Le Basilic, a little restaurant in Montmartre, seemed like a good place to start. It looked like it had been there forever.
I arrived just before noon, so only a few people were dining, but Le Basilic filled rapidly, and many of the patrons were obviously regulars. Good. I could tell from overheard conversations that I was the only non-French patron. Even better.
(As to why that mattered, see Christian Landers’ hilarious and deadly accurate Stuff White People Like blog, which is dormant, but still online. Item #71, “Being the Only White Person Around,” provides a general explanation.)
Fillets of herring with warm, sliced potatoes, leeks, and carrots. This starter was just the kind of thing I was looking for.
At this point, Le Basilic was lit up by the arrival of a wonderful Woman of a Certain Age and her two companions. Much air-kissing ensued. You could tell from her face and her fashionable clothing that she’d lived well.
She spilled her pre-meal champagne, and later accidentally knocked over a glass of red wine. I think I fell in love.
The meal ended with a rich homemade dark chocolate mousse with star fruit.