian restaurant towards boul. Réaumur. You have to go there at least once, it's noisy, tables cannot be more close one to the other, service is lightning fast, pasta is authentic is delicious. Each and every one of the shops and restaurants on Montorgueil are worth your attention!

    I absolutely know what Nichole means when she says she hopes to get Jordan down from Montmartre to enjoy Montorgueil! My friends in Paris all live in Montmartre, they love their neighborhood and I have a really hard time to convince them to come down to the 2nd! Although I've also lived in Montmartre, my heart is in Montorgueil and this is where I always want to go back.

  2. Lost In Cheeseland

    February 1, 2011

    One of my favorite streets in Paris, for sure. Also the street where Nichole and I (and Anne, of Prêt à Voyager) shared our first drink!

    I highly recommend Le Loup Blanc which is off on one of the side streets and further down, Caldo Freddo – THE best pizza in town, by far.

  3. Molly from OneKindWord

    February 1, 2011

    I am putting 'Cafe du Centre at sunset' on my list of what do to when I go to Paris (someday!).

  4. RLG

    February 1, 2011

    Nichole, you're killing me.
    The food in Paris is all I daydream about. xoxo

  5. mn

    February 1, 2011

    Oh my, on my last visit I stayed in an apartment actually on the Rue Montorgeuil. Had no idea really what kind of heaven was in store for me!
    I sampled almond croissants and chaussons pommes from the many bakeries & patisseries right outside my doorstep daily. We ate a lovely dinner at Cafe du Centre and agreed it was one of the best, most relaxed we'd had. I don't want to stay anywhere else now!

  6. RosalieCorinne

    February 1, 2011

    What lovely ideas! I'll be in paris from 2/27-3/6 and will be sure to stop by Cafe du Centre. Merci!

  7. Tracy

    February 2, 2011

    divine. envious.

  8. .:mo:.

    February 7, 2011

    Love it

  9. Kitchen-Dreams

    February 7, 2011

    I am loving all this Paris talk. I will be in Paris in June and am looking for an apt. for a week. What area would I search in to find one near rue Montorgueuil or Montmartre? The areas sound magical!

  10. marj

    March 18, 2011

    i just love the beauty of Paris. i wish i could go there someday!

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