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Summer Series: Le Lobster Bar


Here’s the thing: I won’t go into a restaurant if it’s ugly. Don’t get me wrong, I like dive bars that offer potato skins, crappy coffee shops with BLTs on white bread, old-school falafel shops and anything that’s authentic… What I don’t like is hokey restaurants that try too hard. I’m not even lazy about my discrimination; I do the research. If we are going to a new restaurant, I check it out 100%. Thanks to the Internet, I can spy on a restaurant and it’s decor from afar and decide if I’m going to make the effort to go there. Yes, yes, yes the food has to be good as well. I’m looking for the whole package.

(If you asked me what my favorite restaurant in the entire world is, my answer would be Mrs. Wilkie’s in Savannah, Georgia. More on that in a different blog.)
So, I want to share with you a restaurant that fits perfectly into my Summer Series and happens to follow all of my criteria: aesthetically pleasing, charming, not quite the norm, with a menu that is worth leaving the comforts of my own home.
Le Lobster Bar in Paris!
I have been walking past this little restaurant for months, usually on Sundays, when it is closed. I have actually stopped in my tracks and thought, “Whomever designed this restaurant knows what they’re doing.” (I happen to be an expert at restaurant design because I won “Best Restaurant Design” at my interior design school. I also won for “Best Hair” the same day in the same class so that gives you an idea of my expertise and the level of professionalism at the school. I’m not sure which award I’m more proud of.) Anyway, as I peered into the windows of the restaurant I knew I would like it.
I think the best way to describe the decor is that it is, as my mother would say, very pulled together. It has a definite “concept” even though I hate that word. Everything was very well thought out, had its place, and made a little statement without being overly obvious or cheesy. Honestly though, they had me at the logo. Let’s take a look…

Have you ever seen a better logo for a lobster shop? The color are perfect, the font works and the overall design incorporates the theme of the restaurant subtly. Remember my motto: Keep it simple, stupid.
The second thing I noticed after the logo as I peered through the windows were the chairs. Those chairs! They make the whole restaurant. Look…

The dolphin tripod chairs are circa 1910 from the 1st class dining room of the SS Mary cruise ship.


The chairs could not have been cheap and the owner made a wise decision to invest in those suckers. However, a restaurant cannot survive on cool chairs alone. Luckily, Le Lobster Bar just keeps getting better. Lookie…

 The banquette seating is circa 1950 from the SS Kenya Castle steam ship that sailed between Africa and Australia.
 The map etched in the mirror represents the concept of the restaurant... A visual link between the two countries, France and America and their respective coasts... Brittany and Maine.

Considering this is actually a restaurant, we have to consider the menu, non? My second greatest trait is that I know how to read a menu and I can tell if the restaurant is going to be good. Aren’t I full of self complements today? What I like about Le Lobster Bar is that the menu is succinct. They know their specialties and they stick to it. No funny business. This is a lobster bar that serves lobster. I hate when French restaurants try to do American restaurants and add their own French touch. Case in point: there is a new hot dog restaurant in our neighborhood trying to be très American but they made a suicidal mistake… They offer avocados as a hot dog topping. Who the fuck uses an avocado as a hot dog topping? Oh, I know… The French. Le Lobster Bar has enough sense to stick to its guns and offer what it should offer… Classic seafood fare found in any port of coastal Maine or Brittany, France. Clam chowder, lobster rolls, whole grilled lobster, tuna burger and a crab roll. That’s it! Besides a few tapas, and two desserts including key lime pie, that is their entire menu… The way God intended.
I decided to order off of their menu… For research. I don’t make it a habit of having lobster on a Tuesday evening but I thought I would take one for the team and indulge. And boy am I glad I did! I ordered the lobster roll with French fries and that key lime pie. I ordered it TO GO because I had to get home to watch the latest episode of The Real Housewives of Orange County. The girls are in Tahiti this week and I needed to see Tamra make a white trash fool out of herself… I wasn’t disappointed. I wasn’t disappointed in the lobster roll either.

Taramas-rose, crabe, oursin which is basically seafood spread of shrimp, crab and sea urchin with blinis. 


According to the owner and chef of Le Lobster Bar, Mathieu Mercier (a former filmmaker from Switzerland), the lobsters are sourced from Brittany, France which explains their richer fruity taste. The roll is a soft brioche and the sauce, oh the sauce (homemade tarragon mayonnaise). The fries are made from scratch using a variety of potatoes and extra virgin olive oil. The key lime pie made me want to move to the Florida Keys and read Hemingway novels. Delicious.

Monsieur Mercier spent part of his youth in Maine enjoying the real deal of lobster rolls, combined his hands-on design aesthetic and voilà…Le Lobster Bar was born. Let’s take a look at some of the details…

This little gem of a restaurant is a definite go to restaurant… Your eyes and taste buds will thank you.
Le Lobster Bar
41 Rue Coquillière
Paris, France 75001

All photos taken by my multi-tasker caregiver, Victor.

Additionally, I would like to take a moment to thank all of you for making my little French finds sale a huge success. I’m so glad you liked everything. Merci beaucoup! I am getting everything ready to ship to you. The next sale will be in September. You can follow me on Instagram HERE for sale updates and sneak peeks!
*Something you don’t know about me? Well, actually, today it’s about Gracie. Since today’s blog is all about lobster, I thought I would tell you a little story about Gracie and seafood. As you know, Gracie is visiting my friend and her children at their summer house on the island of Mallorca, Spain. Gracie called me yesterday and dropped a bomb on me. A hysterical bomb. In the middle of our discussion about her adventures in Spain she says to me, “Oh, mommy, I’ve been eating a lot of fish since I’ve arrived.” Now, normally, this would be a normal sentence. However, not from my teenage daughter. For Gracie’s entire life, 20 years on Monday, August 10, she has refused to eat any sort of seafood. Not a shrimp, crab, salmon, not a tuna, nor lobster… Not even breaded fish sticks dipped in ketchup at elementary school! She won’t even try it. So when little Gracie told me that she had been “eating a lot of fish since her arrival to Mallorca” my first response was, “Oh, really, Gracie. You’ve been eating fish lately?” She said, “Yes. I love fish.” I rolled my eyes and asked her what kind of fish was she eating? Her response? “Octopus.” WTF! How do you go from 0 to 60 on the fish scale just like that? If she were going to eat fish I thought she would start with something neutral like a crab sushi roll but no, Gracie went full throttle and ate octopus! She then continued, “Last night for dinner we had a delicious white fish over a carrot purée and the previous night we had paella with mussels.”
This is the beauty of encouraging your children to travel, experience other customs, and let them be influenced by the cuisines of other cultures. Not that fish is another culture but for my daughter it is! She never would have had octopus if she were with me. She would’ve said, “Mommy, could you please tell the chef that I don’t eat fish.” And I would have! But here she was, without me, at a table where everyone else was getting octopus and she had no choice… And guess what, she loved it! Now if we could only get her to eat cheese. Considering she goes full throttle… Maybe I should suggest a nice ripe épouisse cheese to start?

Today is definitely a rose and thorn day. Gracie continued to tell me about her exciting adventures including a midnight boat ride after a late dinner that she said had the most beautiful views she’d ever seen… The moon over the navy blue waters along the rocky coastline of Mallorca. Then, I received an email from a friend who told me that her friend passed away yesterday. She had ALS. She also had a teenage daughter. I could literally feel my heart breaking. A flood of questions came to my head. Why did she have to die? Why did she have to get ALS? Why do I have ALS? Why did her daughter have to lose her mother? Why am I so lucky? Why do I still get to be here to see my daughter? When is my time? Does somebody named God up there have more for me to do? Am I supposed to solve some riddle of life before I go? Do I need to finish the season finale of The Real Housewives of New York? Do I need to get Gracie through another year of college? Do I need to have one more Thanksgiving? Do I need to teach Gracie how to make sole meunière now that she loves fish? Do I need to take a few more walks around Paris with David? What is keeping me here? Why am I not gone yet? Why did my friend’s friend with ALS have to leave yesterday? Why didn’t she get another day?
Why do any of us get another day? While I think about this, I’m going to spend the weekend hugging my cute husband, talking to my daughter on the phone reminding her to wear a life vest, eating bread chock full of gluten, take a walk along the Seine, laugh with my girlfriends, call some people and tell them I’m sorry for whatever reason, buy some flowers and appreciate every moment that I have left. May I suggest you do the same?


  1. I just spent a week back East on Martha's Vineyard, where in one 24-hour period I had a boiled lobster, two lobster rolls and lobster bisque. And it still wasn't enough 'lobstah!' I think I have to put the Lobster Barn in Paris on my future travel itineraries. (And I want those dolphin chairs.) I love all your "something you don't know about me" writing -- and this one was particularly poignant. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Dear Ellie - Thank you for another great restaurant tip the next time I am fortunate enough to be in Paris! And thank you even more for finding the lovely painting that I purchased during your sale this week! But mostly, thank you for continuing to share your life with us - the good and the me, you are still here for many, many reasons! Have a beautiful weekend - can't wait to hear about it next week. xo from sunny Princeton, NJ - Jennifer

  3. yes, i will do that just as soon as i finish this comment but first i start with you. you are a blessing to us all. thank you for the reminder. x

  4. Thank you for the reminder to live and enjoy each day!

  5. I agree that this restaurant is very pulled together. Love those brass tables! What is all the etching on them?

    Now I'll tell you something interesting about Key Lime pie. I grew up in Miami because my maternal grandparents moved there from Virginia. My mother wrote her memories down for us recently, and that's when I learned about Key Lime pie. When she was 11 years old in 1947, she used to go to the Keys with another family to an old frame house for dinner. This restaurant was famous for their Key Lime pie. They were not made with condensed milk like we are used to. They were exactly like a Lemon Meringue pie, except made with Key Limes.

    The restaurant would bring the pies out of the kitchen, and with all the meringue on top, they were eight inches high! Years later, she was shocked the first time she saw a pie made with condensed milk and no meringue. Even worse, it was green! I'm not sure why they changed, but I love the modern version anyway (as long as they aren't green).

  6. Hi Ellie, thank you for making me smile and then making me cry and be grateful, I do not know how you always accomplish this just by being your wonderful self.
    The chairs in the restaurant are absolutely fabulous and I will visit it when I return to Paris, maybe we can visit it together along with your cute caregiver :)
    In Miami trendy restaurants pop up every week, I never visit any of them unless like you I do extensive research and make sure that the food and as important the service is good. South beach is known for expensive restaurants with snooty waiters and mediocre food.
    Why are any of us still here? I believe that we are here as long as we need to be to fulfill our purpose on this earth, what that purpose is I do not know if we ever find out. I know that you give many people courage, determination and a such an appreciation for every moment that we have on this earth. I, along with so many others read your blog and laugh then cry and then always feel grateful for my life and for having met you. Meeting you in Paris was the highlight of my trip, your grace, spirit and beauty just filled the room and I could feel the light that just flowed from you.
    My dear friend you are an amazing woman and every day that you are part of this world is a blessing that is bestowed upon David, Gracia and your family but upon all of us that are fortunate to know you and share in your beauty, I do not know why your friends friend died leaving a daughter behind, it is very sad, perhaps she reached the end of her life's path, I don't think we will ever know but I am grateful that you are with us and that you share so much of what makes you Ellie with all of us.

    1. Lourdes, I couldn't say it better so I won't even try. But thank you for expressing what I think a lot of us (aka anyone who is here) feel, so beautifully. And we need to talk about that light shining out of Ellie's baby blues. As I think I have said before, they could provide the power for half of Europe - her laugh would do it for the other half.

      I am a big believer in the Ellie Revolution...

      And ps. I am a big believer in the power of a good lobster roll. Thank you, Victor! Almost (ok not really but still) as good as being there...DEFINITELY getting takeout for two from there on my next visit to Paris. Even if you probably would prefer Chipolte, Ellie. :)

      Sending you so, so, so much Love, Strength and Gratitude,

    2. I agree with Heather, I don't think I could express my feelings more beautiful than Lourdes did.

      Thank you for sharing your wisdom Ellie, and for always keeping it real! I had to laugh at your comment about Tamra on The Real Housewives of Orange County, I had good laugh at her myself. I adore Heather and Shannon and I love how Shannon is always predicting herself as she loves anything "natural", but yet she have had botox. Just like me, I love anything organic, but I also love a good fast food meal once in a while.

      I have to agree with Gracie as regards to cheese. I have tried it several times, but I don't care for it and prefer not to eat it. Many find it strange, but I don't care for it, so I rather avoid it.

      As always a good laugh and something to bright up any day, I always look forward to reading your posts.
      Have a lovely day!

  7. Ellie,
    I found your blog about a few weeks ago and quickly consumed all your posts. I look forward to reading your new posts in the afternoon on my train ride home from my office in Philly. I love this post-you can never get enough lobster. By the way, the little rubberbands for the claws work perfectly for getting bottles of tonic water open. Thank you for sharing your stories. You are a kindred spirit and you brighten my days!

  8. Dear Ellie, Thank you for all that you do and your immense contribution to the world. I absolutely love your blog and am a HUGE fan. To state the obvious you have great style :) and better yet you're funny as all get out. Loved this post on Le Lobster Bar it looks amazing! You should check out this Key Lime pound cake if you haven't already.
    It's out of this world. I wish I could ship you one!

    My uncle had ALS and passed away in May of 2010. Your drive and spirit are an inspiration. It may sound strange but you're in my prayers. Thank you for sharing your light with us all :) xoxo Deborah

  9. Once again, thank you for your beautiful blog. You are very generous to share your life (and your fabulous taste). Thank you as well for your reminder to say sorry. It's so very hard but if you can do it surely so can I. What a great teacher you are! Gracie is lucky to have you. I would love to be in Paris now. So jealous of Lourdes for her friendship with you! Also, this is your Miami fan club because I also live in Miami. We just had lobster salad today! But it's spiny Florida lobster hand caught by my cute husband. We are lucky that way with our cute (and very caring) husbands. Cannot wait to get my goodies from your shop! Hugs, Elena

  10. Ellie, none of us knows what day will be our last and why. Your prescription for gratitude for each day we are given is beautiful. Oh, how I wish I had figured all this out when I was Gracie's age.....or even yours! Your message has influenced many people you will never know. You have a purpose and it is good!!

    1. Thank you Nan for expressing what many of us want to say. Ellie, you are an inspiration.

  11. Enjoyed this latest post, as always! I plan to enjoy my weekend doing exactly as you suggest. And perhaps next week as I visit my brother in Savannah, I'll talk him into joining the folks on Jones Street waiting to get into Mrs. Wilkes' boarding house!

  12. Dear sweet Ellie. I don't know why you are still here, but I am so glad you are! You instruct us, enlighten us, and share your sadness and joy. Big, big hugs.

  13. In my soul I suspect your friend's friend died because she knew she was through with what she had to do. You, dear Ellie, are not finished yet. I have often wondered about what you're thinking about your time left on earth, and this was truly lovely to read because it reflects both your wonder in life and your strength in living it under some of the most trying circumstances anyone can experience. Whenever I complain about discomfort or anything trivial I think of you and catch myself. Because you have reminded me that strength can be summoned even through fear or sadness. Even when you don't feel strong, you show up here and teach us some things we might never have learned otherwise. You named Gracie right....she is a reflection of the grace you exhibit daily.
    Lobster ...yum. Being from Boston, and with lots of trips to Maine and the Cape through the years, my belief is that there is not much better in the world than fresh lobster. Thanks for the tip, and please take care.

  14. Dearest Ellie: Your blog is the ONLY one that I absolutely look forward to every day. When it is quiet, I panic! God is going to keep you around for a long time yet because you my dear are therapy for us. You teach us about the beauty of life all around. You keep me grounded and show me what truly is important in life. In your " something about me" you need to explain to all of us how with ALS you are able to WRITE your blog. Stay well sweet Ellie!

  15. Dear Ellie:
    I have been following your blog for awhile now, and I must tell you how glad I am to have found you. Your are an amazing woman with such spirit. It is so easy to get caught up with life's stresses, and demands, but you remind me to stop and be grateful for every day, and the treasures and beauties that surround us. You remind me how blessed I am. I thank you….

  16. Dear Ellie, thank you so much for your kind comments recently with our family loss.
    Yes, you are still here for a reason, just today you gave me the experience of being in Paris eating lobster even though I cannot be there. You reinforced to us how it is never too late to try or do anything.(Gracie) Oh and I even came to your sale, yet nearly everything was already snatched up!
    Merci, Merci!

    The Arts by Karena

  17. Ellie - you are one A-mazing woman! What would I do without your blog to remind me of what's really important! Speaking of which . . . no self-respecting (Maine) lobster roll should be served without a whoopie pie for dessert!

  18. I never need a reason to go back to Paris - but now I'm on a mission to go back JUST so I can eat lobster at this incredible restaurant - thank you, thank you! Love all your mother/daughter posts. Gracie sounds wonderful and because she has had you for her mom, she will always have you. I like to think our children will always have us in their hearts & souls even when we are gone. That and that I can come back and haunt their little asses if need be.

  19. You are precious, Ellie. Here's to another day! xoxo from Janet in your Macon, Georgia fan club

  20. Ellie, I am compelled to let you know how much I appreciate your writing, in which you share your life with us, your friends new and old. I rarely comment on social media but you are exceptional in every way...your style, your honesty, your photos. your "joie de vivre". Because of you, I plan to spend my day as you suggest. Thank you.

  21. Darling Girl, You are here, in part, not just for Gracie, David, Victor, et al, and lobster roll, but for the rest of us. Those whose lives you have enriched. Whose style you have improved . . . . . And because you are so absolutely wonderful, you will never, ever, ever go away. EA

  22. I can only echo everyone above. I recently found your blog and admire you endlessly. I am about to turn 65, feel at loose ends even with a job, a wonderful family and we are all truly blessed. Thank you for this post. I need to snap out of it!!! Thank you and bless you.
    Next time in Paris.......Le Lobster Bar!

  23. Dear Ellie, I love your blog, as I've told you many times. Wow -- it went from lobster and design expertise, which was fascinating to read -- and how adorable is that Swiss owner -- to your reflections on the purpose of life. I'm so happy one of your posse took photos inside the restaurant. They're more vivid that way. You know, I read your post yesterday, and today I lit a candle with you in mind at Santuario Nostra Signora di Montallegro as part of my morning treck up to the sanctuary. Nearly every post of yours makes me appreciate my simple and ordinary life. Thank you once again. Sincerely, Michelle

  24. Thank you for being so real! I love that you pull no punches with your language and your thoughts on your relationships with your husband, daughter, and friends! Fabulous no matter what reality your illness is putting you through. Your strength is enviable and I applaud you for pulling it off under the circumstances. I hope to learn your grace someday.

  25. Happy Birthday to your beautiful Gracie! Be strong Ellie dear, you changed my life after I read your blog. Six months ago my partner in life, the love of my life committed suicide like your sweet brother -he hanged himself in the backyard- because of the awful economic crisis in Greece. He was a well known actor, theatre director and prized writer, we had a little theatre together for ten years -we closed it because of the crisis- and he couldnt take it anymore. I was devastated, he was my whole life, we were together 24 hours the day for 17 years, I couldnt cope with life and then I read your blog. You opened my eyes, you gave me strength again. Thank you Ellie. Stay alive for your daughter, for your husband, be strong. They need you. And you have a mission in your life. You give strength to all of us. Thank you. Maria from Athens-Greece

    1. Dear Maria, you just made this blog worthy. XOXO Ellie

    2. Maria I am so sorry for your loss, I am at awe at your strength and the strength of so many in this group, of course, only mirroring Ellie's, I feel truly blessed to be a part of it such a strong and courageous group of people,
      Sending you a big hug

  26. I enjoy your personal and family stories, travel details, recipes, decorating advice, sense of humor and crisp writing style. Love every word. Look forward to your posts. Your honesty and courage inspire me. Take good care. xxoo

  27. Octopus!? That is a surprise. I thought for sure Gracie was going to say Swedish Fish (the candy!)  What a great place to start eating fish, on the Costa del Sol...I guess the Mediterranean Sea was calling her name. I wonder if she’ll like Le Lobster Bar. I never had a Brittany lobster but if they truly have a “richer, fruity taste”, I’d be all in. Oh, and before the day ends…Happy 20th Birthday Gracie – Vaya con Dios!

    *Something you don’t know about me? I’ve had a running dialogue with God since the day my child was born…something like…”Please just keep me alive until he’s 20 and on his own”. Turns out, his many challenges still require our help, so the dialogue continues. I often think about the Whys and often conclude with, Grace is perfect even when my life isn’t. Ellie, I don’t know which one of us will go first, so I’ll take this moment now, to say Thank You for sharing your creative spirit, your humor, love, wisdom, the good, the bad and all ugly white trash wonderment ;). Besides that? We both need to stick around for the finale of Real Housewives of New York AND the Reunion…Andy Cohen said that Ramona drops a bomb.

  28. You rock "lobster" !!! You make me laugh, smile, and cry. You are warm, drole, clever, funny. I wish you
    my neighbor and friend. And I wish you many more days and years. Merci.

  29. I love you. That's all. Big hugs, my internet acquaintance.