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We just paid our first visit of this hott summer to the Easton Farmers’ Market and stopped at the Third Street Café for brunch. We were initially looking for breakfast and almost chose The Quadrant due to Third Street’s switching to the lunch menu around 11. Turns out they’ve switched things around and now offer brunch till noon, overlapping that menu with lunch. That meant lots of tasty options. I almost went for the country breakfast sampler of eggs, sausage and buttermilk pancakes but switched to the gooey awesome melt below – ham, apples and brie on French toast. So good but tough to eat – it was hard to keep the big pieces of apple from sliding out. My wife had the spinach and artichoke omelet. Everything is always fresh, simple and full of flavor. You gotta try this place for lunch.

We wish they offered dinner on Friday/Saturday evenings – not just the café menu – to sample the full breadth of the chef’s repertoire. My impression is that the kitchen might not be equipped to handle a serious dinner, but a limited menu might be doable, no? Maybe prix fixe? I’d be the first to sign up.

I finally had a chance to sort through all 1800 pics (!) to share our French gastronomic experience. These won’t mean much to anyone here looking for Lehigh Valley restaurant reviews, but who doesn’t love looking at photos of great food?!

Our first meal – a French breakfast and an “English” breakfast. The omelet made it “English.” We’re big breakfast people so we had to get used to the limited selection. You quickly learn to love a toasted baguette with a slathering of butter and jam.

Our first dinner. The steak haché (chopped steak) with a fried egg is a very common menu item. And the first of many plates of pommes frites.

The day trip to Champagne is highly recommended.

Two ever-present elements – sandwiches made for walkin’ around and Orangina.

Gotta love the veggies steamed and served in the mason jar.

A disappointing dessert – fromage blanc with honey. It was more acidic and clumpy than expected. And my strawberry milkshake was really runny and really expensive.

Lunch at The Louvre. My wife didn’t capture the cool little prawns or the slab of gelatinized seafood on the far side of the plate.

My beef bourguignon was amazing but it looks like crap in this pic – literally.

A visit to the Mouffetard market to assemble a picnic meal.

Does including the feathered head make this bird more appetizing?

Stumbled upon a nice Italian restaurant near the Trocadero across the river from the Eiffel Tower. A pile of seafood – my wife’s favorite. And a disassembled lasagna with smoked salmon for me. Fantastic.

A delicious banana and Nutella crêpe and a perfect waffle.

I’d seen this “flan natur” at a few patisseries and finally got one on a walk around Montmartre where we had another picnic outside Picasso’s studio.


One of our favorite meals just off the Champs-Élysées. The French cook steak much more rare than Americans are used to, and our waiter asked me if I wanted it “medium” – our “rare.” I surprised him by requesting it “bleu” – the descriptor for super-rare that i’ve been waiting to use for 15 years. I’d guess they cooked it maybe 30 seconds on each side. I loved it.

A common dessert option is the “tarte du jour.” Today’s was pear – simple and perfect.

Another banana and Nutella crêpe. Not as good as the first.

I had my eye on these enormous meringues near our hotel. This one was raspberry. Not as good as hoped.

We finally made our way over to Berthillon and waited in a looong line to get my hands on some rhubarb sorbet. Then they ran out of it when we were 10 feet from the counter.

We ended up with hazelnut, chocolate-orange, pear and almond. Don’t you love these double cones?!

Duck confit and frites in disc form. So great.

A kinda OK backdrop for our last picnic. A selection of Italian meats and cheeses plus a rhubarb-raspberry tart.

A return to Berthillon in search of rhubarb. Also coconut, nougat and dark chocolate.

For our final dinner, we tried to find a brasserie with the 3 French dishes we’d not tried all week – then we ordered all of them! Steak tartare, escargot and onion soup. Seems like a weird combo but it all worked together somehow.

In general, we found the food to be rather simple and straightforward. Flavors were fresh and clean without a lot of seasoning. We visited only moderately priced bistros, choosing not to splurge on any of the pricier restaurants where you’d likely find a greater level of complexity in their haute cuisine. Not surprisingly, due to the simple prep, the bistro food often arrived within 4-6 minutes after ordering. Impressive. The one downside was the amount of smoking in the outdoor cafés (and everywhere else for that matter). If you want to people-watch and absorb some Paris atmosphere be prepared to absorb a bit of secondhand smoke as well. You get used to it after about a week. Then it’s time to fly home. sigh

Just got back from the Philly flower show. We hit the Reading Terminal Market before and after for a bite to eat. For breakfast, we found the longest line in the joint at Profi’s Crêperie. I had turkey bacon, egg, cheddar cheese and spinach. My wife and her sis split a buckwheat crêpe with strawberries and honey.

We spent the next few hours at the flower show. Some really impressive installations and beautiful specimens. Plus tons of vendors. Being the last day of the show, we found a lot of sales. I picked up some dwarf plants with bonsai potential – including a South African Fig with tiny pea-sized fruits.

Back at the Terminal for dinner, we got in another long line – this time at Dinic’s for their wicked roast pork. I got mine with roasted peppers, broccoli rabe, and provolone. That’s a big, tasty sandwich.

The Promenade Shops is an outdoor mall in Saucon Valley (just south of Bethlehem) with a bunch of great dining options. If you have the time, definitely try Melt or White Orchids. But if you’re looking for something quick and affordable, we recommend Pandini’s. They offer salads, pasta, small pizzas and their signature Labretti sandwiches – basically a freshly baked pizza crust filled with toppings and folded in half. Everything is made to order and very flavorful. The portions are good too.

I had the Pesto Chicken Labretti and my wife had The Florence pizza. On an earlier visit, we tried the Mushroom Marsala Penne and can recommend that as well.

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  • the red and black
    For many Junes, this was my favorite cocktail. Yes, I realize that I sound particularly like a weird food writer person and not a person who lives among other people because most normal, sane people do not have a favorite cocktail for each month of the year, even if you agree with me — you do, right? –that a Perfect Manhattan is the ideal way to warm up on t […]

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