I’m the kind of girl who doesn’t need a bouquet of flowers in order for you to show me that you love me… just cook me good food… with lots of love. Food has been weaving together stories of love for centuries and when I think of romance and food… Paris is the first place that comes to mind. From romantic walks, to french kisses in the park, to sharing a baguette with your lover at a cozy café, Paris is where foodies and hopeless romantics meet for that Parisian magic. And yes, I am one of those hopeless romantics, and a foodie.
Nestled in a little part of New Jersey, in a town called Metuchen, you will find Café Paris which is owned and operated by a family who decided to open a Paris Café as homage to their homeland. Café Paris first opened in Cranford, New Jersey in 2001 and a second location was opened in Metuchen, New Jersey in 2004. With two locations under their belt, there is nothing cookie cutter about Café Paris. Both locations, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, gives you its own unique Parisian experience. Café Paris is a neighborhood gem that doesn’t take itself too seriously, there’s no overly done décor, just a simple Paris Café in the heart of Metuchen and Cranford, with walls hand painted to portray a street in Paris with Parisian music playing like a beautiful lullaby in the background.
My dining experience was definitely an unforgettable one, I was after all celebrating one of my two birthdays. Some people are lucky enough to have one birthday, I’m fortunate enough to have two, April 1st and June 29th. With that said, I had very high expectations of Café Paris and I’m glad to say that they lived up to the hype. So what do you do when you’re in Paris or should I say when you find yourself in a Paris Café in New Jersey? Well…you eat like a king…in my case like a Queen.
The menu is pretty extensive, and the entrees are extremely large, and I shamelessly tried a little bit of everything. For you meat lovers, my starter of the Boeuf Bourguignon, beef marinated in red wine with bacon, carrots, onions and mushrooms served with dreamy mashed potatoes with the jus lightly drizzled on top was flavorful and cooked to perfection. The Boeuf Bourguignon was so perfect that I think I shed a tear or two out of sheer joy. For you vegetarians, Sandwich A L’ Aubergine, grilled bread egg-plant and fresh mozzarella cheese, was absolutely amazing. For you non-vegetarians, I recommend the Galette A L’Epinard, fresh spinach, mushrooms, roasted peppers, goat cheese, served with bechamel sauce and a choice of fresh mixed greens or fresh fruit salad.
And just when I came to a point where I could not eat another bite of food, the waitress mercilessly brings a dessert menu that not even this sweetaholic could handle. The choices were plenty, portions large, and the aroma of sugar, chocolate, and fresh fruits swirling in the air…. absolutely intoxicating. My stomach said no, but my eyes said maybe, and the voice in my head said absolutely! So I did what any smart woman would do, I loosen my belt and had crepes.
If you’re interested in discovering Paris in Metuchen or Cranford New Jersey…Café Paris is located at 439 Main Street Metuchen, NJ 08840. For more information go to www.thecafeparis.com…And oh, while you’re at it…Enjoy the Parisian Music List Below.