When I arrived in Paris on Tuesday, my friends from the U.S. and a friend of ours who lives in Paris met me at the Gare d'Austerlitz. We walked over the bridge to the Gare de Lyon, on the other side of the Seine, where I was planning to meet CHM a couple of hours later. He was coming back to Paris by train after a trip down south to visit family.
Anyway, I had decided to have lunch with my friends at a big brasserie across the street from the Gare de Lyon. It's called L'Européen and its specialty is seafood — fruits de mer. A brasserie is a big café/restaurant that serves a wide range of standard French dishes.
Claude, the woman who lives in Paris, and I decided to have oysters as our first course at lunch. They were served raw on the half-shell, with lemon and a shallot vinegar sauce that we could use to season them. The oysters were slightly sweet — I mean naturally sweet — and also very cold and salty. Delicious, in other words.
I'm sorry for the blurry picture above, but blur happens.... As my main course, I had what is called confit de canard. That's a duck leg and thigh section that is slow cooked in duck fat and then browned in a hot oven. It's usually served with sauteed potatoes, as this one was — they're underneath.
My friend Lewis ordered noix de coquilles St-Jacques — scallops — with green vegetables as his main course. I almost regretted that I hadn't ordered that, but the duck was very good. We finished the meal with a nice cup of espresso coffee.