Kir-Royal

What is ‘Kir’?

Kir is a popular French cocktail made of blackcurrant liquor crème and white wine. This practice started about 100 years ago and was originally used to enhance the flavor of lesser wines such as Bourgogne Aligoté or Chablis and it is still used today by young people whose parents still make the ‘crème de cassis’ themselves. There are various variations for the blackcurrant such as peach, raspberry, blueberry and others, but the blackcurrant has and still remains as the leader for Kir. When done with Peach it is mixed with RoséKir Lyonnais’, with cider it is ‘Kir Breton’ and finally ‘Kir Royale’ is with Champagne.

I spoke with a Frenchman who explained to me how the ‘crème de cassis’ is made:

First the blackcurrant with red wine from North Africa with the highest amount of alcohol possible about 15% and the least expensive, you let it marinate for 3 days and then you “press” it and then you filter it with a white cotton “torchon” to let get as much juice as possible. Add “sucre cristal” which is used for ‘confiture’ and you heat it in a large casserole until it starts boiling and then you remove it as soon as it starts boiling and then you let it cool and then add ‘alcohol medical’ 90% and bottle it and it’s done!

It keeps for about 6 months but there have been cases where people drink it after a year or more without any harmful side-effects.

If you don’t want to do all this work, you can buy it ready-to-drink at your local liquor store or supermarket, but it doesn’t taste as good, or as strong.

I recommend ‘Kir’ for people who do not like the taste of wine and wish to have the taste of a sweet cocktail while still enjoying wine with friends.

By: Yessika Mármol

pinotboutique

The Art of Food & Wine Pairing

A great wine pair is something that will feel like heaven in your mouth as soon as you try it, it is a combination you should never forget! That is why when Madame Josee from ‘Le Musée du Vin’ asked us to think of an important process in the World of Wine to discuss with the class, we thought long and hard about what would be an interesting subject; so we thought outside of the box and decided to talk about the most important process of all – the actual taste process and pairings!

It is hard to pair food with a nice bottle of red wine, as you probably don’t even want to eat anything not to ‘mess with the taste’, but if you pair it with the right food then you will actually be enhancing the taste of the wine instead of overpowering or altering it. During our presentation we will show you how the tongue and nose work together to develop the taste you perceive, how to identify your personal taste profile and most importantly, how to match food and wine appropriately.

pairing-red-wine-and-food

The modern “art” of food pairings is a relatively recent phenomenon, fostering an industry of books and media with guidelines for pairings of particular foods and wine. In the restaurant industry, sommeliers are often present to make food pairing recommendations for the guest. The main concept behind pairings is that certain elements (such as texture and flavor) in both food and wine interact with each other, and thus finding the right combination of these elements will make the entire dining experience more enjoyable. However, taste and enjoyment are very subjective and what may be a “textbook perfect” pairing for one taster could be less enjoyable to another.

While a perfect balance where both food and wine are equally enhanced is theoretically possible, typically a pairing will have a more enhancing influence on one or the other. Master Sommelier Evan Goldstein notes that food and wine pairing is like two people having a conversation: “One must listen while the other speaks or the result is a muddle”. This means either the food or the wine will be the dominant focus of the pairing, with the other serving as a complement to enhance the enjoyment of the first. In regards to weight and intensity, if the focus of the pairing is the wine then a more ideal balance will be a food that is slightly lighter in weight to where it will not compete for attention with the wine but not too light to where it is completely overwhelmed. If the focus of the pairing is to highlight a dish then the same thought would apply in pairing a wine.

After considering weight, pairing the flavors and texture can be dealt with using one of two main strategies — complement or contrast.

The first strategy tries to bring wine together with dishes that complement each other such as an earthy, Burgundian Pinot Noir with an earthy, mushroom dish.

winepairguide

The second strategy operates under the truism that “opposites attract” and brings together food and wine that have contrasting traits such as a crisp, acidic Sauvignon blanc and a fish with a creamy lemon sauce. The crisp acidity of the wine serves as a contrast that can cut through the creaminess of the sauce and give a different, refreshing sensation for the palate as opposed to what a complementary pairing, such as a creamy, buttery Chardonnay, would bring.

When food and wine are experienced together, the combination changes how we perceive the original taste of the individual item. If you pair a mildly sweet wine with a very sweet dessert, the wine will taste as if it has lost some of its sweetness, it may even taste sour. This could be called ‘taste absorption’ (the food has absorbed the sweetness of the wine and our perception of that sweet taste is reduced). Spicy food, for example, will increase our perception of alcohol in wine. That is ‘taste magnification’. The possibilities are illustrated in the following Balancing Chart.

If a flavor balances another flavor, it means it counteracts or offsets that flavor to achieve an even more harmonious taste.

For example, spice balances sweet and sweet balances spice. Or if you have a dish that’s too spicy, you can also balance the heat with something sweet . So if you ever over-spice a curry or sauce, just add a bit of your preferred sweetener to neutralize the heat.

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Flavors can also enhance each other. If you look at the ‘Flavor Star’, you see that salty enhances sweet and vice versa. This is why there are sea salt caramels or sea salt chocolate chip cookies. That light addition of saltiness actually amplifies the sweetness of those caramels and cookies.

Why Not Chocolate and Red Wine!?

Despite the common misconception that red wine and chocolate are best friends, this pairing is actually difficult to pull off. The bitter flavors in the chocolate multiply with bitter tannins in the wine, which makes the entire pairing taste too bitter.

The Tongue and Taste

While the tongue’s muscles guide food between the teeth and shape it so that it’s digestible, the peripheral sense organ is perhaps better known for its role in the perception of taste. The tongue not only detects gustatory (taste) sensations, but also helps sense the tactile, thermal and even painful stimuli that give food its flavor.

Most people mistake the bumpy structures that cover the tongue’s surface for taste buds. These are actually papillae: goblet-shaped elevations that sometimes contain taste buds and help create friction between the tongue and food. Taste buds are smaller structures, tucked away in the folds between papillae. Every taste bud is made up of basal and supporting cells that help maintain about 50 gustatory receptor cells. These specialized receptors are stimulated by the chemical makeup of solutions. They respond to several primary tastes: sweet, salty, bitter, sour, umami (savory) and fat, which some scientists claim might be a sixth taste. When a stimulus activates a gustatory cell, the receptor will synapse with neurons and send an electrical impulse to the gustatory region of the cerebral cortex. The brain interprets the sensation as taste.

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Each gustatory receptor cell has a long, spindle-like protrusion called a gustatory hair that comes into contact with the outside environment. The hair extends from a small opening, or taste pore, and mingles with molecules of food introduced by saliva. The saliva solution contains digestive enzymes that help break down foods chemically. Saliva is secreted by three major salivary glands — the parotidsubmandibularand sublingual glands — as well as other small salivary glands contained within the tongue and mouth.

Aside from the tongue’s ability to detect gustatory stimuli, it also perceives temperature and the complex tactile sensations that food scientists call mouth feel. The tongue, along with the rest of the mouth, helps determine a food’s texture, oiliness, chewiness, viscosity and density.

 

PERFECT PAIRINGS

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Chefs use the concept of taste balance with food. The same rules apply to wine, but it’s also important to not overshadow the wine (especially if it’s expensive!). Keep the following tips in mind when having wine with food.

  • Having Salad? Your Wine Should have Higher Acidity
  • The Wine Should Match the Color of The Meat
  • Match Earthy Wines with Earthy Foods
  • Neutralize High Tannin Wines with Rich Meaty Foods
  • For Dessert, The Wine Should be Sweeter
  • White wines tend to pair better with lighter foods such as green veggies and fish
  • Keep clear of red wine and fish for the most part unless it’s a rich not-so-fishy fish
  • Sparkling wine pairs with a wide variety of foods because it acts as a palate cleanser

5 Wine & Food Pairing Guidelines

Champion the Wine

The number one guideline is to bring out the best characteristics of a wine. A high tannin red wine will taste like sweet cherries when paired with the right dish. Focus on the characteristics that you want to champion and make sure that the wine will shine instead of fighting against the food.

Bitter + Bitter = Bad

Since our tastebuds are very sensitive to bitterness, it’s important to pay special attention to not pair bitter food and high tannin wine. Green Beans withCabernet Sauvignon will multiply bitter tastes. If you want to pair a high tannin wine, look to foods with fat, umami and salt for balance.

Wine Should be Sweeter

As a general rule, make sure that the wine is sweeter than the food and you will have a successful wine pairing. If the wine is less sweet than the food it’s matched with, it will tend to taste bitter and tart. This is why Port wine is perfect with dessert.

Wine Should be More Tart

A wine should have higher acidity than the food it’s matched with otherwise it will taste flabby. For instance, a salad with vinaigrette is better with an extra brut Champagne than a buttery Chardonnay.

Improve an Earthy Wine

Ever hear that Old World Wine is better with food? On their own, Old World wines can be very earthy and tart. However, when you pair an earthy wine with something even more earthy like mushroom stroganoff, then the wine tastes more fruity.

Jane’s FIVE FAVORITE PAIRINGS

CABERNET SAUVIGNON & RED MEAT

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Juicy red meat, California Cabernet, Bordeaux and Bordeaux-style blends are terrific with steaks or chops: Their firm tannins refresh the palate after each bite of meat.

CHARDONNAY & SEAFOOD

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Silky whites—for instance, Chardonnays from California, Chile or Australia—are delicious with fish like salmon or any kind of seafood in a lush sauce.

Seafood (spaghetti alle vongole, spaghetti with mussels, linguine with crab) need crisp dry whites such as Frascati, Verdicchio, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, Muscadet or Picpoul de Pinet. A dry rosé is good too. Crab or lobster sauces can take a fuller white such as a good quality Soave or Chardonnay.

BORDEAUX & DARK CHOCOLATE

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Because of the intensity of flavors, bittersweet and dark chocolates need to be paired with stronger red wines with concentrated fruit notes.

While some of the wines above may appear too tannic to pair with chocolate, the cocoa butter decreases the astringency and dryness of the tannins and the higher cacao content enables bittersweet chocolate to pair well.

DRY CHAMPAGNE & CAVIARcaviar-and-champagne-1

One of the best yet least known pairings out there. Vodka is arguably better but not as romantic.

PINOT NOIR & DUCK

Duck “canard” with a sweet sauce such as honey glaze or fruit will pair very well with Pinot Noir.

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References:

By: Yessika Marmol, Jane Lee & Mavis Ye

Pink with just a hint of blue

The Perfect Macaron Recipe

Finding the perfect macaron in Paris can be one of the hardest things ever, especially with so many options nearby. But once you find the perfect ‘mac’ and get addicted, it can be hard to keep paying over 1€ each time you want one of those delicious merengue cookie with perfectly delectable fillings from humble vanilla and chocolate, to fruity and even savory flavors.

Chocolate and Lemon Fillings

So I decided to learn how to make them on my own and attended some cooking workshops [aka. “ateliers”] and studied how to make these enchanting sweets. I first took a class at ‘Le Cordon Blue’ with about 10-15 other students and we made three different fillings and one style of macs (the French style) but when I got home and tried to recreate them according to the recipe (And videos I took) I couldn’t make them survive! I was so disappointed! I tried to make them a couple of days and weeks later but nothing! Just like a bad soufflé, they dropped lower than a granny’s bust when they needed to stay perky.

His and Her's

So I decided to take another class, but at another place I had read about a couple of times, ‘Le Foodist’ and this place was small yet quaint, the owners knew English (Cordon Bleu had a translator for the Chef), and the owners of Le Foodist were very nice and helpful. In class we learned 3 different fillings and two different merengue styles, the French and the Italian with the Italian being the most reliable for beginners. But since none of those fillings were my favorite, the basic vanilla flavor, they actually gave me a sheet with about three more flavors including vanilla, orange and lemon. I was ecstatic! It was hands-on training, times two as you get to try the two different styles and make the fillings yourself. After class we got to taste them with some tea and hear the history of the macaron (and a little bit of French history as well). It was very entertaining and I definitely recommend this workshop for people who want to learn how to make macarons, or tourists visiting that want to do something “French” and different from the regular tourists.

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Recipe for Macarons (French Merengue)

Ingredients:

270g powdered sugar

180g ground almond powder

100 granulated sugar

Separating egg whites

Separating egg whites in a clean, dry container

150g egg whites

Food coloring (optional)

  1. Sift almond and powdered sugar together 
    Sifting Almond

    Sifting Almond

    Sifting almond

  2. Whisk egg whites on medium speed and slowly add granulated sugar until they form a glossy, stiff merengue and the sugar has dissolved.
    Whisking egg whites and sugar

    Whisking egg whites and sugar

    Stiff and glossy

  3. Add the colouring. (I suggest powdered coloring to not mess with the other ingredients because it is a very exact and sensitive recipe)

    Almond and sugar with coloring

    Almond and sugar with powdered coloring

  4. Carefully fold the dry ingredients a little at a time into the merengue. Be careful not to over mix!
  5. Put the mix into a piping bag and pipe small disks on parchment paper. (You can trace a circle on the other side of the paper to make a guide)Piping macs
  6. Bake at 160C for about 12mns. (Every oven is different and with practice you shall see how much it really takes you.)Almost done piping
  7. Remove from oven when done and let cool before adding the filling.
  8. Add filling and store in an air-tight container.
  9. Macarons taste best the next day as the filling has entered the ‘cookie’. They can keep for up to a week, but I’ve never had them for that long so I’m not sure!
  10. Enjoy!
Playing with the extra mix

I like to play around with the extra mix and make cute & funny shapes

As for the filling; you can find nice and easy recipes online or take the class as I did!🙂

Ideal for: Entertaining, gifts and personal obsession.

By: Yessika Mármol

Le Foodist: http://lefoodist.com/

Portuguese cuisine in Paris

Pedra Alta originally from Portugal, the company started with fishing business, then they decided to introduce the traditional Portugal cuisine to the world, especially the sea food and grill with the harvest from their domain.

all the seafood is through by aircraft flown to Paris, and they have their own seafood farms in Portugal, so it is not only taste authentic, and more delicious! all the waiter are come from Portuguese, they speak  English and French. it is good for traveler.3

menu:menu

cold dishes: oysters, lobster, crab, shrimps, escargots. et…

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cooked dishes: cuttlefish, BBQ shrimps, cooked lobster, oysters, serve with french fries

1

price: 30-50 euro per each

address: 6 Avenue Du Général Leclerc Boulogne-Billancourt 92100

M9: Marcel Sembat

BY: LI NILANG

Orient d’Or–The best chinese cuisine in Paris

If you like chinese food, and spicy food, it is right to go there.

The specialty啊啊

Red-braised pork is a dish of Hunan cuisine which is inseparably bound up with the memory of Chairman Mao, so many restaurants call it “The Mao Family’s red-braised pork.” Chairman Mao loved it, and he has insisted his Hunanese chefs cook it for him in Beijing. The chef of Orient d’or is also from Hunan, China. It’s worth to go.

Red-braised pork is a robust concoction, best eaten with plain steamed rice and simple stir-fried vegetables; the sweet, aromatic chunks of meat are irresistible.

Address: 22, Rue de Trévise, 75009 Paris(Metro: line 7 Cadet)

Opening time: 12h-23h30

Telephone: 0148000773

By Anna 试试试试试试

A trip to Thailand in the 13th arrondissement

Paradise Thais has a really grandiose gate in the style of Thailand. You can easily find this restaurant on the street of Tolbiac. The whole restaurant was decorated by using Asia elements, like bamboos, indoor river and the figure of Buddha. We find a video for you to better look at the restaurant.restaurant-paris-paradis-thai-707_1

http://www.restovisio.com/restaurant/le-paradis-thai-707.htm

Surprisingly they offered menu in three languages, French, English and Chinese. The atmosphere here is peaceful, we felt this restaurant is a good place for people who like calm to have a relaxing diner.ZS14Q$FU)8{`V4MKAYFHL%T

The services were friendly. The most impressive part is their cuisine. As two curry lovers, we were so glad to have this place. A little pricy for the area but well worth it.

Tom Yum Soup called Spicy soup with seafood or Spicy soup with shrimps in Paradis Thai is one entry that you can’t miss. It’s sour and spicy with fragrant thai herbs generously used. You can smell the soup before it is served. While tasting this exotic soup, you can find chewy seafood hiding in it. But it will be better if they make the soup thicker. Paradis Thai also serve some alike soups like lemon and coco soup. That means you might find your soup served with a whole coconut and that’s amazing.屏幕快照 2015-03-09 23.36.14

We also like red curry from Paradis Thai so much. You can choose beef, pork or chicken with red, green or yellow curry with jasmine rice or sticky rice. Thai curry is so different from Japanese curry, they use more herbs and they are more various. Red curry beef after the Tom Yum Soup, we are ready for a namaste!IMG_3151

Every time we go to Paradis Thai, we order the Mango with sticky rice and coconut milk as a dessert. Two big pieces of mango, with some sticky rice covered by coconut milk make us feel so fresh after lots of herbs and curry.IMG_3088

I guess this is the secret of thai cuisine and Paradis Thai: sour, spicy, sweet, and herbal. You can taste everything from it but not too much, so you never fell tired of it.

Address: 132, rue de Tolbiac 75013 PARIS

Phone: +33 1 45 83 22 26

Email : paradis.thai@hotmail.fr

 

Griddle cooked chicken with pepper

IMG_1642
Griddle cooked chicken with pepper Chicken as the main ingredients. Green, red bell pepper, sweet corn and green beans can
provide enough vitamin for pregnant women. Dry pot chicken crispy hot and sour taste, color
colorful, can promote appetite,  high nutritional value. cooked chicken with spicy sauce and
vegetables,  it is famous food in Sichuan,  China. and it is easy to cook, some people like to
homemade with their homemade spicy sauce, but in Sichuan, people like to have spicy,  so the
 good way is to make sauce as spicy as possible.
address: 163 Rue Saint Denis, 75002 Paris
M4:Etienne Marcel,  Reaumur-Sepastopol
By Nina&Anna

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Izakaya Night

An ‘izakaya (居酒屋)’ is a type of Japanese way of dining that serves food to accompany the drinks. Unlike other Japanese styles of eating, food are usually shared by everyone.

Izakaya Léngué is the Japanese restaurant, hidden in the heart of Saint-Mitchel area. As we all know that French people are used to order their own food, so we thought this restaurant opened in Paris has the same way to serve. Actually, every dishes here come in small size(really Japanese), you need to order several dishes and share with your friend, like Asian style!

'Our selection'

‘Our selection’

We order almost every recommended dishes we saw in the menu with some other great dishes to try. The price of the starters are 3-10 € and from 6-13 € for the main dishes (which are mostly pork, chicken, shrimp cooked in various Japanese style). You can also order the rice or miso soup separately if you wish.

'POUSSE DE BAMBOU MIJOTLÉ - 6 €'

‘POUSSE DE BAMBOU MIJOTLÉ – 6 €’

'TOFU FRIT DANS UN BOUILLON JAPONAIS - 7 €'

‘TOFU FRIT DANS UN BOUILLON JAPONAIS – 7 €’

'EBI-CHILLI ; Tempuras de Gambas à la Façon de Léngué - 12 €'

‘EBI-CHILLI ; Tempuras de Gambas à la Façon de Léngué – 12 €’

'POULET CARAMÉLISÉ AU CITRON - 10 €'

‘POULET CARAMÉLISÉ AU CITRON – 10 €’

'MISO-KATSU; Porc Pané à la Sauce Miso - 8 €'

‘MISO-KATSU; Porc Pané à la Sauce Miso – 8 €’

'PORC SAUTÉ AU JUS DE GINGEMBRE - 8 €'

‘PORC SAUTÉ AU JUS DE GINGEMBRE – 8 €’

The food taste so great especially when you sip some Japanese Sake all along. The one we’ve tried is called ‘dassai’ and it can be served both hot and cold.

'Kampai !'

‘Kampai !’

Services here was good. There was always one waiter kept an eye on customers, to make sure every demand can be satisfied at the first time. But I felt kind of uncomfortable when they kept walking around us and stared at our table. Besides that, everything was perfect.

This little restaurant is really like traditional Japanese bar. Customers can enjoy the meal with soft light and laid-back music. The whole atmosphere is calm and pleasant, it is a fantastic place for people to have a talk. Just take your time, taste some Japanese alcohol with authentic Japanese cuisine and have a good time with your friends.

Text and Photos by : Zheng He & Praewprow Sintuprasit

Izakaya Léngué

31 Rue de la Parcheminerie, 75005 Paris                                                                            

Tel : 01 46 33 75 10

Metro : Saint-Mitchel

Mapo Doufu

Sichuan, one of the largest provinces is the home of the most savory and spicy food found in China. However, there is more than just piquancy to their culinary, more than what is called “ma”, a little word that means the hot Sichuan taste.

Perhaps the best known dish is Mapo Doufu. It gained in popularity when a pock-marked woman who lived near the Wanfu Bridge opened and ran a restaurant there, circa the 19th century. She served many kinds of bean curd dishes but perhaps the one most liked whose fame spread to the rest of China, got the name of Pock-faced Lady Doufu, better known by its Chinese name of Mapo Doufu.

Ingredients: soft bean curd, corn oil, beef or pork and chopped, scallion, chili paste with garlic, fresh ginger, black bean paste with chili, salt, soy sauce.

cooked all ingredients together after few minutes can serve. doufu 31-麻婆豆腐

address: 129bis, Avenue Choisy, 75013 paris      M7: Tolbiac   12:00-0:30  ferme: Lundi

BY: LI NILANG

Soup! s’il vous plait!

 

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Being raised in a family of doctors means : check up at least once a year and strong recommendation to eat soup. So yes! that makes me a lover of all things SOUP!

Since i moved to Paris, I have been delighted mainly with the food, however, the only thing missing- the variety of soups: vegetable, mushroom, chicken broth, beetroot soup, cabbage soup, fish soup etc.

Therefore, I made it my obsession is to find a place where you can eat something reminding you of soup (but not just onion soup s’il vous plait)

Of course, the first and best option was Asian cuisine,  but at the same time i could not eat them all the time because they are spicy and full of flavor. Sometimes you just need a simple broth, chicken, quail, pigeon! Difficult to find, considered as haute cuisine.

So, after 4 months of search I found my delicious life and stomach saving points:

-Thai Yim in 13 th area( China Town)- variety of soups , i call them raw beauty,more like goulash, rich, spicy, flavorful and delicious – like homemade  (but sometimes you get tired of it)

-Siamin, off Avenue Montagne(Champs Elysees) – more european style interior, food is more delicate, decor and set up are a bit more glamorous than others i visited as well as the ambiance of the place :crowd- 1st floor locals, second floor-tourists mostly.

-Aux petit Thai at Saint Paul(Le Marais) is also good but soups are also too european, so i prefer duck curry rouge that also reminds me of traditional soup accompanied by Nem Thai style instead of bread.

French are not that much of soup people, croissant rules here. The one i tried by chance was soup at grand boulevard, Le Matin. Frankly speaking i haven’t seen many nice places there, so we just stepped by to one before french classes and I got vegetable soup-very decent quality i should say, service a la Francais! Don’t expect that much, but the smile changes everything, So smile! it may make you live longer.

-Another place to eat soup, pumpkin, creamy, we found by chance. After classes, looking for nice place in 16th, looking in the windows of restaurants I basically drowned in one- I saw soup!!! (I almost entered the window) it was not polite at all, but I had been starved of soup. So we took lunch at Le Grand Armee – pumpkin heaven, and the Thai style prawns side dish made my day. The Soup goes with the ambiance of the place: classy, nice, well – behaved, perfect faces (Guys of course), so you can fully enjoy the atmosphere of lunch, sipping wine and observing crowd, Allez-y!

Of course there is always an option to go to Russian restaurant Pushkin and get broth or borsch but portions will be smaller than home and pretty pricy. Besides, it’s boring and you miss a chance to explore something new but I’m always up for it!

My search was primarily in the 13th arrondissement, 4-6th arrondissement where I spent most of time and 16th arrondissement where I took jewelry and wine classes.

1- Thai Yim

Address: 14 rue Caillaux 75013 Paris

Price range €

2 -Siamin

Address: 19 rue Bayard 75008 Paris

Price range: €€

3 – Aux petit Thai
Address:10 rue Roi de Sicile 75004 Paris

Price range €€

4 – Le Matin
Address: 12 boulevard Poissonniere 75009

Price range: €

5 – La Grand Armee
Address: 3 avenue Grande Armée 75116 Paris
Price range: €€€

If you are I interested, let me know what area should I explore to find you decent place to have a bowl of soup

Soupeaters :Kovelenova Alina and Ola Shade