Ah Montmartre, dominated by the Basilica of the Sacre Couer and the artistic hub during the 20th century to Dali, Monet, Picasso & Van Gogh to name a few, has stolen my heart. I even like saying the word "Montmartre." So fancy, so French. This was one of my favorite days spent in Paris. We spent hours trying to find the perfect piece of artwork to bring home to America. I had a charcoal or a pencil drawing in mind, whether it be a portrait or a rough sketch of Paris. Unfortunately, I didn't come across one! There were so many local artists out and about in the squares painting on the streets but nothing was screaming out to me. So we went from shop to shop and I started to pick up on the fact they they were all selling the same prints and giclees on linen canvas of the same oil paintings, with the prices varying. So for me, that didn't seem to unique. I was bummed but it was still so fun running left and right and back and forth across the streets on the hunt for the perfect piece. Then I came across this watercolor signed and dated by the artists and it was an original! And not to mention it was light and airy and it was of the Sacre Couer. The way the landscape and foliage was painted around the architecture was a bit abstracted and it took my breath away. Signed, sealed and delivered it was mine! No, I didn't walk away with a graphite sketch but what I found had significance to me and captured that perfect day in Paris that I'll never forget. It is now so special to me and I appreciate the work so much.
Montmartre also held my absolute favorite Parisian cafe, La Maison Rose. Very popular and touristy of course, but do you blame me, myself and all of the Asians posing left and right in front of this delicate pink building of perfection!? Zeke and I waiting an hour outside before it opened because I knew it was both a tourist and local hot spot and I didn't want to miss out. We were the first in line and got to eat outside along the street. It was so charming. I felt like I wasn't living in reality. And they had my absolute favorite Parisian dish on their menu, croque madames. I basically ordered a croque madame every cafe we stopped at. I couldn't stop eating them. And now I have pinterest boards of all sorts of croque madame recipes that I still have yet to try out, but I intend to.
On top of the La Maison Rose, we found an incredible patisserie & candy shop called Sebastien Gaudard. First off, it was spectacular - my dream kitchen if you will. Second off, the pastries were serious works of art. They were just as delicious as they were beautiful. It almost killed me to take a bite out of them because I could tell how much work and effort it took to make them look so exquisite.
All in all, Monmartre was so perfect in every way. I loved being able to roam the cobblestone streets that some of my favorite artists lived and breathed during that time period. How amazing would it be if we could just time travel to that period? I think of the movie 'Midnight In Paris' every time. I'd give anything for that to be an actual reality.