Travel

9th Arrondissement

Establishment neighborhood
Pink Mamma
20 bis Rue de Douai, 9th
A new-ish sister to the absurdly popular Ober Mamma, Pink Mamma is a welcome Italian-centric addition to the very French dining scene in Pigalle. The four flights that take you up to the most Instagrammable dining room—it has a giant skylight for a roof!—are well worth the sore legs. There are plants everywhere, haphazardly placed furniture, mixed prints—in fact, the whole place might as well have been airlifted from Rome, right down to the menu. House-made pasta, grilled proteins, and really excellent pizza.
À la Mère de Famille
35 Rue du Faubourg, 9th
The exterior of À la Mère de Famille—an emerald-green storefront with more windows than walls—looks like a jewelry box, or rather, a chocolate box; you can see the cakes and chocolates and towers of beautifully packaged bars from down the block. Open since 1761, one of the many pleasures of this particular confectioner is the breadth of old-world caramels, nougat, boiled sweets, and marshmallows. And nothing much has changed inside, either. Taking in the old tile floor, the floor-to-ceiling shelves stacked with preserves and syrups, and the elaborate table displays as you make your way to the ice cream counter (go for the chocolate) is an exercise in both nostalgic pleasure and calorie control.
Pierre Hermé
Galeries Lafayette, 40 Blvd. Haussmann, 9th
Parisians swear Pierre Hermé's macarons are the best in town, and we're inclined to agree. After all, the pastry wunderkind (he began his career as an apprentice to Gaston Lenôtre at the age of 14, before becoming the pastry chef of Fauchon when he was only 24) is known for infusing his ganaches with interesting (and foolproof) combinations, like his famous Ispahan, which blends rose, lychee, and raspberry. The chocolates shouldn't be missed either, and neither should the croissants.
Carmen
34 Rue Duperré, 9th
A wildly ornate bas-relief ceiling—moodily lit by Versailles-worthy chandeliers—is actually not the first indication that this isn't your average bar (that would be the gigantic birdcage at the entrance). Occupying the former mansion of composer Georges Bizet (hence the name, Carmen), this Pigalle club gets particularly busy around fashion week, when any number of designers host their after-parties here. While DJs play until 4 a.m. on weekends, the space hosts more-civilized affairs, too: For example, the literary magazine A Tale of Three Cities uses it to hold a monthly book club.
Palais Garnier
8 Rue Scribe, Place de l'Opera, 9th
Though it's arguably most famous for being the backdrop to Gaston Leroux's The Phantom of the Opera, its real acclaim comes from the fact that it's a stunningly opulent Second Empire masterpiece. While in its first life it was home to the Paris Opera, it now hosts the Ballet. It's absolutely worth making a night of it if only to see the Grand Foyer, plus The Palais harvests its own honey on the rooftop, which is served by two-starred chef Christophe Aribert in the recently opened restaurant, L’Opera.
Pierre Hermé
Galeries Lafayette, 40 Blvd. Haussmann, 9th
Parisians swear Pierre Hermé's macarons are the best in town, and we're inclined to agree. After all, the pastry wunderkind (he began his career as an apprentice to Gaston Lenôtre at the age of 14, before becoming the pastry chef of Fauchon when he was only 24) is known for infusing his ganaches with interesting (and foolproof) combinations, like his famous Ispahan, which blends rose, lychee, and raspberry. The chocolates shouldn't be missed either, and neither should the croissants.
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