Parisian breakfasts made of fresh baguette, butter, jam and croissants are great! They’re cliché but maybe that’s why we love them. From times to times I try to get a change and look for more original spots, it’s the Londoner in me. I found my happiness at Holy Belly café in the 10ème, off the Canal Saint-Martin.
How would you find it? Walk in rue Lucien Sampaix and make out the big crowd waiting outside a building. You’re there.
A brunch place with a line outside usually means it’s trendy. This makes Holy Belly the least Parisian place in Paris, aka THE place to be. Which is why I didn’t mind when I gave my name at the reception and was told I’d have to wait for 35-40minutes. Simply stepping in the place and seeing how buzzing it is inside is the promise of a great meal and I was not going to skip on that.
Fortunately, it was a lovely Sunday and we just had to occupy ourselves and hope to see lots of people with their stomachs full walk out of the place. On the bright side: they will serve you coffee while you wait!
After a long but worthwhile wait, we finally made it inside the promise land, where we sat at a high communal table and received wooden board menus. Could this be more London-ish? Needless to say, we felt at home. I mean! The place had booths!
The whole place breathed of hipster: vintage lightbulbs, pink himalayan sea salt, juices served in jam jars etc.
Our waitress took our order: pancakes for the Mister, poached eggs with mushrooms and baked goats cheese for the Mrs.
I’m going to speak in superlatives now, but the whipped cream on those pancakes was the best whipped cream I have every tasted.
As for my dish, it was perfect: perfectly poached eggs (check out that runny yolk action), perfectly crispy bread, perfectly garlicky mushrooms, and perfectly gooey and strong “crotin de chêvre”.
We’re both French so manners require we tell each other “bon appétit”, but I always follow that sentence with a less elegant “DIG IN!”
The Mister gave up on the pancakes before the end, but I am a committed eater and I had to not only finish mine, but make sure his place was empty too. It would have been rude to send back a non empty plate wouldn’t you agree?
We left Holy Belly with happy full bellies and walked it out along the Canal Saint-Martin – a Sunday stroll I can’t recommend more!
If you are/come to Paris and are looking for a change in the Parisian food scene, please, please head over to Belleville and go check out Holy Belly. I will say though: come early as it gets really busy.
19 rue Lucien Campais
Price: 25-40€ for two people