A perfect Sunday in Le Marais, Paris

Posted on February 8, 2010


Sunday is my favourite day in Paris. A lazy morning, some kind of ridiculous brunch/lunch menu in the Marais with friends, a wander around stopping at the odd boutique, coffee with more friends, more wandering, maybe another stop for friends and then dinner before going home for a tisane and early night.

The Marais is pretty much the only area of Paris that is open all day on Sunday. Local Bastille market is open in the morning but shops are mainly closed. The Marais, which literally means bog named after the land its built on, is full of little streets with wonderful boutiques. Walk from Place des Vosges, along des rue Francs Bourgois for window shopping (unless you are feeling particularly rich), maybe stopping at Musee Picasso for an hour or two.

There are a number of places that do great brunches. One of my favourites is Le Loire dans la Theiere (the doormouse in the teapot) named after Alice in Wonderland. They do a really good brunch with superb oeufs cocotte (usually with spinach or mushroom), plus creamy yoghurt, delicious fruit compte and pastries. It is mainly well know for it’s amazing home-made cakes and pies (the lemon meringue is at least 10cms high) and tall silver tea pots filled at your choice.

Lunch today was at Les Philosophes on rue Vielle de Temple. It’s a Parisian favourite and  you always have to wait for a table, if it’s just for a few minutes. Les  Philisophes has a great menu and I highly recommend trying the tarte tartin de tomate as a large starter or a small main. For 17 euros you can have the soup or entree du jour, plus the plat du jour which today was leek and potato soup or tartare de saint jacques (scallops) and then piece de boeuf en brioche (a beef wellington) with a champignon (mushroom) sauce and puree de pomme de terres (potato mash). It was enormous and perfectly cooked – ideal after a few cocktails the night before. For 24euros you can have dessert and a coffee too however I have no idea how people can eat all three courses.

If you get a chance, the book shop opposite is great for a Saturday lunch. You can browse the shop whilst they ship in your order from Les Philosophes opposite. Very novel and somehow very French.