Wednesday, March 31, 2010

MERCI !







MERCI … beaucoup! Literally, I plan to go to Merci, beaucoup (a lot) in the future. I’m of course referring to the vintage boutique Merci, located in Paris’ 3rd arrondissement. The concept store from the people who brought us the Bonpoint empire, Marie-France and Bernard Cohen, offers fabulous (expensive, but fabulous nevertheless) vintage clothing and accessories in a hipster-chic setting. From the flower shop to a bookstore coffee shop to the cobblestone courtyard, Merci is an escape from the busy Paris streets. Plus, all of the profits, production costs deducted, go straight to a children’s charity in Madagascar. The best part ? On the lower level, Merci’s restaurant offers healthy, “ladies who lunch”-like mid-day meals overlooking a cute little garden. Enjoy a plate of the day’s latest salads as you run into French movie stars from the neighborhood (like the ravishing Emmanuelle Devos who has been there every time I have) or fashionistas (and a few select fashionistos, but I must warn that the female:male ratio here is about 10:1). The plate of the day’s seasonal vegetables and salad offerings – think: quinoa salad with lemon, green beans with hazelnuts and orange zest, potatoes and capers and mushrooms and celery or lentils with parsley for example – is surprisingly good, and I highly recommend their fruit juice blends and delectable desserts like a pistachio and red berry crumble or fromage blanc with honey and pistachios. Head over there and I promise you’ll be telling me “merci!” for the fabulous recommendation.