I hope all of you are enjoying the series ‘A vegetarian foodie’s adventures across Europe’. I am having fun writing them and it reminds me of both the delicious as well as inedible food (there were quite a few of them too) I ate around Europe.
This week, I bring you updates from the Crème de la crème of European food. The fact that I used French should have given you some indication about which country I am talking about. One of the things that I like about both French vegetarian food and vegetarian food in France (mind you, both are two very different things) are the variety of options we get to choose from.
Since it was a repeat trip for me, I did not spend too many days in this beautiful country. But I still ate a lot of delicious food and that is why it tops as a favorite destination this time for the foodie in me. So, without further ado, let me take you through my experiences as a vegetarian foodie in France.
- Paris, France:
As mentioned before, by the time I got to Paris, I was exhausted. Till then, I was too excited to see all the places in my itinerary. I was kind of relieved when I found out that it was raining. When you are at home, what do you usually do if it is raining. Sit in your balcony of your apartment, watching the rain and reading a book as you sip a delicious cup of coffee. Also, add some chilli bhajjis to the mix and you are set for the day. I think the beauty of rains are enhanced when you have some comfort food to go along with it.
That is exactly what I did due to the rains in Paris. Eat a lot of food, while exploring the romantic city by foot. Unfortunately, the number of useable photos from this venture is minimal since I left my DSLR in the hotel on most days.
Paris was definitely the most expensive city I visited this time. On my first night in Paris, I really did not have the strength to venture out far and decided to go to a place right opposite my hotel. I was staying in the 1st arrondissement (Paris is divided into districts or arrondissements) and that meant I had many to choose from. Imagine my surprise, when I realized that I had to pay close to 20 Euros for a plate of pasta. If you are in Paris, do be careful when it comes to choosing restaurants. They can definitely put a dent in your wallet.
Since the hotel I was staying in did not include breakfast with the room charges, I decided to head to Angelina for breakfast the next day. This was less than 5 minutes walking distance from my hotel. Angelina is a tea room that was founded in 1903 in Paris and has been an integral part of Parisian food ever since. Please be warned that there will be a minimum of 30 minutes wait time to get into this tea room. But the experience is definitely worth it. The whole place is so elegant and sophisticated that you would not mind waiting in the queue.
A typical breakfast includes an assortment of French pastries, fresh cut fruits, eggs to order and a drink. Please do have the ‘Hot Chocolate’ here since it was just out of this world. Actually, hot chocolate anywhere in Paris is always a good idea. Rest of the breakfast is delicious too. This assorted breakfast is priced around 25 Euros.
Since I was visiting friends for lunch, my friend brought me my first falafel in Europe. I was hooked and I continued having them whenever I could. There are many well-known falafel shops all around Paris.
I had a lot of pastries around Paris. Paris is heaven for people with a sweet tooth and you are spoilt with choices. If you are a dessert aficionado like me, then you have to try Financers, Eclairs, Macaroons, Profiteroles, Chocolates and so many more. If you are in mood for an icecream in Paris, then Berthillion in Paris is another favorite. Again, be prepared to wait in queue.
|Macaroon Tower, Laduree|
|Desserts, Laduree, Paris|
Another thing I loved in Paris were the crepes. How can you go to France and not have French crepes? On my last day in Paris, I went to Laduree for breakfast. Laduree is a luxury bakery that was set up in 1862. You have to try the Macaroons here. It was another delicious breakfast.
Paris was a foodie heaven for me. Hopefully I will get time to eat more delicious food next time I am in Paris.
- Strasbourg, France:
I was in Strasbourg only for a night. But I had a tough time finding vegetarian food here. Since it is not a mainstream place like Paris, not many people spoke English and it was difficult for me to make them understand that I wanted something vegetarian. Also the menus were in French. I stuck to the easy options like pizza and pasta here. Since it is close to Germany and Switzerland, Gugelhupf, a bunt cake is quite famous here. I loved it and you should definitely give it a try as well.
I was in Colmar for few hours and the only thing I ate here was a gratin inside the food market. Since it was made of organic products, I loved the taste of the gratin. Even though Colmar is a small town, they do have an Indian restaurant for vegetarians.
France has no dearth of options when you are looking for delicious food. I wish I had spent more time in Paris so that I could eat all those delicious things that I missed eating.
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