Bateau El Alamein
Quai François Mauriac (near Bibliothèque François Mitterrand)
Tel: 06 82 04 82 46
When I was about 10 years old, I was building a cardboard box house in the backyard. More accurately, I was trying to build one. Unfortunately, a massive wind made construction impossible. Furious with this belligerent breeze and dismayed that there was nowhere to direct my anger, I had a realization: you can’t fight with the elements. So, with a rather Zen sense of acceptance, I moved onto something else.
That’s what I was thinking about as I sat on the terrace of the welcoming Batuea El Alamein while staring up at the threatening thunder clouds. Moored up along the quai, this little purple boat boasts a delightful and inviting deck. With the exception of a few summer months, the downstairs is open for music.
With no one else ready to risk the rain, the space was empty and the woman who runs the place pointed to the sky and told me she was going to close shortly. While waiting for the rest of the group, I ordered anyway.
I followed her to the bar downstairs in the musty insides of the boat. With little choice behind the bar and no dry vermouth, I took an 8 Euros gin fizz off the menu. My cocktail, served in a tall plastic glass, wasn’t too bad. Halfway through my drink, Ritu arrived and so did the rain, putting an end to the shortest cocktail trial yet. While the cocktails aren’t impressive, I’d definitely go back here for something else on this lovely little terrace brimming with leafy plants and flowers.
Ritu and I took refuge from what quickly became a deluge in the open air bar directly across from the Bateau El Alamein. La Dame de Canton is a large and lively space with plenty of tables and an open air kitchen where you can watch the staff cooking pizzas and tossing pasta. The others arrived, and we spent a very enjoyable evening. With the rain pouring down around us, we stayed quite late thanks to good company, a few bottles of wine and several really yummy pizzas. We didn’t even mind the occasional leak coming through the roof and dribbling all over the communal-style table as we munched, sipped and had a great night despite the less than successful cocktail adventure. I’d easily come back here for more pizzas and wine another night.
So, no, you can’t fight the elements. But, sometimes if you just go with the flow, you’ll end up with something else that makes you just as happy.