I am very sentimental: every time I leave a place, even if I hated it at first. I feel nostalgic and this is exactly how I feel about the Halle Pajol neighbourhood, where I spent the last few months in Paris.
Let me explain you : in Paris, I have always lived in “Le Marais”, the hipster district where you can find all the trendy designers, the charming cafés, and also the Jewish and Gay communities (as weird as that sounds).
So it was a huge shock for me to land at Marx Dormoy, a district which has a cut-throat reputation, with the view of the train tracks and the projects. Add to this the fact that people were describing the metro stations as the home of the crackheads of the city, I was freaking out.
The highlight of this district; right in front of my flat, was the Halle Pajol, a former SNCF (the French train company) warehouse, totally rehabilitated recently with new cool restaurants.
Bob’s Bake Shop is an american-inspired café-boulangerie, whose specialty is the bagel. Everything is fresh and homemade, you can even see the artisans preparing their future creations.
For breakfast, opt for a cream-cheese bagel (an New York classic), a house chia-pudding, or a homemade granola.
For lunch, you must try the bagel sandwiches, they are delicious! My favorite one; the tomato-avocado-cream cheese and oignons, but you can pick another garnish: feta and veggies, humus, salmon…
The cakes, also inspired by American food, are super yummy for snacking: Key Lime Pie, Wedding Cookies, Cheesecake, Brownies…and, my indulgence, the famous red fruits American Pie.
The bonus of this place: the little terrasse, which faces the sun when the days are beautiful!
We stay in the American theme, with the Deli Drop, an american deli/ concept store which offer a great selection of classic american food (some of them you won’t find anywhere else in Paris): Kraft Mac&Cheese, PopTarts, Jack Daniels’s bbq sauce, and Lucky Charms cereals.
Even more, the Delidrop carries International edgy media, all sorts of cool gadgets for adults and children, fashion and accessories, skate-boards, original stationary…
On site, you can have a delicious (but fatal for your butt) hot dog (Delidrop has a menu of 4 original recipes) , an american coffee, or a pastry, in the new cozy café space.
Parisian already know about this place, which was the very first to come settle in the Halle Pajol.
LPG offers a diversified menu, with different inspirations: USA (the Pork Ribbs, the burger, the salted cheesecake), world food (Indonesian meatballs, which I recommend!), or healthy food (the quinoa salad with vegetables).
Les Petites Gouttes also differentiates from other Parisian restaurant with its industrial and destroyed decoration, and its daily musical programming.
The bonus: the Sunday brunch, an “all you can eat” buffet, with scrambled eggs, bacon, all kinds of salads and potatoes, crepes and muffins… but think of reserving a few days before!
The weakness: the service, worthy of French reputation. Mean, inefficient, deeply unsympathetic (except Chloe who works lunch and makes you forget about the others lack of good service) . But, since the place has a huge terrasse in the sun, Parisian people forgive this and the place is always packed.
Well, now that I teased you, you must go there and try it for yourself!
26 Esplanade Nathalie Sarraute