Posted by: vlibrizzi | November 29, 2009

Crepes in the Marais, Renoir in the Palais

We’re beginning to get used to this “Sundays in Paris” thing. Maybe too used to it….since we only have one Sunday left in Paris 😦

Today we took the train into Paris to have lunch and then to go to the Renoir in the 20th century exhibit at the Grand Palais. 

After visiting Breizh Cafe on Friday with a friend (see two posts ago for a review), I was dying to take C. there to check it out. So, today, with a few other friends, we headed into the Marais to have some crepes. Unfortunately, we had no idea how crowded Breizh Cafe would be on a Sunday afternoon, but since there are very few good restaurants open on Sundays in Paris, and since Breizh is located in the Marais, which is probably the only neighborhood that I know of whose stores are open on Sundays, the restaurant was absolutely packed. Luckily, the waiters were nice and told us to come back in 45 minutes and they’d make sure to get us a table. 

So we went across the street to another cafe to warm up a bit (it was freezing outside today!). We each gulped down our chocolate chauds, chatted for a bit, and then headed back to Breizh…

..where we, literally, feasted on crepes. I think I was in heaven!

I know I blogged about this place just the other day, but I had forgotten then to bring my camera with me (a major oversight), so I thought I’d add some photos today.


Here’s C.’s camembert, lettuce, and savoyarde ham galette.







Here’s our waiter serving our Grand Mariner flambee crepe.







And, here’s all of our dessert crepes: pistachio, Grand Marnier, and banana caramel. Yum!

We walked off our lunch by strolling through the buzzing Marais for a bit before taking the metro across town to the Grand Palais. 

The Renior exhibit was absolutely amazing. If you plan to be in Paris before the end of January, you must check it out.  Better yet for those of you in the US, it’s coming to the Philadelphia Museum of Art in June!

The exhibit had over 100 of his paintings, often coupled with others by Picasso, Matisse, and Bonnard, in order to show the influence of Renoir on more modern artists as his own style evolved. Plus, it also had some of Renoir’s lesser-known sculptures and drawings. But the most interesting part may have been the many photos of Renior during his lifetime, with other artists, painting in his studios, or sitting with his family. Seeing the photos really gave you a sense of who he was as a person (a true artistic genius who grew too old too quickly as a result of his rheumatoid arthritis) and that made us appreciate his paintings even more. 

As we walked out of the Grand Palais, we noticed that the trees along the Champs Elysee were beautifully lit and there were tons of people at the outdoor Christmas markets. 

You can see some of the markets, which stretch from the Place de Concorde halfway up to the Arc de Triomphe in the photo to the left.




And then, as we walked back to the metro, C. jumped into the street (while the light was red…don’t worry!) and snapped this photo of the trees lit up along the Champs Elysee—-you can see the Arc de Triomphe in the background. Pretty nice view, eh?

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