Le Petit Parisien
There are two Le Petit Parisien‘s. You’ll find the first one at 17 Wicklow Street in Dublin 2. This one celebrated its One Year Birthday back in October 2013. The second and newest Le Petit Parisien can be found next door and under the same roof as The Mercantile at 25 Dame Street in Dublin 2. I popped in to the Dame Street one the other day for a solo lunch and here’s how I got on …
When you’ve stopped drooling and trying to lick the gorgeous looking cakes and tartlets through the window, make your way inside and you’ll be greeted and seated. The front part of the café fills up quicker and there are two levels, one at ground level and one up a few steps. I chose to go up the few steps and sat just behind the open curtains to the rear of the café. It was nice to have the space. The walls of the café are adorned with vintage styled French posters and advertisements … mostly for ‘Absinthe’ which I refrained from as I was heading back to work after lunch and the ‘Le Petit Parisien’ newspaper. There are candles on the tables. It’s dimly lit but not too much. The counter displays a host of fresh pastries, bread and fruit along with the odd bottle of French wine for a touch of Frenchness. This Frenchness spreads to the ambience of the café and if the bits of overheard conversation were in french you could probably pretend you were there.
For lunch I opted for the Croque Monsieur from the Specials menu, €8.00 and a black coffee, €2.60. I love a good Croque Monsieur – Baked Ham, Béchamel Sauce, Emmental Cheese on Bread … tickles my fancy big time! The place was quite busy with one waitress taking orders and one barista servicing from behind the counter so I thought I might be waiting for some time. I wasn’t and service was efficient and pleasant. Perfect for when you’re on a lunchtime deadline.
The sandwiches are ‘Artisan’ and are pre-made. If you are veggie, you may be disappointed with the selection. If like me you’re not you’ll be delighted. My Croque Monsieur was a fine size and served with a small green salad. When I took my first bite I found it dry and crunchy. I liked the crunchy part but had hoped for more … I got it, the second bite was delicious and cheesy … my goodness was it good, I didn’t want it to end. The coffee came in a nice big cup, was tasty and was great value, especially as I got a gorgeous little ‘madeleine’ for free.
Conclusion: At €8.00 for the sandwich (the online menu states €7.00 – could that be for the Wicklow Street Café?) and €2.60 for my coffee, my lunch was a little on the pricey side for me for everyday lunching. Saying that, I enjoyed it so much and as it was nearly a meal in itself I will return for it. I made do with my free madeleine to satisfy my goo for sweetness, however when I return those little teasing tartlets in the window are getting in my belly.
For more information on Le Petite Parisien you can visit their website here www.lepetitparisien.ie