Café Chilango

What you get: Mexico meets Paris. Huevos rancheros + chilaquiles + tacos + fresh juice +  famous house-made granola sprinkled over fromage blanc

Chilango could be Paris’ chillest brunch and booze spot. This Mexican hangout is halfway between Republique and Parmentier in the young and food-centric Folie-Méricourt neighborhood. Exposed-brick walls, bright modern artwork, and hanging plants call to mind a Manhattan studio apartment. A cocktail bar in the evening, the space transforms into a light-filled Sunday brunch spot for those recovering from a night at the nearby clubs.

Brunch at Chilango is a great deal at 19 euros for a hot drink, freshly-pressed jus du jour, granola with fromage blanc, and a main dish. The huevos rancheros – corn tortillas topped with eggs, tomato and chili sauce, onions, and queso fresco – is a popular plate, as is the chilaquiles with refried beans and plenty of sour cream and cheese. Tacos include a traditional fish taco, chili-chicken, and black refried beans. And portions are generous.

The decor is abstract-Mexican-kitsch. Plastic superhero figures line a shelf above the coffee bar and the walls are covered with colorful skulls, mustached men, and crucified Jesus figures. For a peek see Julie’s photos on A Paris Food Affair.

Café Chilango
82 Rue de la Folie Méricourt, 75011 Paris
01 47 00 78 95
Brunch from 11:30am to 4pm on weekends 

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Coutume

 

What you get: Paris’ best cappuccino + thick pancakes with berries, ricotta, and pistachios + yogurt and granola + eggs Benedict with smoked trout + toasted banana bread with mascarpone and fruit + pretty cakes and cookies

Coutume served as my neighborhood coffee house and Wifi base for the past year in Paris, and it was only recently that I got around to ordering brunch here. I’m only sad I didn’t do it sooner.The portions are large and the flavors in my red berry and banana pancakes were typically Coutume — studied, sweet, and fruit-forward. Pistachios are tossed on everything, which is absolutely fine by me. Also good for a brunch-on-the-go are the tasty baked banana loaf and tasty cakes in the display case. Come to Coutume with an appetite because you will want to sample everything.

The café embraces a pretty, sparse, Scandinavian interior dotted with green plants and beakers serving as water pitchers. Some of Paris’ best coffee is brewed at this counter by the friendly bilingual baristas and delivered to community tables where busy freelancers (and me) tap away at their laptop keys. Word on the street is that they sometimes serve a terrific breakfast burrito on their monthly menu, so a trip back is definitely called for.

For more on Coutume, check out my featured review on Travel + Lust.

Coutume
47 rue de Babylone, 75007 Paris
01 45 51 50 47
Brunch from 11am to 4pm on weekends. Delicious breakfast with comparable plates served weekdays until 11am.

  

Paperboy

  

What you get: a choice of fruits and vegetables in a tall freshly-pressed juice (carrot and orange is a sure winner) + a generous bread basket with house made peanut butter and nutella + your pick of brunch plates depending on hunger levels (Le Fatty for starving people or men in general, Le Healthy for people who like granola, etc.)

A café tucked into a quiet street just south of Republique, Paperboy brings the American brunch ambiance. The large open windows are lined with boxes of fresh produce, and the wood and white tile accents inside contribute to a bright and sunny Sunday ambiance. Featuring a large selection of brunch options, Paperboy nails all the favorites. A large bowl of granola and fromage blanc pairs with the traditional French soft-boiled eggs; avocado toast with fresh fruit and salad; a bacon and egg breakfast sandwich with baked beans and pancakes; Eggs Benedict with salmon or bacon. Paperboy is a crowd pleaser.

We came on a Saturday to celebrate a friend’s final days in Paris and were seated next to a table of hungover Parisian moms downing fruit juices and coffee. The service was typical of Paris, but the food was delicious and portions generous. All brunch options come with a hot drink (I’m told the hot chocolate is good as well!), juice, and so much bread. A great value for 24€.

Paperboy
137 Rue Amelot, 75011 Paris
01 43 38 12 13
Brunch Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

  

    

Liza

    

What you get: Lebanese breakfast spread with different kinds of hummus + tabouli + the creamiest natural yogurt with olives + warm pita and falafel + kibbeh + endless coffee and pulpy fresh fruit juice + the most amazing knafeh for dessert

Brunch at Liza is like being invited to your Lebanese neighbors’ apartment for a birthday party. Although there’s no smiling grandmother filling your plate with seconds and thirds, you’ll probably be doing that on your own. Just a short walk from Paris’ Palais Royal is an exotic little gold and white dining room with floor-to-ceiling windows that let in soft light on a Sunday morning. Opened by Liza Asseily over ten years ago, the restaurant enabled the Beirut-born socialite to bring Lebanon to Paris. An outpost of the restaurant is located in the Galeries Lafayette and Liza has recently opened another venture in a former palace in Beirut.

The open sweet and savory brunch buffet at Liza is generous and everything is so delicious that you’ll want to sample a bit of each dish. Start your meal moderately with a small plate of fresh tabouli or fattoush and a few savory tarts, and then embrace the free-for-all where you fight your best friend for the last steaming kibbeh meatball.

Finish off any remaining yogurt or hummus with warm pita and then return for a plate of sweets. The dessert spread features bite-sized honey and nut pastries as well as fresh fruit, pudding and confiture covered in a nest of shredded phyllo, and knafeh. This last mind-blowing dessert is a slice of buttery phyllo crust covering a stretchy warm cheese similar to mozzarella. The cake is then drizzled with a rose and orange blossom syrup. Don’t miss out.

Liza
14 Rue de la Banque, 75002 Paris
01 55 35 00 66
Sunday brunch from 12 p.m. to 3:30 p.m for 31

      

Celebrating 15 Years of Le Fooding: Pur Brunch at Hôtel Amour

    

It’s about 9 p.m. and I’m still full from this morning’s beautiful brunch at Hôtel Amour. The weekend has been one long celebration of 15 great years with Le Fooding guide to Paris’ best bistronomic restaurants. The influential guide organized a fun-filled three-day birthday bash starting Friday night with great music and streetfood at La Rotonde Stalingrad and continuing Saturday evening with delicious small plates from some of the world’s best restaurants, served up among the antique furniture stands at the Saint-Ouen flea markets. For me, the weekend culminated with Sunday brunch at Paris’ oldest love hotel in Pigalle.

What we got: creative dishes by Menilmontant’s Marc Bretillot + freshly-baked madeleines from London’s St. John Bread & Wine + no-limit Nespresso coffee

Brunch began at 3 p.m. with fresh mint lemonade and a hearty chocolate, nut, and raisin bread served with yuzu butter, much appreciated at our table. Next came a canteen-style tray with soft-boiled egg, olive bread, ham, salad, and chocolate ganache. A pretty dish of warm madeleines and endless self-serve Nespresso allongés rounded out the meal. We lingered two hours under the green ivy at Hôtel Amour’s charming courtyard terrace.

While this was a one-time event, the hotel restaurant serves their own brunch menu on Sundays and I wouldn’t mind passing another warm weekend afternoon on Paris’ greenest terrace.

Hôtel Amour
8 Rue Navarin, 75009 Paris
01 48 78 31 80
Open everyday from 8 a.m. to midnight; brunch on Sundays
    

La Chambre aux Oiseaux

 

What you get: “Brunch Time!” Includes bread basket and confiture (including raisin and hazelnut bread) + freshly pressed OJ + endless coffee that you can refill yourself + HUGE plate with soup, salad, ham, cheese, a soft-boiled egg, and hopefully a spinach soufflé + wait there’s also dessert!

Possibly my new favorite brunch in Paris. On a quiet street just off of Canal St. Martin sits La Chambre aux Oiseaux, a beautiful, bright little café filled to bursting with tables and armchairs. Packed on weekends, your best bet is to make a reservation if you’re brunching with friends.

Or you can (like me) stumble upon this by accident and try your luck with the tables outside. These are filled on a first come first serve basis. Come early, look hungry, stare at people on the terrace until they get uncomfortable enough to pay and leave. The cozy bench to the right of the door provides the perfect place to tuck into an enormous brunch plate and read the morning away.

A little suggestion: just before a solo brunch, stop just across the  Canal at design bookstore Artazart for some independent artsy magazines to flip through while enjoying your orange juice.

La Chambre aux Oiseaux
48 Rue Bichat, 75010 Paris
01 40 18 98 49
Open Wednesday-Sunday from 10am to 6pm. Brunch for 23€ on weekends.

  

Lockwood 

  

What you get: many bloody marys with fresh dill and red peppercorns + peanut and salted caramel pancakes + eggs Benedict and eggs Florentine

A stylized coffee shop meets café canteen meets restaurant with apero and cocktails. Lockwood is a little of everything, a little dark inside, and a little undecided as to its raison d’être. Still, it’s a fun place to hang out.

Sunday brunch features the expected pancakes, eggs and toast, optional bacon, granola and yogurt, fresh fruit. We were a little disappointed with stale toast, Bisquik pancakes, and floppy bacon. But the pancakes were doused in caramel and the bloody marys pretty and original.

A quiet atmosphere practically next door to Frenchie To Go and just north of Paris’ hopping rue Montorgueil.  We’ve got high hopes for some unique additions to the brunch menu in the coming months.

Lockwood
73 Rue d’Aboukir, 75002 Paris
01 77 32 97 21
Open Monday-Saturday 8am-2am; Sunday brunch 10am-4pm.