Parisian bistro fare is fantastic, filling and purely French, but occasionally during a longer stay in Paris, a serious craving for something lighter, spicier and accompanied by soy sauce and saki takes over and another Croque Monsieur just will not satisfy.
But where to go for sushi or dumplings in a city that boasts Magret de Canard and Entrecôte de Boeuf on every block?
Eat yummy Asian food in Paris? Yes, you can.
The numerous Asian restaurants in Paris are sadly nothing more than precooked, fast food Chinese reheated in Microwave before being served, and the occasional black paneled and blue neon lighted sushi places that may have raised an eyebrow of uncertainty, merit your speculation.
Don’t worry however, you’re in luck- Sushi lovers, grab your chopsticks and head over to rue Ste. Anne in Paris 2nd Arrondissement, and those hankering for a brothy, spice filled soup with noodles can take heart in Paris’s version of Chinatown, along Rue Belleville, on the border between the 19th and 10th Arrondissements.
Find the best sushi restaurants on Rue Sainte-Anne
First the sushi -Located between the Palais Royale, and Avenue de l’Opera, rue Sainte-Anne is the go-to destination for sushi in Paris. It is a hidden little gem of a street, which is actually not that hidden as evidenced in the long lines on Friday and Saturday nights. Japanese restaurants in all shapes and sizes line both sides of the street for about four blocks.
If you are in a hurry you can order a roll or two and eat while standing at a long counter along with fifteen new friends; if time is not a problem and you love watching sushi chef’s do their thing there are plenty of spots with a good sized sushi bar and a few tables to cozy into; or you can decide to step it up and select one of the larger, bamboo filled spaces that tend to be pricier but more relaxed and family friendly.
Weekends can be crowded and some of the better and more popular places will have lines down the block, but if you can plan to eat earlier and go over between 7:00 and 7:30, you should beat the rush of French hipsters rebelling against their cheese and charcuterie.
Eat at a cheap Vietnamese restaurant on Rue Belleville
If the days have been gray, cold and damp, which likely they have at least once on your visit, nothing is better than a big bowl of steaming broth with noodles, and a side of dumplings, of course. Hop onto the metro, line 11, direction Mairie des Lilas and get off at Belleville.
This neighborhood in the 19th Arrondissement is a fun excursion in its own right, a little diversion between your visits to the Louvre and Picasso Museum. It is essentially what Paris calls its Chinatown, but it is nothing on the scale of San Francisco or New York. Concentrate your food selections down along the Rue Belleville, which technically leads you into the 10th Arrondissement, and you can’t go wrong.
Most of the Vietnamese spots are inexpensive and have fast service. Bright lighting and shared condiments are the norm but the food is fantastic and the menus typically include photos of the dishes so you don’t need to worry about ordering Vietnamese food in French.
Photos of sushi tray originally posted by BatMinh.