From a young age, I have loved Disney. Little Mermaid was the first film I ever saw and at the ripe age of 26, I can still sing every song plus many more Disney songs. ‘Colours of the Wind’ – Tick. ‘Be Our Guest’ – Tick. ‘A Whole New World’ – Tick. Not sung well but with all the magic of Disney and jazz hands. Growing up as a family we were very fortunate to travel to Florida multiple times and just cemented the love not just for me but for my whole family.
My brother turned 30 just before Christmas, he’s fiancée amazingly arranged a surprise trip for him and a group of his friends to spend the weekend before Christmas in Disneyland, Paris. Twelve rowdy friends (some may or may not have been dressed as a six-foot-something male Pocahontas) boarded the Eurostar and in a blink of an eye, we were in Paris.
We had tickets to go to the top of the Montparnasse Tower, being 56 stories high with spectacular views across the skyline of all of Paris. The Eiffel Tower all tarted up and sparkling for Christmas. The city alive and buzzing with the festive cheer in the air.
Beautiful views make me hunger and luckily we were in stumbling distance from Invictus restaurant. A cosy pad with super friendly staff with mouthwatering French dishes on offer.
For my starter, I went for the pork trotter terrine with marinated mushrooms. The meat was meltingly tender with nuggets of buttery fat which was cut through beautifully with the sharpness from the marinade on the mushrooms.
As ever being a greedy pig, I got to try everyone else’s dishes as we passed the plates around for sampling. The anchovies on a tomato tartare were refreshing with a hint of the ocean with the contrast of the fillets, milky gentle salt from the white and the more punchy flavour from the darker fillets.
A white bean salad with country sausage was a simple but perfectly flavoursome plate of food. With the sausage adding a salty, crispy element to the creamy beans.
On to the main action segment. The pork belly with creamy mash was simple but let the flavours of the meat shine through. Delicious.
There were two beef dishes on the menu, firstly a beef stew with root vegetables and a rich dark sauce. The beef so tender, by simply looking at it will cause it to fall apart.
The second beef dish, which I went for, was a fillet of beef (I went for rare) with the most creamy mash potato I have ever had. The steak was cooked beautifully, seasoned perfectly and sliced like butter. I really didn’t want to finish this plate of food. Perfect.
The dessert menu was an epic list of all things sweet and good in the world. It was really hard to make a decision.
Red wine poached pears with ginger tuille and ice cream. Beautifully balanced of light and rich flavours.
I went for the grapefruit salad with almond milk ice cream and warm financier. This was a lovely light dessert with the crunchy outer of the financier and soft interior to off set the sharpness of the grapefruit. After my beast of a steak, I don’t think I would of managed one of the heavier plates.
The chocolate mousse was a masterpiece and utterly divine. I may of stole a spoonful or two of this sexy little number.
Another French classic featured on the menu in the form of millefeuille. ‘A Thousand Leaves’ Splinters of crisp puff pastry nestled with pillows of crème patisserie. Classic, simple, delicious.
It was a wonderful evening with delicious food, plenty of wine, great friends and belly-aching laughs. The fun continued when we hit the theme parks the next day. It was one of the best weekends I had had in years and very lucky to have spent it with twelve hilarious friends, whom can even make the happiest place in the world with princess castles and rocket rides even more magical. I may have even got in a Little Mermaid song or two over the weekend…..
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