Parler Paris and Parler Nice are long-standing brands of the Adrian Leeds Group. They are in no way associated with the social platform Parler, nor do they share any of the philosophies of that platform.

Your taste of life in Paris!

Subscribe and don't miss an issue!

Partying In Paris

People in Paris party. Even in small apartments and tight
spaces, there is usually a bottle of champagne cooling in
the fridge of any "respectable" Parisian household, ready
to uncork on any occasion.

I have parties all the time. In fact, during the spring
Travel Writers’ workshops, 40 participants and guests came
for dinner and a lecture (three times during three
workshops). I had another party on New Year’s Eve
2000…but of course! And this past weekend for my big
five-oh, yet another.

Thanks to a good-sized living room, a parquet floor for
dancing and "traiteurs" nearby, putting a party together
for a mere 40 to 50 friends is a snap.

No, a "traiteur" is not a "traitor." Strangely enough,
according to
"Traiteur was the last name of a famous general in
Napoleon’s Army who was caught in a great scandal. His name
became synonymous with acting in poor faith. Until that
time, such folk were called ‘Benedict Arnolds.’ This
appellation was considered too long, but simply calling
people ‘Arnie’ didn’t seem to convey the appropriate
sentiment. The term ‘traiteur’ quickly became more popular,
particularly in the Americas, but became best known in the
form ‘traitor.’ This was primarily because nobody in the
Americas at the time could spell."

Nonetheless, a "traiteur" is basically a "caterer,"
although they don’t HAVE to come to your home to cater your
party. There are shops all over town that sell prepared
foods, all ready to just unwrap their packages, place
prettily on a plate, add a serving utensil and voila–you
have a party!

There are 578 "traiteurs" listed in the Yellow Pages in
Paris alone. Some of the finest "traiteurs" in Paris are
shops such as Lenôtre (, Hediard
(, Flo Prestige
(, although every
neighborhood is sure to have a few with excellent "patés,"
"saucissons," and "charcuteries," "fromages" and
"desserts." One-stop-shopping…no cooking, no mess.

Every good French host is familiar with Picard Surgelé.
Picard is a large chain of 469 antiseptic-looking specialty
stores all over France selling frozen food products and
nothing else. Not to be deterred by the fact that their
products are all frozen, the quality is top notch. I am
particularly fond of their "Paella au poulet et aux fruits
de mer"–for 6.08 euro and 17 minutes of stove-top cooking,
you can feed two or three and it’s surprisingly delicious.
To find the shop nearest you, visit their website at

There are also specialty "rotisseries" all over town.
You’ll see a roaster parked outside almost every butcher
shop, with skewered chickens turning against the heating
elements, dripping their juices into the tray below…but
it’s not the same quality as the chicken from a specialty
rotisserie. Bernard Blanchard at 31 rue de Bretagne (tel. is my neighborhood favorite. M. Blanchard
roasts everything from chicken to rabbit to duck to pork.
Get ’em while they are hot and be sure to ask for plenty of
"jus!" Another one where you will find finger-lickin’ good
chicken (heavily herbed) is Philippe Divay’s at 4 rue Bayen
in the 17th (tel. We affectionately called
Philippe "Monsieur Poulet" all the years we lived in that
neighborhood and came home with one, at least once a week.

So, in just an hour or so of canvassing your shopping
street, a party can be made with little effort. Just ask
your friends to bring a bottle, and they’ll easily show up
toting champagne or wine, or, like an Italian friend of
mine, a bottle of virgin olive oil.

A la prochaine fois,


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Parler Paris
Written and Edited by Adrian Leeds

Published by International Living
E-mail: [email protected]

Issue Number 60, October 14, 2002

In this issue:

*** American Mothers Traumatized by Their Children in
French Schools
*** Unleash Your Creative Potential in 10 Short Weeks
*** Take to the Streets of Paris with the Experts
*** A Poem for the Métro
*** The "Hall" at Percy’s Plays it "Smooth" Saturday Night
*** Get Personality Plus in Four Simple Letters
*** Puttin’ on the Plays in Paris at Carr’s
*** Now You Can Do Your Marketing After Hours
*** The Place to See and Be Seen in Paris

by Rose Marie Burke

It’s a nightmare for many an English-speaking "maman" to
even think about sending their little ones to school in
France. In her book "French Toast," Harriet Welty Rochefort
writes that "American mothers with children in French
schools are much more traumatized by the whole experience
than their kids are." She sent her boys to French public
schools since the age of two. They survived wonderfully.
One is now in a "grande école" (a state-supported
university for the elite) and the other is in a French
university, and she lived to write about it. Her book is
recommended reading for those who want to understand the
cultural differences of Franco-American family life, tongue
in cheek.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Harriet Welty Rochefort will be touching on
the subject at the upcoming International Living Working
and Living in France Conference October 18 – 21
following Nancy Caldwell’s* session on EDUCATING THE KIDS.

* NANCY CALDWELL is an American consultant who has been
living and working in France for over 25 years. Having
raised two bi-cultural children in Paris, she is extremely,
if not sometimes painfully aware of the differences between
the French and U.S. school systems.

In her professional life, she runs her own business,
Caldwell Consulting, which designs and provides training
and coaching to major international corporations in the
fields of negotiation, intercultural management,
communication skills, and creativity. Her work has taken
her all over Europe, to the U.S. and even to Singapore. She
also publishes her research in the field of intercultural
negotiation in specialized journals.

Merging her experience as a parent who experienced the
French school system through her children and her
professional consulting experience, Nancy Caldwell holds
the position of Maître de Confèrence at HEC, one of
France’s prestigious grandes écoles. At HEC she teaches in
the undergraduate and MBA programs.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Whether you are a writer, artist, actor, business
professional, or simply want to experience more creativity
in your life, the ARTIST’S WAY course will help you unleash
your creative potential. Based on the empowering and
internationally best-selling book by Julia Cameron, you
will be lead through a comprehensive 10-week program to
recover your creativity from a variety of blocks or other
inhibiting forces, replacing them with artistic confidence
and productivity.

Taught by LIZBETH (LIBBY) ROBINSON for six years, she holds
an M.A. in Organizational Development and Transformation,
is a Senior Partner at Soul Works International and the
Executive Director of The Center for Awareness and Action,
a non-profit center dedicated to personal and professional
development. She has been adjunct faculty at the California
Institute of Integral Studies and has lectured on
leadership and personal mastery in Europe, the U.S.A., and

The course begins November 7 (with a preview evening on
October 23) and runs for 10 Thursday evenings with a break
for the winter holy-days. The course is limited to 15
participants, so get in contact early.

The cost of the Study Group series is 375 euro plus
membership to The Center for Awareness and Action (40 euro
for the year). To register, or for more information, visit or contact Libby Robinson
at tel.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Libby Robinson is speaking about Recreating
Your Career at the upcoming International Living Working
and Living in France Conference, October 18-21.


Enjoy Paris while learning, s

trolling, and visiting. These
tours may be reserved by an individual or a group of up to
20, scheduled at any time, depending on the availability of
the guide. For more information, go to:

by Rose Marie Burke

Rediscover the romantic, authentic, and whimsical 18th
arrondissement of Paris by seeing the locations in the
quirky French film "Amelie From Montmartre." For more
information, visit:

by Elizabeth Reichert

Writers have been finding inspiration in Paris for
centuries, leaving unforgettable marks on the city’s cafés,
streets, and hotels. The 1920s saw the greatest influx of
expatriate writers when the so-called Lost Generation group
set-up their homes-away-from-home throughout the Left Bank.
For more information, visit:

by Elizabeth Reichert

Writers have always romanticized the City of Lights as a
woman, as a female topography one just can’t resist. Aragon
called Paris a "sleep-charmer." André Breton even referred
to the triangular Ile de la Cité as the sex of Paris. And
yet, throughout time, there have always been the real woman
of Paris, those writers whose stories have become part of
the very make-up that has made writing in France’s capital
such a fantastic myth. For more information, visit:

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

by Ethan Gilsdorf

I. Exiting the train a shock, brown painted eyebrows,
makeup overkill.
II. People too eager. Step on my body, go ahead. Escalator
III. Through a dull tunnel of people, accordion lifts,
inspires a Monday.
IV. Tight pants seated, filled full: it’s about marketing,
packaging the ass.
V. Finches shift along the platform, proving you exist.
Isn’t this enough?
VI. He reads the Bach score like a novel, hushed notes and
staves his forest.
VII. The escalator, waterfall frozen mid-step. Out of order
­ ha!
VIII. Fools? Not this drenched herd commuting, wretched yet
safe from trying the door.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ethan Gilsdorf is managing editor of Frank
(, a film and restaurant critic
for Time Out’s Paris office, and a regular contributor to
Poet and Writers, Literary Review of Canada, and Paris
Notes. One of the prime organizers of the upcoming WORLD
POETRY day, MARCH 21, 2003, soon you will be able to sign
up with Ethan for open mic readings…with special poetry
workshops, speakers, discussions, and readings the days
before and the days after, led by published poet, Cecilia
Woloch. To learn more about the upcoming event or to be put
on a special mailing list for the PARIS POETRY WORKSHOP,
send an e-mail to
mailto:[email protected]?subject=Poetry

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


This coming weekend, the Working and Living in France
Conference has Saturday night off from meetings–and lucky
for all of us that conference participant and smooth jazz
vocalist-guitarist FREDDIE HALL will be sharing his vocal
chords that night from 9 p.m. to midnight at PERCY’S
PLACE,. at 15 rue d’Auteuil in the 16th. It’s a small
place, so make your reservations early. Tel. For more about Freddie Hall, visit:

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Unlock the "secrets" to your REAL SELF, via THE
MYERS-BRIGGS TYPE INDICATOR with Rebecca Castleton, M.S.
Organization Development

More than a "personality test" yet less than a magic wand,
this paper-and-pencil assessment unearths the "true you"
and prepares you to successfully apply your unique
personality to your career, your relationships, and your

With a graduate degree in business psychology and a
certification for Myers-Briggs, Rebecca Castleton has
effectively used the MBTI for over 16 years, with hundreds
of individuals and corporations throughout the U.S.A.,
Europe, and Asia.

TUESday, OCTOBER 22, 2002 at 6:30 p.m. at AMCHAM FRANCE
sponsored by The Professional Women’s Task Force. This is a
"forfait" event for President’s Council and Corporate
Members. Other members: 30 euro; guests and "at the door":
40 euro.

For more information, or to sign up on the web on their
secure site, go to:

EDITOR’S NOTE: I took this course years ago and discovered
its amazing truth. You will, too! Not too surprising, my
"ENTJ" stands for Extraversion, Intuition, Thinking, and

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Play readings in English happen Sunday nights at Carr’s
Restaurant, 1 rue du Mont Thabor, 75001 Paris, at 7:30 p.m.
This month, see Lance Tait "Madagascar," "The Fall of the
House of Usher" (after Edgar Allen Poe) and "Never Let Them
See You Sweat" on October 20 and on October 27. For more
information, visit: or

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


They are calling it a "small revolution" in the daily lives
of Parisians. It’s a new authorization by the city to
extend the hours of the markets in Paris to fit more in
tune with the city’s lifestyle. Now Parisians will be able
to shop before and after work (except in the 16th
arrondissement which vetoed it!). New market hours are 7
a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. More news for
markets is the reservation of 10% of the space for
"produits biologiques," the creation of information booths,
and 6% of the space reserved for the handicapped.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


In the early 1920s, those artists who until then had lived
in Montmartre, emigrated to Montparnasse, which became the
artistic "capital" of Europe. Its cafés and brasseries were
where they met, a point that was not lost on Ernest Fraux
and his brother-in-law, René Lafon. These natives of
south-western France had for the past three years
successfully managed Le Dôme, and accordingly decided to
take over a firewood and coal depot located near the
intersection of boulevards Montparnasse and Raspail. The
site had an ideal surface of 800 square metres for anyone
wanting to build the biggest brasserie in Paris!

Two famous architects, Barillet and Lebouc, were
commissioned to carry out the work. The two new owners
decided to create one single large room, unlike the other
venues frequented by the artists of the time. Next, they
created a basement ballroom, and an open-air first-floor
restaurant called "La Pergola." This also had a terrace
where habitués could play pétanque, a French version of

For more about La Coupole, visit:

by Adrian Leeds
Author of the Leeds Good Value Guide to Paris Restaurants

Sure, every guide book lists La Coupole, a favorite meeting
place for great artists and writers since 1927, but their
fixed price menu specials are good value when you consider
the incomparable ambiance and great food. La Coupole has a
reputation for a place to "see and be seen"–and known by
some as a spot for older women to find interested younger
men! They don’t take reservations, so expect to wait a
while for your table, at the bar. For the best experience,
know that the seafood platters are a specialty, try their
"Soupe a l’oignon" (after 7:30 p.m.!) and if you like
Caesar Salad, it could easily be the best in Paris. Tony
Caputo writes: "We arrived around 10:00 p.m. to find a
one-hour wait. It was worth it. Waiters spoke English and
were extremely helpful. If one did not know, he would find
someone who did. Needless to say the food was great. This
cost a little more than the first night [La Ferme St.
Germain] but worth every penny of it." Stan and Nan Bozarth
wrote: " Excellent food, attentive service and the best
value…in our opinion. Also, a very interesting place to
people watch."

102 bd. du Montparnasse, Arrondissement 14
Tel., Fax
Métro Vavin
Only closed 2 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.
Two-course lunch menu with wine and coffee costs18.75 euro;
21.50 euro for a two-course late night menu from 11:30 p.m;
and a three-course menu with wine is 30.50 euro.


Leave a Comment

Let Us create a custom strategy for you

You can live or invest in France-now.

Property for sale

Read & Subscribe

Dive into more by reading Parler Nice & French Property Insider.

Better yet, subscribe to one or all and get the updates delivered to your inbox.

Global Money Services

Our contacts will help you invest in France.

Moneycorp a foreign exchange and international currency specialist
OFX Global logo

Join us at our monthly Après-Midi.

Become a part of the Paris community.

See Adrian on HHI

Find out how we can help you invest in your own piece of France.