Letter from Paris: Au Petit Tonneau
By Alexander Lobrano
Having lived there for many years, I observed that the 7th arrondissement is actually a mosaic of very different little neighborhoods. The chunk of the 7th between the boulevard Saint Germain and the Seine, for example, is aristocratic in tone but more worldly and cosmopolitan than the haughtier and most decidedly penny-pinching district bound by the rue du Bac, the boulevard Saint Germain, the rue de Sevres, and the boulevard des Invalides. Then on the other side of the Esplanade des Invalides, the 7th becomes livelier and almost friendly in the snug little neighborhood in and around the rue Saint Dominique that’s favored by young BCBG singles and couples. As chef Christian Constant has discovered, this turf is actually a good restaurant neighborhood, too, because the well-born execs in the neighborhood eat out a lot and there’s also a good tourist trade from all of the small hotels in the neighborhood.