My friend Susan Karp and her family are leaving Paris this week. She has most probably ticked more off her must-do-in-Paris list in the one year that she’s been here than I have in my twenty. For my birthday she invited me to Le Restaurant du Palais Royal, somewhere that I’ve always wanted to eat, so we had the pleasure of ticking it off our lists together.
After meeting at the fountain, then casually ambling through the sunny gardens of the Palais Royal, we strolled through the stone arcades checking out boutiques of covetable objects, until we reached the restaurant.
To seat us, the waiter led us through a gateway in the arcade onto the terrace which had a striped awning for a roof and the same stone as the arcade for a floor. We stepped down off the terrace to walk along a clackity wooden walkway laid on the dust to get to our table. Our table spanned the width of the terrace and the person looking out towards the gardens was slightly higher than the person facing the arcade, because of the sloping ground. In the space of a minute all these details made me feel that I was perched on a boat moored to a parisian colonnade.
My tartare once ran in a field, Susan’s once swam in the ocean. My desert was raspberries and cream whipped into a monolith, Susan’s was raspberries and cream fashioned into a hausmanian palace. (Excellent food). We discussed the pros and cons of living in Paris. Susan wass so funny about the cons about buying kids shoes that the the cons could have won out, but an unspoken argument won for the pros, a table in one of the best locations in the world.