I’ll have in-depth guides to my favorite cities and retreats available by subscription in a few months. In the meantime, here’s a cheat sheet of some of my favorite places in Paris right now.
Mokonuts Everyone’s cuckoo for Mokonuts, a café and bakery opened by a husband and wife duo with great resumes. And with good reason. The highly personal food in this miniature space hits all the spots, from Lebanese- and Japanese-inflected plats du jour to cookies that are practically baked to order in flavors like mole-goji berry or fennel seed with lemon confit. Hit it on an off hour — just get there before they leave to pick up their kids at 5. Closed weekends.
Déviant Pierre Touitou, one of my favorite young chefs, opened this truly deviant space next to his restaurant, Vivant. With a bar that opens right onto the street, they serve snacky dishes like tamarind-ginger chicken wings and close to 60 natural wines to an incredibly cool crowd. No tables, no chairs, no problem. Bonus: They’re open late — always a jet-lagged person’s problem in this town.
La Buvette Camille Fourmont’s tiny wine bar is still one of my favorite places in Paris. I come for a glass (okay, bottle) of natural wine and stake out a table so I can order everything on her menu. So what if she doesn’t have a kitchen? Her tender gigante beans with yuzu zest, just-right cheeses like burrata with sumac powder, intense charcuterie and weekend oysters are impeccably sourced. The crowd, too, seems handpicked among the world’s natural wine lovers. See Camille’s guide to Paris that we did for Bon Appétit here.
Double Dragon Tatiana Levha, the superstar chef behind another favorite, Le Servan, is known for her fearless use of spice (sadly missing in Paris). She’s also known for not taking herself too seriously (see above). With her new pan-Asian spot, both strengths are on full display. Here, she’ll douse fried (heirloom) chicken with spicy sauce, wrap whole Uzbek chilis in delicate phyllo, and sneak more than a few hot peppers into a cool rice noodle salad with langoustine. It’s exactly what you’ll want to eat after a few days of French-French-French.
Tea at Le Meurice Pastry chef Cédric Grolet is making next-level magic in Le Dalí, as well as in the lobby of this five-star hotel. Dress up (and reserve) to access trompe l’oeil “fruits,” exquisite tarts, and more from 2:30 to 6 daily. Can’t get a table? Take some back to your hotel at his vertiginously expensive new pâtisserie around the corner from the hotel’s entrance on rue Castiglione.