Showing posts with label dostoevsky. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dostoevsky. Show all posts

28 November 2012

unpolished: miroir, 75018

The fashion company I work for used to have a shop not far from métro Abbesses in Montmartre. I think the original commercial rationale was: it's a picturesque neighborhood, with a lot roving tourists - surely they'll purchase accessories ?

The shop didn't work for several reasons. To put it simply, the neighborhood wasn't 'there,' yet; nor, with the constant influx of panting tourists looking for the Amelie café, was it clear it would ever get 'there.' All the knick-knackery shuts out higher-end retail. Tourists hiking towards Sacre Coeur, if they did stop to shop, did so in places that looked scruffier or more classically Montmartrois than our brand. (Paris tourists generally seek either the mythical cosmopolitan Paris or the mythical village Paris. The city's actual charm is that it contains both myths, often simultaneously, on the same street - but tourists in Montmartre are hunting for the latter one.)

I am getting around to discussing a neighborhood restaurant - Miroir, also located quite near Abbesses. I visited during Fashion Week in October on the recommendation of my favorite lunch purveyor and wine aficionado Balthazar de la Borde. On the one hand, I agree with Balt that Miroir is a godsend, given its location: an unfussy place to get a tasty and well-sourced, mostly-traditional meal, replete with a good, mostly-natural wine list. (The proprietors of Miroir also run the Cave de Miroir across the street.) On the other hand, I suspect that Miroir, like the neighborhood, is not 'there' yet, and on the night we dined there, one major service bungle made me despair of it ever getting 'there.'