Archive for October, 2009

Metlinks OTW : Week 9, 30.10.09

As October turns into November, the autumn rain tapping lightly on the window, this weekend on la Toussaint we’ll take a moment to remember those who lived before us. And for American expats, Happy Halloween!

Champs Elysees by night

  • Eating out with foodies can be a trying experience (not always, it just can be). We’ll make you wait until photographic evidence is taken before you can eat, and we’re probably attracting plenty of weird looks from the other diners too. Still, culinary photography can be rewarding. Case in point – the very first International Festival of Culinary Photography! OK, these folks are professionals but the topic remains the same – beautiful food-related photographs. The festival runs from 6th to 15th November at Bercy Village.
  • BBC correspondent, Vincent Dowd took the “Van Gogh Express” to Auvers-sur-Oise just outside of Paris, to follow the footsteps of the famous post-impressionist master.
  • Boris Johnson (Mayor of London) wants to build something to rival the Eiffel Tower. Seen as an ambitious vanity project, we’ll see what the winning design will be in the next couple of weeks. And if it’ll be in place by the time Olympics 2012 starts.
  • Marché d’Art de la Bastille is currently underway and will remain in place at Place de la Bastille, Place de l’Arsenal, Boulevard Bourdon and Boulevard de la Bastille until Sunday 1st Nov. Ticket costs €8 and hundreds of artists are displaying their works for your perusal, and hopefully, purchase.
  • How well do you really know Paris? Get your hand on this book and take the 400-questions quiz. (I need to get me a copy.) In the mean time you can try this simple quiz from National Geographic.
  • Paris by Appointment Only brings us back to Deyrolle, ahead of the launch of 1000° C: Deyrolle.
  • Hmmmm, a Hamlet-inspired cabaret… Ham. & Ex by Matthias Langhoff will be performing from 5th November to 12th December at Odéon Theatre. To go or not to go, that is the question.
  • I may have been watching Ratatouille once too often. After seeing this blogpost on Etablissements Julien Aurouze I pegged it right away as the pest shop featured in the animated movie. A quick google said I was right, yay!
  • Interestingly-named exhibition at the Conciergerie, somewhat Halloween-related, is Le sort probable de l’homme qui avait avalé le fantôme, roughly translated as “the probable fate of the man who had swallowed the ghost”. Weird, right?
  • Versailles was the centre of political power in France under the reign of King Louis XIV but it is only now that the very first exhibition of the Sun King is being held at the palace which he once held supreme. Some 300 artworks have been gathered to show the king as a leader in war, a patron of arts, a defender of the church and of course, a royal who lived lavishly and in style. “Louis XIV, l’homme et le roi” runs until 7th February 2010, and opens daily except Mondays (and although there’s no mention, I believe it’ll be closed at Christmas and New Year too).

Round up : Salon du Chocolat 2009

My friends (two whom are also fellow Metbloggers here) and I were at the Salon du Chocolat last week for a few hours of choco-loving. This was something that we did for the last couple of years together, and this year was no exception. Meanwhile, I resolved to not overspend this time round that I even limit the amount of cash I brought with me. What can I say? I lack self-discipline in face of delicious stuff…

Chocolate places that are normally easily found in Paris were a bit less on the priority as we paid more attention to exhibitors from outside of Paris and from abroad. Of course, it’s not all about chocolate. Other delights include macarons, praline, cupcakes, nougat, ice cream, fudge etc.

Chocolates of Malarchocolaterie and macarons from Christophe Roussel

Mälarchocolaterie and macarons of Christophe Roussel

Eiffel Tower chocolates and fudge selections

Eiffel Tower chocolates and fudge selections


Pierre Hermé and Xocoatl, the Drink of Gods

Musée du quai Branly is currently celebrating the Teotihuacan culture. Dubbed the City of Gods, it was a large city of Ancient Mexico steeped in cultural richness and absolutely fascinating in their way of life, politics, society, rituals, crafts, and certainly in their influences in other ancient societies.

It is well known that the Mesoamerican civilisations were the first to put xocolātl into conscious knowledge and subsequent reverence, and to this day, I can’t thank them enough for this wonderful discovery and cultivation of theirs. And in Teotihuacan, it was the Drink of Gods.

Chocolate sculpture by Pierre Hermé

Chocolate sculpture by Pierre Hermé

This weekend, in conjunction with the exhibition and cultural trail, Pierre Hermé is going to put his brand of magic through chocolate drinks. Four chocolate drinks, created based on inspirations drew from Mexican chocolates, promise to “retrace the history of chocolate through the ages, from the ritual drink of Teotihuacan to the present day”. It sounds so delicious already, isn’t it?

Therefore, either today (24th Oct) or tomorrow (25th Oct), between 2.30pm and 6.30pm, make your way to the foyer of the Claude Lévi-Strauss theatre at the musuem, enjoy the occasion and be inspired by the wonder of trickling hot chocolate conjured by the master himself. The event is free and open to all.

Better still, why not be there earlier and take some time to see the exhibition and learn the story of the Teotihuacan? There are also tons of other special programmes for this week, in the lead up to the All Saints Day on 1st November.

Ps: morbid as it sounds, the rituals of the deads really have me quite fascinated and a “Ball of the Deads” will be taking place on 1st November (that’s next Sunday) from 4.30pm to 6.30pm, with performances by Isaura Corlay and the ballet dancers of la Maison du Mexique. They will be accompanied by El mariachi Mezcal!

Metlinks OTW : Week 8, 23.10.09

Another round of Metlinks for you, with several events to take note if you’re an art junkie like me. I hope you have a lovely weekend ahead, and oh, if you have something interesting that you wish to share with us, feel free to leave a comment or email us at :)

Monsieur Chat

  • Recognise Mr Chat above? If you can’t have enough of him, Galeries Pierre Cardin is the place to be between now and 5th November. (Sorry about the slightly blurry image above, which was taken on Rue Bonaparte a few months ago.)
  • Well the big news a few hours ago – Jean Sarkozy finally caved and abandoned the pursuit of the presidency of EPAD. Business folks at La Defense – a sigh of relief.
  • Poor France had to go through a round of play-off in order to play in the World Cup next year in South Africa. They’ll be playing Ireland in a couple of weeks. Ensues torn loyalty for me, as someone who loves both countries. Anyway, in a bid not to have Irish fans overrun Stade de France on match day, only 8,500 tickets would be allocated to Football Association of Ireland.
  • Do you find the tales of King Arthur fascinating? If so, here’s something for you. The exhibition La légende du Roi Arthur is currently running at Bibliothèque nationale de France (BNF), until 24th January 2010.
  • Two new exhibitions also started this week in Musée d’Orsay which I personally believe to be very interesting. The Art Nouveau Revival is quintessentially French in essence and spirit, and James Ensor‘s works on Expressionism are simply haunting and dramatic. Both exhibitions will end on 4th February 2010.
  • If sculpture is more of your thing, you should go to Musée Rodin. Pairing 2 masters – Matisse and Rodin – with about thirty years separating them, see how they drew inspirations from and for each other.
  • Astérix is turning 50 next week (29th October) and to celebrate this special occasion, about 30 pieces of original works that chronicle Astérix’s adventure, along with some related objects, will be on exhibit at Musée Cluny (aka Musée National du Moyen Âge) from 28th October 2009 to 3rd January 2010.
  • Oooo have you heard – La Tour d’Argent are auctioning off some of their finest from their wine cellar! Yes, some bottles would inevitably be overpriced… but if you’re still interested, the address is Salons Hoche (9 avenue Hoche, 75008) and the auction will take place on 7th-8th December.
  • Were you at the fake snowball fight while cruising down the Seine?
  • Leonora Epstein has just moved to Paris last month and is testing the water in the dating scene. How tricky will it be, with the cultural and language differences? Already, she has just broke up with the guy that she had been seeing in the last month or so. By choice, mind. I can see her logic, being non-French myself, but isn’t all relationship somewhat complicated at one point or another?

Sparkly, colourful Eiffel Tower

There are so much that we want to share and to tell you, but work is keeping us away from this blog. I certainly wish for some normalcy back in my life, but until that happens, I can hope for the best.

Now, here’s something you shouldn’t miss. And frankly, there’s no excuse to miss it either – you’ll see later what I mean by this. I know we have talked a good bit of the famous Parisian tower in recent months, but it is just such a significant landmark for celebratory events that we couldn’t help ourselves.

citroen eiffel

Tonight, a new fête begins.

Eiffel Group and its party/commercial partner Citroën are bringing 10 weeks of spectacular light show on the Trocadéro façade by using state-of-the-art LED spotlights. The colours will change and shimmer and do all the pretty little things in between. Against the dark night sky, it’s going to be fa-bu-lous.

For the opening night (i.e this evening!) the shows are running at 9pm, 9.30pm, 10pm, 10.30pm and 11pm. That’s every half-hourly between 9pm and 11pm. For 12 minutes (each representing 10 years of Eiffel Tower’s existence) of colour fest, it’s worth taking a pause to take in this eye-candy.

If you’re not in Paris (or whatever reason can’t make it all the way to Trocadéro), then login to Citroën Opération Tour Eiffel which will be streaming the show from 10 key viewpoints nearby. See, told you there’s no excuse to miss it. ;)

After tonight, there’s still plenty of time for you to catch the show in person. Until the 31st December, the light performance will be taking place on the hour between 8pm and 11pm, on a daily basis. And if you wonder what will happen to the bright sparkles, good news – they’re going to sparkle as usual for the first five minutes.

Now, that’s what I call double the merriment, double the joy, double the fun! Ah yes, and the Iron Lady will bask in full blown glory. :D

Ps: for more info, here’s the linky to Eiffel’s website.

Twitpic-cing Paris

The team of Paris Metblogs have been using Twitter for a couple of months now (follow us @ParisMB) and we’re now adding some pictures via Twitpic.

Sunrise over Île de la Cité

Sunrise over Île de la Cité

This is our maiden Twitpic and may there be many more to come. We hope you like it as much as we do! (By the way, we’re Twitpic-cing here.)

Théâtre : Les 39 marches

Une des choses que j’aime bien à Paris, c’est les théâtres ! Il y en a tellement, le seul problème c’est de choisir quelle pièce aller voir… Je viens donc vous faire de la pub de façon éhontée :

L’autre soir, je suis allée voir “Les 39 marches” au théâtre de La Bruyère et c’était tout simplement fantastique !

Une adaptation singulière du film du même nom réalisé par Alfred Hitchcock (attention “spoilers” si vous suivez le lien) mise en scène par Eric Metayer (/swoon) : 4 acteurs pour ‘150 personnages’ (bon moi j’ai pas compté hein mais c’est crédible) et des accessoires impressionnants de simplicité et de réalisme.

La lande écossaise, ses cascades, ses paysans et ses petits hôtels 100% typiques, des courses folles à pied, en train ou en voiture, de l’action à couper le souffle… et ENORMEMENT d’humour ! ‘Tous les moments forts du film’, j’avoue que je sais pas (j’aimerai bien voir maintenant) mais en tout cas un condensé de moments forts en soi ! Malheureusement, on ne peut pas adopter le chat à la fin, snif, il était tellement adorable pourtant…

Superbes jeux d’acteurs, bravo à Eric Metayer et ses co-acteurs : Andréa Bescond, Christophe Laubion et Jean-Philippe Bèche.

A voir du 10 octobre au 20 décembre 2009. En plus les places sont à moitié prix il me semble jusqu’au 23 octobre… Merci à la rentrée des théâtres ;) Alors comment pourriez-vous résister ?

Metlinks OTW : Week 7, 16.10.09

So, have you been taking advantage of the Tasting Week and check out any new restaurants? Have you notice the operatic theme to this year’s Salon du Chocolat? Have you sense the city returning to some sort of normalcy now that who’s who in fashion are away from Paris?

Chocolate of Madame Setsuko

  • The Paris Fashion Week is over. Since we’re a bit clueless on matters like fashion, we leave you in the good hands of Mademoiselle à Paris who must have like attended a gazillion runway shows. Respect!
  • The exhibition “We Want Miles” come to Paris for 3 months, starting today and will run until 17th January 2010, at Cité de la musique. Jazz lovers and Miles Davis’ admirers rejoice!
  • Not sure if there’s anyone here who plays around with web design and the likes, but if you do, here’s a font called Parisian that you can download.
  • A leading trend in Twitter this past week for Paris is Jean Sarkozy. On the 11th, 12th, 13th… you get the idea. Since the news broke on the 11th, plenty has been written on this as an issue of nepotism. As Times Online said, Sarkozy rules, okay. Of course, the French first family doesn’t think this is nepotism at all… no surprises there.
  • Carnavalet fait sa révolution! The Carnavalet Museum is running an exhibition on all things related to the French Revolution. From prints and documents to Marie Antoinette’s shoe, and those in between, numbering approximately 250 items in total. The exhibition will close on 3rd January 2010.
  • The International Contemporary Art Fair 2009, niftily acronymed as FIAC 2009, is taking place next week from 22nd to 25th October. The tickets for the exhibits in the Grand Palais and Cour Carrée of the Louvre won’t come cheap, but you can always enjoy the in-situ projects presented at the Tuilleries Garden for free.
  • Clotilde Dusolier from Chocolate & Zucchini was live-chatting on Times Online last week, and here’s the Q&A if you missed the event.
  • Drat – our radar missed the Pariscience Film Festival! It took place last week from 7th to 11th October, and about 40 scientific films competed for the Grand Prix Pariscience 2009. Congratulations to the crew behind The Music Instinct!
  • David Lebovitz has some tips for newbies in Paris, and some of them are absolutely delicious.
  • Ugo Rondinone, a Swiss mix-media artist currently has 2 installations in Paris for all to enjoy, for free, as part of the Festival d’Automne. “Sunrise East” features 12 totem-like sculpture at Tuilleries Garden while “How Does It Feels?” at Le Centquartre is a contemporary interplay of neon lights, voice and architecture. Both installations run until 15th November.


Today, the fun begins! 5 days of chocolate wonders, and the opportunity to stock up on the most varied selection of chocolates. Don’t miss it and we may see you there! (Yes, we will be there at some point – you don’t think we’re going to miss it, do you?) ;)

Salon du Chocolat (pictures from 2007 & 2008 editions)

Salon du Chocolat (pictures from 2007 & 2008 editions)

You can buy your ticket ahead at Fnac Spectacles, where dated tickets (seem to be available only for weekdays) are €12 each and open tickets (for Saturday and Sunday) are €14 each. You may also buy tickets at the door although queues may be long. Since the website of the Salon du Chocolat indicates the ticket price to be €12 each, I’m assuming that’s the price you’ll be paying regardless of the day, so long as you buy it at the door.

The event runs from 14th October (today) until 18th October (Sunday) and opens daily from 10pm to 7pm, with extended opening on 16th October (Friday) until 9pm, at Porte de Versailles.

Foodies alert – La Semaine du Goût

Last month, we briefly mentioned a mark-your-calendar for Salon du Chocolat and the days are drawing closer – it’s starting on Wednesday 14th October and will run until Sunday 18th October. This 15th Edition is bigger than ever, and running longer than before too. There are more demos and shows for your watching pleasure, and the ticket price hasn’t change from the last couple of years either, at €12 each.

But of course, as big as chocolate can be, this week in Paris is not all about the dark stuff. This week also marks the 20th anniversary of La Semaine du Goût!

La Semaine du Goût

La Semaine du Goût

The week kicked off on Saturday 10th October and will run until Sunday 18th October, and for a solid 8-days period, plenty of foodie events to keep everyone happy. Perhaps with exception the folks who have just wrapped up the Paris Fashion Week and still lingering in town, but too self-conscious to eat more than they normally dare to? (Just kidding. No one can be in France and not take advantage of the culinary smorgasbord on offered!)

Some restaurants are running special menus in conjuction with the week, there are chefs that are opening the doors to their kitchens/workshops for demos, classes or tours, and to encourage children to appreciate the joy of food, there are specially designed workshops for children as well. Check out the full programme of the restaurants and the workshops.

Of course, this week-long celebration is not confined to just Paris and Ile-de-France region. It’s nationwide, rightly so because everyone can do with a nice foodie treat now and then.

And oh, before we sign off, tomorrow (Monday 12th October) morning at around 9am, about 500 chefs will assemble at Trocadéro for a photocall to celebrate the 20 years of la Semaine du Goût. If you are in the area, why not join the festivities and play “spot-the-celebrity-chef” or something similar? ;)

Bon appétit!

Ps: for something a little different, check out la Balade du Goût in Ile-de-France on Saturday 17th October and Sunday 18th October. Nothing like the present to understand better the origin of the delicious morsels of food that we’re savouring everyday, right?

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