PARIS – it conjures ideas of romance, fashion panache and artistic inspiration.
But for me and my pal it means only one thing – Disney.
So ahead of jetting to the French capital for a big kid’s holiday we decided to get together to plan the finer details of the break.
And where better than Aberdeen’s own corner of Paris, Cafe Montmartre on Justice Mill Lane.
On a week night the restaurant is quietly buzzing.
Our waiter, a young French lad who corrected us on our pronunciation and helped us pick through the packed menu, explained some of the fantastic-sounding specials.
We started with a bottle of Bordeaux Rose, a deliciously fruity and crisp Château Carignan (£17.95).
And I opted for the fois gras starter (£9.45).
Velvety discs of fois gras were served with a warmed, sweet brioche, a tangy fig chutney and a light salad – the perfect way to begin a meal.
My pal went for the crab vol au vent (£7.95). Shredded pieces of seafood were bound in a creamy sauce and encased in a light pastry. And the dish was served with a ginger sauce. She loved the pastry and the heat of the ginger but said the crab was a little lost.
For the main I went for one of the specials, the lemon sole (£18.95) – and special it was.
Two delightfully light fillets of fish were served with woody chanterelle mushrooms and soft baby spinach. The fish was doused in a heavenly saffron beurre blanc. With some crispy potatoes and veg, this truly was a fantastic main course.
My dining partner opted for the duck special (£16.95). A confit of the poultry was served with a port and orange sauce on a bed of crushed butternut squash.
My pal said the duck was melt-in-the-mouth.
We were totally stuffed after two fantastic courses – but the charming waiter twisted our arms to take pud.
My friend chose a trio of sorbets in mango and passion fruit, green apple and blackcurrant and kirsch flavours (£6.95) which was beautifully presented with sugar-dusted berries. My pal said the palate-cleansing course was like eating perfectly fresh fruit.
I went for a coffee extravaganza, l’opera (£6.95). Layers of light pastry were filled with coffee cream and topped with chocolate and crushed nuts along with a heady coffee creme caramel with a lovely sticky espresso syrup.
The meal came to a fairly expensive, but well-worth-it, £85.