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Cezanne + Verjus

Paris, France:  We woke to rain, but didn't let the weather stop us from our planned activities. The rain wasn't supposed to fall until the afternoon, so we planned a river cruise in the morning, and spending the rainy afternoon in an art museum. Whatever. We just plowed-ahead. We are, after all, Oregonians and may know a thing or two about rain. We walked down to the river (about two blocks), over the Pont Neuf bridge and boarded a tour boat that cruised up and down the Seine River in Paris, passing by many famous landmarks.

Tour boat


Bridge decor


Back of Notre Dam

Car on a boat

Eiffel Tower

After our one hour boat tour, we walked back into St. Germaine for lunch. It was drizzly and not too many people were out and about. It was easy to find a seat in any restaurant.

It was French Onion Soup weather, for sure.

After lunch we walked to the Musee d'Orsay, which was once a train station. The building is just amazing and the art - we concentrated on a special exhibit of portraits by Cezanne - is world-renown. We have previously visited this museum with Lisa.

Musee d'Orsay

The original "reception" room on the second floor of the old Paris train station

Ceiling of the reception room.
We really need to redecorate when we get home.

Trains once came and went from this part of the building.
Now it houses a statue gallery.

We were really surprised to find a marble statue of our grandson, Leo, in the museum today. Apparently the statue is really Saint Jean-Baptiste as a child, sculpted by Jules Lafrance in 1878, but we know better.

We left the museum and began our walk back to the hotel. It was not raining! We saw a very familiar face across the street from the museum:

Thomas Jefferson - left as a tribute to the US President
and Ambassador to France, 1785-1789.

Our walk took us through the Tuileries Garden again:

Statue of a fallen tree in the Tuileries Garden

Tuileries Garden

What visit to Paris is complete without a crepe? Our afternoon snack today - with strong coffee.
Dave chose the "flavor" - salted caramel. A winner.

Then, back to our hotel room for a rest before dinner.

We had a very special meal planned for our last night in Paris - dinner at Verjus. This amazing restaurant (owned by Americans) has been getting all sorts of raves and kudos since opening five years ago. Lisa and Lenny dined here several years ago and practically demanded we eat here while in Paris. So, we saved the best for last. Between rain showers, we walked to Verjus.

Verjus (pronounced vair-juice and is an acidic grape juice used in French cooking) serves one set meal each night to each patron, and I would guess the restaurant seats 28 people or so at a time. Reservations are a must. You have no idea what you will be eating until you sit down (though they do ask about dietary restrictions/allergies when you make a reservation). Verjus also offer a suggested wine paring, but we just ordered the wine we wanted from their great wine list. The menu tonight:

The four starters were served to us at once, family-style, and are presented without plates or cutlery, to share.

From 12 o'clock: Burrata with melon roasted for 7 hours in olive oil, focaccia, potato foie gras and plums sandwiched between potato "chips", radishes with yoghurt and chives, tomato crostata with sorrel and onion.

I really loved the melon and burrata (super fresh soft mozzarella), slathered on the rosemary focaccia.

Baby green and yellow beans, white nectarine and bean -
Dave's serving held a nice chunk of lobster under the beans

Red cabbage

Smoked sirloin tartare with cream

Bone marrow - on a bed of salt with flowers

A little palate cleanser - little "ice cream cones" made to resemble carrots in the "sand".
The ice cream was cucumber-ginger.

Blurry dessert: Broiche and berries with vanilla cream

Luckily we had a table directly under a window, so I had a little light to photograph our meal before it grew too dark... so the dessert is a bit blurry.

This was a wonderful dining experience and I am so happy we were able to experience Verjus tonight. Everything was so delicious and though the portions were very small, we both ate too much.

During our meal, there was a torrential downpour, but it stopped before we had to walk back to our hotel. Perfect timing, but we ended up covering 6.7 miles in total today. My Driver had to ice his knee for quite a while tonight... but again we were able to watch the 11p Eiffel Tower light show from our hotel room.

We fly to Los Angeles tomorrow.

Until my next update, I remain, your gourmet correspondent.

My review of our Paris Hotel: The Regina

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Paris Tourist Bureau