It was a very special night for us tonight.
We were almost giddy as we headed off to Safety Harbor to our favorite local restaurant – Parts of Paris Bistro. We first found “PoP” in December 2015 when a local friend and Safety Harbor resident told us she had had one of the best steaks ever.
We fell in love with it the first time we visited. We’ve been for a Sunday brunch, or to pop in for a couple extra large hand-crafted martinis, and often for an amazing meal of steak, boullebaise, grouper or mussels.
When you find PoP, it feels as if you’ve discovered it yourself. However, they are known by many and they have been awarded the OpenTable Diner’s Choice award from 2012-2017 for five consecutive years and have been featured in many publications and dining guides.
So tonight we were especially excited that we had gathered 10 loyalty cards since we first started dining with them, and were now to be awarded a free meal.
We have watched the bartenders make hand-crafted martinis at the bar, as they’ve explained it courteously in detail, but we just can’t replicate it. No matter where we go, what special liquors, fruits or garnishes we buy, we cannot duplicate their martinis.
We were ready to order the steaks, which we always enjoy, and the owner came over to tell us to make sure we order two appetizers as well, as these were also included in our free meals.
My husband often gets the French onion soup and we usually get the chevre chaud salad that includes beets and walnuts, but the owner suggested charcuterie. We had had it several times before and loved it, so we decided to order it again. It has different items each time, and this night featured several types of country style pate, fois gras torchon, duck liver mousse, cured salmon and house pickles, as well as mustards. ($18).
I ordered the steak steak char-grilled filet with bearnaise sauce ($36). The steak just melted in my mouth. There is a choice of two sides which are always delicious: The green beans are heavenly but tonight they weren’t available. I was very pleased with my choices of Lyonnaise pototoes and bacon and carrots
My husband ordered steak fritas, sliced New York strip steak with summer squash, bearnaise sauce and pommes fritas. ($29)
By now we were pretty full from the charcuterie but it was too delicious to stop.
We also had our choice of desserts which included:
- plateau de dessert
- les fromages
- crepe Suzette
- mousse au chocolat
- creme brulee
- baies et creme glacee (ice cream with berries)
- truffe au chocolat
- crepe nutella
Usually if we order dessert, we get the creme brulee and split it. Since I had made homemade strawberry ice cream this summer, I wanted to try their homemade glace, or ice cream, to see how mine compared. So we took them up on their offer and devilishly ordered two.
Surprise. We loved it.
We love the ambiance of this old refurbished 1936 bungalow, which somehow reminds you of a ship or a boat house. The artwork, maps of Paris and several Eiffel Towers are dotted throughout the cozy venue. I’ve tried to count the Eiffel Towers but there are so many, and some of them are hidden or small, so it’s difficult to find them all.
One of my favorite things about Parts of Paris is the music, which always seems to soak through to the soul. Whether it’s jazz, Bosa Nova, French or Frank Sinatra, it always makes you feel like you Just Want To Stay.
For such a small venue, there are many secret niches. Along with the dining room and bar, there is a front patio with heaters in the winter and fans in the summer, as well as a patio furniture area for groups to hang out and chill. The dining room can get rather raucous sometimes, but I think they like it that way – like a big happy family with everyone enjoying their food and company.
From the very first time we visited – from a quiet low-key appetizer, to a birthday celebration – we have always enjoyed the impeccable service from each of the staff members. We love Jeff the bartender (who doesn’t!?) and Chris and Sonny are our favorite waiters. You will be delighted with any of the warm and welcoming staff.
Remember to make reservations as they can get very busy.