When I’m not binging on a three- or five-course meal, I love just nibbling on some cheese or pizza—which I’ve also been doing a lot of lately.
Maria Luisa: 2, rue Marie-et-Louise, 10eme
Went with: Jo and Olivier on a Thursday night
Had: I got the vegetarian, which, I forgot had mushrooms on it, so I spent more time picking out the insidious fungi than I did enjoying the mozzarella and aubergine. Jo’s margarita was nice and simple—proof that pure ingredients, nine times out of ten are the way to go. Olivier’s pizza du jour was a white pie with spinach and sausage.
Impressions: The space was cute, the staff was sweet, the menu was massive, the anticipation was great… but the pizza was ordinary. Overall, a nice spot to sample, but no need to rush over.
La Briciola: 64, rue Charlot, 3eme
Went with: Sarah on a Monday night
Had: We split an amazing caprese pizza. The sweet sauce, beautiful mozzarella and modest basil leafs were pitch-perfect individually and especially together. We also split a nice bianca pizza, piled high with rocket, slightly stewed cherry tomatoes and parm. Yummy pizza.
Impressions: Lovely little neighborhood spot with a chic Haute-Marais crowd. It was full (bonus points: they’re open Monday nights) and the bartender was cute. And, hey, great pizza!
La Trinquette: 67, rue des Gravilliers, 3eme
Went with: Sarah on a Tuesday night
Had: Un plat mixte: a little fromage pour moi, a little chacturie and paté for Sarah, great olives, and even a tapenade that was mild enough so as to not turn my stomach, all served on/with doughy Eric Kayser bread. Perfect.
Impressions: This place, not even two months in, already has a serious fan base. It’s always jammed with fabulous, young Frenchies, and it feels homey and alive in a way that usually only comes with heritage. The three young guys who opened it specialize in Southern France and know their goods. I'm glad this is in my 'hood.