That French Feeling

A few friends and I met for brunch at a French café called Café Sauvage the other day. It was small but tastefully decorated, and it had the feeling of a European café because of its small round tables scrunched together, with groups of people sitting elbow to elbow, engaged in lively conversation. My friend noticed that the staff spoke to each other in French.

I ordered onion and cheese quiche, and it was heavenly. It had a lot of cheese, so it receives five stars in my book.

After we finished eating, we were whisked out so they could turn the table. We walked up and down Newbury Street to continue our conversation. I can’t remember the last time I’ve walked up and down that street, one of Boston’s most popular tourist spots. A lot of it was unrecognizable; many of the shops I knew have been gone awhile. But it always feels good to be in that neighborhood, because it was where my first job in Boston was located (and where I met said friends decades ago). It still feels like home.

One of my friends mentioned seeing a bakery on the other side of the street that she had been wanting to visit. Levain Bakery originated in New York City, and she had eaten the out-of-this-world cookies before. So we made our way to Levain. It was bustling with people ordering coffee drinks, bread, and cookies. Everything looked amazing. I ordered two dark chocolate cookies with peanut butter chips and a loaf of whole grain bread. When I was handed the bag of goodies, it felt like a bag of bricks. There was some weight to it.

Well, I love cookies, and these were some of the best cookies I’ve ever had. The flavor is incredible and the density is delightful. I will be making a special trip to buy these cookies, believe you me. The bread was also good…but there’s something about those cookies…

Visiting these French-inspired spots gave me a hankering to visit Paris again. I’ve only been there for a few days, back when I did a madcap three-week tour of Western Europe after a study abroad semester. I remember eating a lot of baguettes and chocolate; running around to phenomenal art museums (Louvre, Centre Pompidou, Rodin Museum); and going to the top of the Eiffel Tower, even though it was a completely gray and foggy day, and all we could see were clouds out the windows.

Do you have any French adventures to share?

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