“Paris-New York, the two high tension magnetic poles between life, life of the senses, of the spirit in Paris, and life in action in New York.” – Anaïs Nin
i woke up this morning and decided that today was the day to share one big change: i moved back to the states! i am currently sitting in a teeny-tiny studio squeezed on a corner in the west village of manhattan. i am slowly making this place into my new home and doing all that comes with that: finding my neighborhood bakery, exploring my new running path, wallpapering, and combatting a pair of mice that really wanted to be my new roommates.
some of my routine has definitely changed since being back stateside. i’m slowly getting used to larger, american portions. i see my family very regularly, with my oldest brother living just a 20 minute walk away! i remembered just how many people i knew in new york, and am social butterflying around this whole city.
but while my life seems to become more americanized (or back to normal) by the second, there are some things that i learned in france that i just can’t kick. the most important of these being: my morning bread.
most days my morning bread means just that, a hunk of bread smeared with butter or jam. but on my days off, my morning bread takes on a flakier, sweeter, buttery-er taste. be it a pain au chocolat or un croissant s’il vous plait, these laminated doughs are the hallmark of what i consider “how i start my day.” and luckily enough for me, i’ve found one truly french spot to continue this ritual here in my neighborhood.
meet aux merveilleux de fred:
the bakery is famous for their signature “merveilleuxs” [marvelous], lovely little clouds of meringue rolled in whipped cream and dotted with toppings like chocolate shavings or caramelized nuts. these i buy for special occasions. additionally, the bakery turns out a selection of viennoiserie and brioche. in france, you’ll find aux merveilleux de fred in most major cities, with heavy lines on weekends.
they have just one location in the u.s., and it is a 10 minute walk from my new home ! while fred’s is my most frequented french institution in new york, i have already stumbled upon and enjoyed so many others over the past few months. here is a little list for you:
aux merveilleux de fred 37 8th Ave, New York, NY 10014
marie blachere 301 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014
a.o.c. l’aile ou la cuisse 314 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014
le french diner188 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002
cafe select 212 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012
french cheese board 41 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
i have already had luck meeting french people and speaking french in all of these shops, and look forward to finding even more places to do so. do you know of any french institutions in new york? leave a comment if so!
Catherine! This is great news to me. The next time I’m in Brooklyn visiting my son and daughter-in-law, I’ll try to give you a heads-up beforehand in hopes that we can get together for an hour. I’m a faithful almond croissant addict, so maybe you could drag me around to a fancy patisserie or twelve.
I hope you’re enjoying getting re-Americanized and that NY is treating you gallantly.
A big hug and much love, as ever,