Our trip in Kosher Paris

By Cheryl Hirsch-Ginsberg, July 2001

We (My four children and myself) just returned from a wonderful trip to Paris. We stayed at Hotel Lebron. While not fancy, it definitely suited our needs, and the staff was generally very accommodating. There was no air conditioning, but the weather was fine and we could keep our windows open at night to get a wonderful breeze (something we are unable to do in Houston where we go from too hot to too cold in a matter of hours). A nice amenity were the refrigerators in each room which enabled us to purchase food for seudah shlishit and for after the fast of 17 Tammuz.
We ate Friday night dinner at the Beth El Synagogue location (which allowed us to prepay Friday afternoon). The meal was very tasty and the atmosphere was very heimishe, with a d'var torah and singing during the meal. For Saturday lunch we ate at Les Ailes which was definitely a more formal atmosphere. I definitely think Les Ailes would get my vote for the best restaurant we ate at during our stay. They also had a nice array of take out food which I purchased for my exhausted children the first night we were there when they were too tired to leave the hotel. It turns out that many of the shuls serve seudah shlishit so that you can eat at the shul of your choice is you don't want to purchase food in advance. I found that there was a nice small grocery store on Rue Cadet close to Rue La Fayette (like a makolet in Israel) where I purchased our seudah shlishit supplies. They have a few hebrew bumper stickers to mark their spot. When we arrived and were waiting for our room to be ready we ate at King Solomon, which also provided a very tasty dairy meal. For fast fleishich food which was tasty and quick we went to Berbeche Burger. Their excellent shwarma provided our break fast meal, (purchased before the fast ended since I wasn't sure they would be open late, 10:35pm when the fast ended). Our Saturday night pre fast meal was provided by Casa Rina (good pizza and pasta) which was one of the few restaurants open after Shabbat (ended 11pm). There is a parev bakery a few doors up from Casa Rina which had a very good looking array of items, including parev ice cream. However, my kids noticed that the pastries are not as sweet as here, and didn't care for them as much. (I really enjoyed their brownies though, and my little boy loved the ice-cream after his steak dinner from Berbeche Burger.
While I was attending my medical meetings my kids found a sandwich shop where they purchased tuna fish sandwiches "for the road" and they managed to find Pizza stores near the Jewish museum and the Salvador Dali museum. I took them to Fradji which was near the convention center (Porte Maillot). I enjoyed my meal (tuna steak sephardi style with a fried egg, tomato relish and rice) and the waiters were very nice. I also took my older son to Nini Japon (also in the same area) for a sushi lunch, which was very enjoyable.
My son davened Friday night at Synagogue Beth El (Sephardi). He found a very nice Ashkenazi shul on Rue Cadet where he went for Shacharit and Mincha/Seudah Shilshit/Maariv/Havdalah. (They let my younger son (6 years old) hold the havdalah candle since he was the youngest there). My younger son and I went to the Grande synagogue de la Victoire for mincha, which is really magnificent. It is closely guarded and you must enter from a side street (Rue St Georges, I think). I was very impressed here because they let my son dress the torah. (Before this the only thing he ever did in shul was play).
If you go with kids there is a nice park at the corner of Rue Montholon and Rue La Fayette. We also spent a lot of time at the Tuileries because there was a small carnival there and he could run himself tired while I sat. (especially useful during the long fast)
I want to thank Mr. Cohen for running such a wonderful website. We found everything we needed and had a wonderful time.

Cheryl Hirsch-Ginsberg, Houston Texas.

P.S. There were a lot of Israeli tourists this time of year and we found that we could speak Hebrew on the very rare occasions that we couldn't communicate in English.

PPS. The free maps from Air France are more detailed that the free ones from Galeries Lafayette.

More information for Tourists and Kosher in France