Paris for Men

 
Paris for Men

Thierry Richard’s Paris for Men is a unique guidebook to the city, written by men for men. Describing the many pleasures the city offers les hommes—from finding the coolest cocktail bars to smoking a cigar beneath the starsit offers plenty of suggestions for how to make the most of a Paris stay:  where to go for a morning espresso, find the best second-hand bookstores, get your shoes shined, buy the finest wines or whiskeys, play tennis or go for a six-mile jog on a route free of cars. For dandies there are tips on where to get a great haircut, custom shirts, bespoke suits, gorgeous shoes or an irresistible French fragrance.

Since Richard is also the author of a popular restaurant blog (in French) called Chroniques du Plaisir, there are lots of food recommendations, cleverly packaged for masculine tastes: where to go for oysters, the best hamburgers, a romantic fireside dinner. A section called “Where to Eat What in Paris” covers everything from French fries and club sandwiches to whole roast turbot and parmentier of oxtail with truffles.

Written in a breezy, lighthearted style, the guide is imbued with the flirtatious spirit that reigns in Paris—where to go for the best view of women’s legs, the erotic charge the author gets from a glimpse of a colleague’s lacy blue bra strap, the fun of lunching alone surrounded by women in one of the spots favored by pretty Parisiennes: “… mixed with the pleasure of nice little dietetically correct dishes … is the thrill of sliding your eyes from table to table, like a long take in a film by Claude Lelouch”.

Each of the well written sections is a short literary text complete with evocative photographs and illustrations. And scattered throughout the book are contributions written by other well-known Parisian men—perfumer Francis Kurkdjian, writer/filmmaker Frédéric Beigbeder, chocolatier Patrick Roger, writer David Foenkinos and others—offering their own recommendations.

Paris for Men is an ideal guide for guys headed to the City of Light, whether first-timers or Paris habitués.

Paris for Men by Thierry Richard. Editions du Chêne, 2012. Paperback, 160 pages.

 

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