When we arrived in Paris I was starving. I really needed some serious food and a glass of wine. Traveling does that to me sometimes. Alex was in even worse shape - not eating enough tends to leave him vaguely nauseous. I just get cranky. And I get progressively worse until I am fed. You don't have to point it out - I am well aware that I'm rather like a 3 year old in that respect. Unfortunately we arrived the afternoon of the same sex marriage protest and it was nearly impossible to get around. Luckily our hotel happened to be located near one of the restaurants that we wanted to try. We got a little lost on the way there but after about 10-15 minutes of walking/wandering we found Le Comptoir. Only there was a wait for a table. And we were too hungry to wait. So we decided to belly up to the counter at L'Avant Comptoir for some wine and snacks. Alex let me do the ordering while he polished off a crepe from their walk-up window outside. Actually, Alex let me do the ordering throughout our trip since I speak French and he doesn't. There were a few mistakes along the way, but I think my French served us remarkably well considering it has been years since I practiced.
Anyway, as soon as I looked at the menu cards dangling from the ceiling I couldn't resist ordering the pate (I have always had a weakness for pate), the pig ears (pate and pigs ears pictured below) and some sardines (pictured above). I also wanted to order the croquettes, but I wanted to see how big the other dishes were first. And then I forgot. I probably ate more pate than you should safely eat in a year but I have no regrets. It was deliciously porky and fattening. Strangely enough, the sardines were my favorite of the dishes. They were buttery, fresh and delicious. And the butter they used in the sauce wasn't just regular butter but Bordier's salted butter, which is absolutely fantastic. I loved those sardines. And I dredged the bread all through the sauce because you really can't waste the butter. It made me so happy. Oh and I can't talk about dining in Paris without mentioning the wine. I had a blast trying a bunch of different wines by the glass. At L'Avant Comptoir we tried two different reds by the glass, but as the trip wore on we became far bolder about ordering lots of different wines by the glass. If only the wines in the United States were as wonderfully plentiful, tasty and cheap by the glass. Or by the carafe. Being able to buy quality wine by the bottle, large carafe, small carafe and by the glass is amazing.
More after the jump!