Paris Profiles – 7th Arrondissement with Ann Mah
I have been a big fan and longtime reader of Ann Mah's book. Every Francophile has a copy of her Mastering the Art of French Eating book. This summer she published The Lost Vintage, a beautiful story that takes place in the heart of France’s wine country. Ann's been busy because she also just released Instantly French which demonstrates she is one smart cookie taking advantage of the Instant Pot craze!
Ann splits her time between Washington, D.C., and Paris, is a well-established journalist, author and foodie so I am thrilled to have her share her favorite spots where she lives.
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Let's Discover Ann's 7th Arrondissement.
 Favorite thing about your neighborhood.
When I first moved to Paris, my opinion of the 7th was colored by stereotypes and I too hastily dismissed it as stodgy and boring. But when I started working at the American Library in Paris – which is in the 7th, a few blocks from the Eiffel tower – I discovered streets full of old-fashioned, familial charm. We have 50-year-old cafés serving vin de pays and perfect omelettes aux fines herbes instead of Brooklyn-style cocktail lounges or neo-bistros with odd-shaped plates – and honestly, that's kind of a relief. I love the intersection of food, history, and culture that's so much a part of France, and I'll always be a sucker for classic Paris.
 Least favorite thing about your neighborhood.
I wish Anne Hidalgo would clean up the Champ de Mars. The park surrounding the Eiffel tower should be a jewel of the city – instead, the lawn is brown and there's a rat infestation. It's embarrassing.
 Favorite coffee spot in your neighborhood.
Le Cairn is a tiny little health-food/ coffee shop with great coffee drinks and vegan and gluten-free food options. The owners are super friendly – they're always putting hearts or smiley faces in the foam of my grand crème – and while I'm neither vegan nor gluten-free, I appreciate their lighter food options like the chia fruit bowl.
 Favorite spot for drinks.
On warm summer evenings, I love the terrasse at Rosa Bonheur sur Seine. There are long picnic tables, glasses of iced rosé, and a general air of boozy conviviality. On weekends they make pizza in a wood-burning oven all day long, so my friends and I meet here in the early evening and feed the kids an early dinner while the grownups enjoy an apéro.
 Favorite local hangout.
The American Library in Paris is an amazing center for community and culture and it's one of my favorite places to write and do research. (Full disclosure: I used to work here, so of course I love it.) But they really do have some amazing author events, story-times for kids, and a wide-ranging collection – all in a beautiful new space.
 Favorite breakfast spot.
Zia Paris is a tiny, bright café with great, inventive food, and – unusually in Paris – they serve brunch all week! The chef-owner is from New Mexico and so the food has a southwestern note – I really enjoy the hot sauce he makes from imported hatch chiles. My daughter loves the sweet dutch baby, which is like a fluffy pancake, served with syrup and fruit – and they also have a savory version with goat cheese and bacon that I'm dying to try.
 Favorite lunch spot.
Les Deux Abeilles is a charming salon de thé, owned by a mother-daughter team. The decor is charming – flowered wallpaper,
lace curtains, heavy wooden furniture, and fresh flowers – and the food simple and homey; they make everything themselves. They have excellent savory tarts, perfect omelettes, and the desserts are heavenly. I dream about the chocolate cake.
 Favorite dinner spot.
Akihiro Horikoshi spent over 20 years as the fish chef at the Michelin three-star L'Ambroisie, and he brings this talent and skill to the food at his jewel-box of a restaurant, La Table d'Akihiro. The sophisticated prix fixe menu centers on seafood, and everything – from the just-barely poached langoustine tails to the firm-fleshed filets of St-Pierre – is exquisite perfection.
 One thing you always do/spot you always take friends from out of town to do/see.
I'm lucky enough to have a view of the Eiffel tower from my living room windows, and I love sharing it with friends. That first sparkle of the evening – when the tower bursts into lights – is always a magical moment; if the wind is blowing in the right direction, I can often hear people start to cheer. I've seen it a thousand times, and it still takes my breath away.
Here are other great spots in the 7th arrondissement that I have curated for you:
> Arnaud Nicolas (46 Avenue de la Bourdonnais) charcuterie, terrines, pâtés, and cured meats, oh my!
> Bistrot Belhara (23 Rue Duvivier) neighborhood restaurant with a Basque menu.
> Bistro Saint Dominique (131 Rue Saint-Dominique) classic French dishes.
> Café Central (40 Rue Cler) great lunch spot, vegan burger!
> Cafe Constant (139 Rue Saint-Dominique) fantastic resto run by the well-loved Christian Constant.
> La Fontaine de Mars (129 Rue Saint-Dominique) classic bistro, get the Aubrac steak with sauce au poivre.
> Le Violon d’Ingres (135 Rue Saint-Dominique) Parisian institution of haute cuisine.
> Les Cocottes (135 Rue Saint-Dominique) Christian Constant restaurant serving dishes in cast-iron casserole pots.
> Malabar (88 Rue Saint-Dominique) good spot for brunch.
> Marlon (159 Rue de Grenelle) tacos! Get the rock shrimp tempura taco!
> Martine Lambert (39 Rue Cler) famous Normand ice cream maker who opened up a shop in Paris!
> Noglu (69 rue de Grenelle) chic spot for quiches and avocado toast.
> Pertinance (29 Rue de l'Exposition) fantastic spot with 2018 Michelin one star from Japanese chefs.
7eme Coffee Shops
> Coutume Café (47 Rue de Babylone) trendy cafe with great coffee.
> Cuillier (68, rue de Grenelle) serves Belleville Brûlerie coffee (yummy!).
> Judy (18 rue de Fleurus) serves Costume coffee, which is exceptional.
> Marcello (8 Rue Mabillon) Italian forward, great terrace.
> Saint Pearl (38 rue des Saints-Pères) tiny but cozy.
> %ARABICA (53-57 Rue de Grenelle) go for the latte art, stay for the pastries.
> Au Sauvignon (80 Rue des Saints-Pères) wine bar.
> Bar du Central (99 Rue Saint-Dominique) great local bar and has a good burger too!
> Fitzgerald (54 Boulevard de la Tour-Maubourg) hidden bar behind a restaurant.
> O'Brien's (77 Rue Saint-Dominique) great French beers on draft.
> Rosa Bonheur sur Seine (Port des Invalides, Quai d’Orsay) great terrace with a great view of Pont Alexandre III bridge.
> The Club (24 Rue Surcouf) creative cocktails.
7eme Parks, Museums & Things to Do
> American Library (10 Rue du Général Camou) Mentioned above by Ann.
> Assemblée Nationale (126 Rue de l'Université) lower house of the French parliament, gorgeous building.
> Eiffel Tower (5 Avenue Anatole France) a must at least once!
> Esplanade Jacques Chaban-Delmas (Ave de Breteuil) green space.
> Gusto (218 Rue de Grenelle) great little pizza shop.
> Hôtel des Invalides (Rond-Point du Bleuet de France) Napoleon's final resting place.
> Hôtel Matignon (57 Rue de Varenne) official residence of the Prime Minister of France.
> Musée des Egouts de Paris (93 Quai d'Orsay) sewer museum!
> Musée d’Orsay (1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur) my absolute favorite museum, former Beaux-Arts railway station.
> Musée du Quai Branly (37 Quai Branly) museum indigenous art and cultures of Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas.
> Musée Rodin (77 Rue de Varenne) museum with Auguste Rodin’s most famous sculptures.
> Square Samuel Rousseau (2 Rue Casimir Périer) Small square facing the church of St. Clotilde.
> Deyrolle (46 Rue de Bac) fun gardening shop, featured in Midnight in Paris.
> Le Bon Marché (24 Rue de Sèvres) the oldest department store in Paris.
> Rue Saint-Dominique is full of upmarket shops.
> Rue Cler open-air market street
> Saxe-Breteuil Market (Place de Breteuil and Avenue de Saxe) beautiful food market.
> Hôtel Duc de St.-Simon (14 Rue de St.-Simon) 34 room small hotel that feels like you are staying in a home.
> Hôtel Juliana (10-12 Rue Cognacq Jay) art deco chic hotel.
> Hôtel Le Bellechasse (8 Rue de Bellechasse) Christian Lacroix designed hotel practically next to the Musée d’Orsay.
> Hotel Le Cinq Codet (5 Rue Louis Codet) urban, modern boutique hotel, very close to the Rodin Museum.
> Hotel Le Narcisse Blanc & Spa (19 Boulevard de la Tour-Maubourg) small, luxury boutique hotel.
> Hôtel Le Tourville (16 Ave. de Tourville) 1930s Neo-classical hotel.
> Hôtel Montalembert (3 Rue de Montalembert) near the Musée du Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay.
> Hôtel Pont Royal (7 Rue de Montelambert) next to Les Tuileries garden.
> Hôtel Saint Dominique (62 Rue Saint-Dominique) sophisticated with a cool courtyard.
> Hôtel Verneuil (8 Rue de Verneuil) 17th-century building.
> J.K. Place (82 rue de Lille) luxurious 30 room hotel from Italian hotel chain.
You can connect with Ann Mah on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest, and of course on her blog.
How about you? Do you have any 7th arrondissement additions? Have you been to this area of Paris? Did you find this post helpful for a future trip?
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This was an awesome interview. Really makes me want to go to Paris, like, now!
We stayed at the Hotel Villa Saxe in the 7th Arrondissement when we were in Paris and loved it. One of my favourite museums in that area is the Rodin Museum!
This is a great interview. Paris is definitely on my bucket list to visit. I will have to add this to my go to as well.
What a great location. I have heard so many great things about those who visit Paris. Thankful you shared more information makes me want to go there evne more.
Thanks for sharing this post. I would not have a hard time looking for places to visit and to dine in. This looks like a neat place to live!
I’ve only been to Paris once as a child, and only to the tower. Would love to go back someday and really see what Paris is all about.
This is so cool! I love the insider info to Paris. I can’t believe there is actually a rat infestation though.
First let me say that I enjoy and respect your reviews and comments, but I feel I must remonstrate with you about a recommendation of yours (not posted here). I recently viewed a YouTube interview with you at Le Mistral. Looked good and you recommended it. What ensued was a travesty. Moutarde in little plastic packets for steak tartare? Rabbit cooked to a fare-thee-well. House wine pretty close to undrinkable. Aligot that had a distinct taste of mold. Soggy fries. Bad to indifferent service. Same price as Bistrot Paul Bert where we had a wonderful meal. I know the owner is a friend, but you should have counseled the owner to up their game. For a much, much better meal at a good price in the 19th, try Chantefable.
Such a fabulous guide for this charming area. Especially love your favorite breakfast, lunch and dinner spots as well as your curated list.