When I look back at my time studying abroad, there is no doubt that most of my memories will involve food. Paris is a culinary city through and through, and I made it my mission to try both the traditional and up-and-coming food trends of the city. I was lucky enough to have friends who were willing to come with me and not judge my need to photograph everyone’s dish before we dug in. The best thing about Paris is that I never had a bad meal.
I made sure to document my favorite foods so that anyone who visits will know where to go. Just a heads up — there are a lot of carbs. But what else would you expect from a blog titled Bagels to Baguettes?
The best bakery, hands down, is Circus Bakery, located in the Latin Quarter. It is right near Notre Dame and behind the famous bookstore, Shakespeare and Company. This place has been especially busy since being featured on Bon Appetit’s Instagram page. It’s best known for the cinnamon and cardamom buns that are almost too beautiful to eat.
The bakery itself is quaint and rustic, fitting in perfectly with the old-world feel of the Latin Quarter. There’s not much seating since the space is dedicated to a large baking area, but it’s a cool experience to watch the bakers twist the dough and take fresh pastries out of the oven. After grabbing a bun, head over to the park around the corner and enjoy your treat with a view of Notre Dame.
If you ask any foodie living in Paris where to get Italian cuisine, they will probably mention one of the Big Mamma restaurants. These restaurants are super trendy and don’t take reservations, AKA you will probably need to wait in line before opening. This experience is for dedicated foodies only (or for people who are friends with dedicated foodies and don’t mind coming along).
I visited BigLove in 3rd Quartier and can confirm it was totally worth the wait. All of the ingredients are straight from Italy, meaning the pasta and pizza are as authentic as you can get in France. This experience was special to me for two reasons: I was able to go with my parents when they came to visit, and also due to the coronavirus outbreak, I wasn’t able to travel to Italy. But, this meal definitely made me feel as if I went there.
There are crepes all over Paris. However, if you want a more unique experience, there is a tiny Japanese-themed creperie in the Marais called Princess Crepe. The crepes here are loaded with fruits and sweets and are almost too cute to eat. If you get ice cream on top, they will even decorate it to look like a bear! Make sure you check the time before visiting, because this place is only open for a few hours every day.
Lastly, living in Paris without trying steak frites would be disgraceful. Relais de l’Entrecote is most known for steak frites because it’s the only thing on their menu. Again, you may have to wait on line for this place because it is one of the most famous restaurants conveniently located off the Champs-Elysee.
This place is perfect for college students on a budget who still want the experience of fine dining. The meal starts with a walnut salad, and you get not one, but TWO servings of delicious steak topped with a top-secret sauce. While true Parisians may find this to be a tourist trap, the food is undeniably good. After all, if you only have one thing on the menu, it’s bound to be perfect.
While these were the highlights of the things I’ve tried here, there were so many more I didn’t mention. No matter what kind of food you are looking for, Paris is sure to have it. Come hungry!
Kiana Carver, Study Abroad Correspondent
Kiana Carver is a junior in the College of Communication studying Advertising and Film and Television. She is studying abroad in Paris through BU’s Internship Program. In her free time, she enjoys watching and reviewing new films, listening to true crime podcasts, and spending time with family. In Boston, Kiana hosts a radio show on WTBU, writes for the Buzz Magazine, and has directed a play for Stage Troupe.