Scoop

For the first five years in Paris, I wouldn’t go to Scoop. I’d walk by, scan the selections of hamburgers and “les wraps”, and keep going. Even though I was intrigued with the list of house-made ice creams, I’d always reason to myself, “I didn’t move to Paris to eat a hamburger.”

scooper burger vanilla shake drinker

I was reading recently about a site called My American Market that carries American foods, mostly targeted at expats living in France. There’s some hard-to-find baking products, like unsweetened chocolate and molasses, but there’s also plenty of goofy stuff, like muffin mixes, trail bars, and something called Molly McButter.

A few people took exception, saying that they were presenting Europeans with a less-than-exemplary view of American food. But even to those of us who don’t buy packaged mixes and such, who live abroad, it’s impossible not to feel a twinge of nostalgia when you see those familiar things that are simply part of our culture, for better or worse. And every once in a while, it’s not going to kill you to eat one non-locally grown, bright-orange, peanut butter-filled cheese cracker. (Granules of non-fat butter, though, I’m so not sure about.)

scoop burger

A few years ago, I caved and had a burger in Paris. And you now see hamburgers on lots of café menus, although French people eat their burger with a knife and fork. (I was served one once with only a top bun. I think they heard my accent américain and didn’t want me making a spectacle of myself in front of everyone else.) Although there are plenty of burgers around, some are good, and some aren’t.

But folks kept telling me that Scoop had one of the best in town. So I finally went, and was sorry I waited so long. I ordered the Route 66, a lunch special (€15) that lets you pick any burger on the menu (except the ‘Build Your Own‘, which is fine, because when I go out to eat I don’t mind letting someone else do the work) and a milkshake, made with their housemade ice cream. The waitress asked when I wanted the milkshake.

“Um…with my hamburger?”, thinking that she meant she’d bring it before, whenever it was ready. Then I noticed the table next to me, after their plates were cleaned, the waitress brought their milkshakes—for dessert. Then it hit me that it would be odd for a French person to have ice cream with their lunch. Still, you can take the boy out of the country…, but I had my shake with my burger.

I’ve gone to Scoop a few times since and each time, we were the only Americans in there; the other guests were invariably French people. I haven’t tried any of les wraps or the quesadillas, because the burgers are pretty great. I’m a fan of the Bacon Cheeseburger, which has, of course, bacon as well as onion jam and cheddar cheese, although I wish they’d use a true English cheddar rather than what was melted on top: orange belongs in crackers, only. And the bun, while tasty—both the top and bottom, would be the perfect if they grilled or toasted them first. Aside from that, the burger is big, juicy, and served as rare as you want it.

chocolate cupcake chocolate spoon

Desserts are all-American as well, and my friend Olivier couldn’t help from ordering a chocolate cupcake as well as a second milkshake. Oh, to be 29 again. I’d mentioned cupcakes were becoming hip in Paris, and although he didn’t offer to share, I was happy to see he enjoyed his very much. (He, like the woman at the neighboring table, ate their cupcakes with a small spoon.) But after all, I’d taken him out to lunch a few weeks ago and ended up at a restaurant I didn’t realize was vegetarian. And while I enjoyed it, I don’t think it was exactly his cup of tea.

And neither is coffee. So I downed a quick café express, French-style, while he finished off his cupcake, with his spoon (French-style), and that was the Scoop.

Scoop
154, rue Saint Honoré (1st)
Tél: 01 42 60 31 84

(Update: Scoop was recently sold and changed owners, so I’m unsure of the current menu and what is offered there.)

Related Posts

Where to find a great hamburger in Paris

Where to get a good cup of coffee in Paris

Nopa: The burger that knocks it out of the ballpark (San Francisco)

Joe’s Cable Car Restaurant (San Francisco)

Ingredients for American Baking in Paris

Paris Dining Archives

Two Great Dining Guides to Paris

Vegetarian Restaurants in Paris

61 comments

  • I guess if you live there the then you would get that craving for a good burger, but as I am only ever a visitor, burgers are the last thing on my mind.

    There are a few ‘gourmet’ burger restaurants here and there in the UK, I am yet to try one and feel now maybe the time to give it a go… I just hope they have a good ice cream milkshake on offer or I will not be happy!

    Alas when in France I always seek out Onion Soup… its a classic and something I truly have to force myself to stop eating when I make it….
    Dylan

  • David,

    This post had me salivating as you led up to that great Scoop burger (what are wraps anyway?). Funny because on the eve of my departure back home to Japan after 3 weeks in California, I am inexplicably CRAVING a juicy hamburger. And I have been thinking and thinking that that is exactly what I wanted to come out of the kitchen there on Shattuck Ave. A fabulous small farmer hand cut patty slapped on an Acme roll (do they make rolls?) with some version of incredible french fries (who cares, frites or little curly things)….and of course a homemade milkshake. With the lunch.

    Oh my god, forget what I said about the Mexican food. I’m jonesing for the HB. No, the bacon CB. Damn, why did you mention all this? Now I have to go home and make it.

    And the HB’s sound better in Paris than they do in SF. Though maybe I’m just not on the right track. I’m also guessing “les frites” will also be much better, especially if a little homemade mayonnaise is involved.

    Thanks for this post. The life of an ex-pat gives us strange cravings.

    Nancy

  • Eating a cupcake with a spoon… now that’s funny.

  • Ice cream is perfectly acceptable at any time of the day, I’m sure! It’s just dairy and sugar, really, so it’s like a pain au chocolat with a cafe au lait, right? :P

  • Eating a cupcake with a spoon… love it! While living in Greece our greek and turkish neighbors went crazy for my muffins and cupcakes. It was hard not to giggle the first time our lovely neighbor used a fork and knife to eat a cupcake that I served with our afternoon coffee. Oreos and jumbo bags of M&Ms were also a big hit. I guess they appreciated some of America’s fun foods.

  • People everywhere may not always appreciate AMERICA, but they always appreciate AMERICAN STUFF. Food included.

    I think all expats eventually cave to old habits, for me, it’s a good Wiener Schnitzel once in a while.

  • Ahhhh, Cheeseburger in Paradise! ( I like mine with with lettuce and tomato, heinz 57 and French Fried potatoes…..)

  • I can’t think of anything more delightful than eating a cupcake with a tiny spoon in Paris. How wonderful!

  • A cupcake with a dainty small spoon. . . .very “cute”! Might be hard for me to do when I want to rip the wrapper off but if I were in Paris, it’d be a “compromise” I would be most willing to do.

  • This reminds me of when I was living in London. We were able to get almost every comfort from home–except for Kraft cheese! I missed those gross, processed yellow slices in my grilled cheese.

    And how fitting–the restaurant is on rue St Honore, the patron saint of pastry chefs!

  • I lived in France (near Nice) in the 80’s and remember going to a special “American Night” at a local club/restaurant. I ordered the burger, and it came complete with both buns – and a fried egg laid neatly over the top bun. Tasty, but slightly shocking!

    The fries, however, were divine.

  • This looks great David!

  • I love this post.

  • David – I think I will use “I’m David Lebovitz’ son he never had” as a pick up line tonight.
    I will of course keep you posted on the physical effciciency of your virtual notoriety ;-)

    Everyone – David is obviously fishing for compliments here. I suspect he’s actually a tad younger than me. Well, he clearly drinks more than I do…

  • Jod: I never took to oranges slices of cheese, or even orange cheddar. Although I do like Mimolette.

    Nancy: There’s some great burgers in San Francisco. I linked to a few places at the end of the post. Zuni also makes a great burger, although it’s only available later in the evening. But is well-worth waiting up for!

    JB: It’s hard to get good frites in Paris, and Scoop doesn’t offer them because, I suspect, they don’t have the space for a deep fryer. That’s irksome, although the burger is very, very good.

    Olivier: How very convenient, for you to use my name to gain access to a young woman’s fancy. And if it doesn’t work, for you to cast the blame on me.

    I’m not sure where you got the impression that I drink more than you (which is something you’ve proved countless times before) since you had two milkshakes, and I only had one. All I know is that if I was indeed your father, someone would be a in line for a good spanking. Unless you get one tonight, that is…

  • I’m definitely looking forward to trying Scoop. Not that I’m a fan of hamburgers but it’s a nice change from Frenchie food.

  • I can totally get behind eating a cupcake with a spoon! The way the frosting is mounded on top around the U.S., it makes total sense. (unless it’s Hostess cuppies)

    I’ll take my bacon cheeseburger with some caramelized onions and a scoop of coleslaw on it, thanks. Oh..and a bottom bun, too.

  • A cupcake with a spoon…
    That reminds me of a high school friend who ate bananas with a spoon. It was an affectation, but I gave it a whirl and it did elevate the banana eating experience.
    Funny about the milkshake for dessert, I can see how it makes more sense that way, now that you mention it.

  • do they serve the cupcakes with a spoon or did he just use on already on the table? And is it a teaspoon (usually on the saucer when you get coffee/tea in the US)? that is adorable.

  • I don’t suppose you have any tastings our tours for April 12th to 16th by any chance do you?

    I’m over doing the Paris Marathon before spending a week getting rid of some of the healthyness I’ll habe built up with good food, wine and lots of chocolate!

  • These look devine. Although I do not eat red meat anymore (I used to be addicted to sliders and any sort of great burger) I can still appreciate a nice one! And you can’t go wring with finishing a meal with a milkshake. What a delightful treat!

    ~GG

  • Sorry about the couple typos in the above post. You have to love the touch keyboards. :-) Happy Friday!

    ~GG

  • I know this is primarily a post about burgers and shakes, but seriously? How are we supposed to focus on burgers when you link to a site that leads one to photos of Olivier and Nicolas? C’est pas possible. Mais… merci beaucoup. xo

  • I often wonder if the reason Americans eat cake with a fork is due to those old Duncan Hines (I think) commercials where they pick up the cake bite from the bottom of the utensil… Australians also eat their cake with a spoon (Katia tells me). And the French think it’s perfectly acceptable to pick up asparagus and eat it with your fingers. Funny.

    I had une Parisienne visit this summer, and she was blown away by how good the American food was, even the burgers at the baseball park. “It’s the meat!” she concluded.

    But I agree–to be truly exceptional, the bun must be toasted, with butter. If you’re ever in Madison, WI, I’ve got a dive, hole-in-the-wall cop bar for you to check out. You won’t regret it.

  • I don’t know if I’d eat a burger in France, purely because of the other culinary attractions and distractions. But a cupcake needs to be placed squarely (entirely, even) in one’s cakehole! Gorgeous pics, David.

  • Glad you found a place to get a burger fix in Paris! Even if you do have to eat it with a knife and fork and wait till desset for that milkshake…it’s nice to sometimes have a taste of home.

  • What kind of beef do they use in France? Thanks for the post.
    Matteo Fagin

  • La Rêveuse : in Australia we would usually only eat cake with a spoon or cake fork if it’s a messy, creamy sort of cake and/or you’re at a formal sort of do. At home or more casual occasions we may even eat gooey cakes without utensils and then just lick our fingers :-)

    If you order cake at a restaurant or cafe they will usually give you a fork/spoon, but those do tend to be large pieces of gooey sorts of cake, often accompanied by cream or even ice cream. I’ve never seen anyone eat a cupcake with a spoon – either at home or in a cafe.

  • Hugs and kisses to you from my oldest friend and ex-bakery partner Jacquie Lee. We assume she is the Jacquie who dosen’t like coconut (and still dosen’t) from Chez Panisse.

    Love your blog and look forward to my next trip to Paris.

  • My earliest memory of my father is watching him eat everything-cake, eggs, English muffins, everything-with a knife in the right hand and a fork in the left. He’s French. I’m not. But, I thought he looked so Fancy Nancy eating with two utensils and never setting down his knife that I began imitating him. Needless to say, I’m all “growed up” now and I still eat a cupcake with a knife and a fork. But, now you say the spoon is the proper utensil for cupcake eating. All these years I had it wrong! You’ve just burst my Fancy Nancy bubble.

  • My goodness, the idea of a cheeseburger for 15 euros? We have a famous burger here in LA at a little pub called Father’s Office, which has become somewhat of a cult favorite. It goes for around 13 US dollars – and that’s considered a premium price. But 15 Euros? Yikes!

  • Oh yes! I know Molly McButter. It’s a powdered butter-flavored substitute for people who hate themselves and feel the need to punish themselves via baked potato. Molly is a second cousin to Mrs. Dash, designed for people who continually lie to themselves.
    No, I say, it’s not better than salt.
    (But I…. really…. can’t believe it’s not butter, though I will contend it’s likely a draw on the healthiness aspect, adverts aside.)

  • g: Prices in France (and most other European countries) include the tax as well as service, which in the states hovers at around 18%. So those are included in the price. So even though €15 seems like a shocker, it includes everything…including the milkshake!

    Susan: I was trying not to out her, but she left a message on my Facebook page. But I still couldn’t convince her to like coconut. Some folks never learn : )

  • Okay…I’m just saying…a spoon is what you preschoolers to eat birthday cake so they won’t poke their eye out running around with a fork.
    Signed,
    A mom

  • I took a look at Scoop’s website and they have a Better Homes and Garden cookbook
    displayed on a shelf behind the bar — they must have talked with my Mom! Her fav back in the 50’s…

  • This reminds me of the hamburger I had in Pamplona last summer. I was both curious about Spanish “hamburgers” and kind of desperate, as almost everything outside of the old town shuts down for the day by about 2:00 pm during San Fermin. The French version looks a lot better than the Spanish one–the meat was all wrong and it had sort of a white mayonnaise-y substance all over it. After that, I went back to a steady diet of cold bocadillos.

  • Dawn, I’m with you…I’ve lost all train of thought about what my comment should be about with the links provided. Good gracious, its all we can do to concentrate with the author at hand, but then the link…..

    Olivier how was that?…do you think that satisfied the need of compliments he was fishing for:) LOL! Have a great weekend!

  • Being a San Franciscan, I always wonder if French expats here care for or even eat at our French restaurants. My small french circle like to cook their own french food at home. Plenty of french servers though in the Chez Pappa group.

  • David… I’m sorry to report that dropping a DL bomb is no passport for steamy sex in Paris. Awesome treatment at a vegan place on the other hand… Guess I should learn the real pleasures of life.

    Dawn/SSS… That is so very kind of you (and oh so considerate to include me while Nico truly is the only good looking guy at O Chateau). Well that is permanent staff, cause I must say that our sommeliers tend to be hot: http://www.o-chateau.com/about-us/our-sommeliers.

  • Haha…the memories. I was once at a dinner party in France, where while the adults were all tucking in to foie gras creme brulee and beautifully (if a little anally) plated meat and gratin, the kids received “am-bourg-ers” with shoddy looking supermarket buns, plastic cheese and beef burgers that looked absolutely revolting. Admittedly, I am a vegetarian, but memories of those burgers still make me shudder.

  • LOL! Olivier that was too funny! Thanks for my first laugh of the day!

  • Something strange happened about two years ago…I started eating all my “handheld” foods burgers, muffins, sandwiches, cupcakes etc with utensils. It all came about to help me slow things down a bit, to learn how to savor each bite. Guess it is also trés francais! Wow, a cultured little gal living in the OC. It really does keep me from inhaling food and keeps the fingers clean. Win, win. I too would have had my milkshake for dessert. I think I belong in Paris!

  • You didn’t move to paris to have a burger, so you wouldn’t have a burger at all? That seems kind of irrational. You want a burger, they have burgers, what’s the problem?

  • Were you reading my mind? I’ve been quite happy to partake in the local fare in Paris and I’ve only been here for 2 months. However, I had a wicked craving for a hamburger this week that has gone unfulfilled. Thanks for the tip! I will surely be there within moments.

    And even though I had a cookie baking fiasco recently, I still would not cave in and resort to My American Market. At least not yet. I need to work with the materials at hand, even if they are in metrics and I am forced to make cookies in a bucket! (well, check back with me in a month…I may have surrendered by then!)

  • I’m American, and eat my cupcakes with a little spoon. Mostly because I love eating cakes with little spoons. Glad to know I’m secretly french.

  • yeah what’s with cupcakes becoming cool in Paris (eight years after overpriced terrible cupcakes took over new york?). it sort of makes me sad, considering the french have such better pastries and cakes. but i have yet to have a truly excellent cupcake. they may exist.

    a bientot
    the Paris Food Blague

  • Every once a while, I have to have a hamburger too. Few foods satisfy the way a hamburger does.

    Bonne soirée!

    Nisrine

  • Okay, you were saying something about hamburgers, but I’ve completely forgotten about it because I clicked on Dawn’s link and came across the picture of Monsieur Nicolas…oh my. Yes, please.

  • One of my favorite Paris restaurants. (I like it better than most burger and shake joints in the U.S.) I’ve developed a serious cupcake addiction, and I’m thinking it may be time to go into cupcake rehab to kick the habit, so I’m thinking I’ll have to stay away from Scoop for a bit.

    Maybe.

    (I’m totally jealous of Olivier’s metabolism.)

  • do you miss the states? it looks like an amazing place to live.

  • Olivier – your sommeliers are pretty hot. But I have the strangest sense of deja-vu… as if I’ve seen them before. I guess some people just have familiar faces. ;)

    xo – D

  • The best cheeseburger I ever ate, hands down, was in Paris at the Publicis Brasserie. It was my first trip to Paris, and I admit, everything tasted better than it ever had before. I was slightly embarrassed to order a cheeseburger, but since I had my 4 month old daughter with me at the time, I felt people kind of let me slide a bit on etiquette. It was fantastically delicious, and I can still see and taste it in my mind. I would order it again in a heartbeat. And I even gave up meat in November, and I would still order this burger. Next time I’m in Paris, we might give Scoop a try!

  • i knew I should have eaten my dinner before looking at your blog …now I’m really hungry!

  • I lived in Kiev, Ukraine in the early Nineties. There was a grocery store of Western European and American foods that we went to every week. That’s where we bought laundry soap from England and hot chocolate mix from Poland. We called it the Dollar Store, because that’s the only currency they’d take. Seems funny to think that Dollar Stores here mean something totally different, as in cheap plastic stuff from China that breaks two hours after you get it home.

    Never could get my hands on a burger in the Ukraine. I would have loved a shake, too. Borscht can get old after more than a year of it.

    Love your site and your books!

  • I’ve had some pretty good burgers since moving to France…admittedly they are better in Paris than in the hinterlands where I live.

    In general, when I do crave a food from the states (mexican, mostly) … I prepare it myself. With a little effort, one can find just about anything needed to do so … save cilantro (during winter) or good peppers (in general).

    Myam market misrepresents itself as selling ‘food’ items, in my opinion. For the most part it is packaged, processed gunk that shouldn’t be consumed no matter where one lives. In reading their comments … website or FB … it is embarrassing to see everyone crowing over shake & bake, Kraft macaroni & ‘cheese’, or the plethora of junk candy. No wonder we (Americans) have such a negative rep in France when it comes to food.

    Now if an online market could put together reasonable products … spices, grains/flours, dried peppers, etc. … combined with local items to prepare authentic dishes, one might have something of interest.

    I’ll give them credit for something, though. They led me to your blog which looks quite interesting indeed!

  • A friend recently introduced me to your blog and I’m so happy she did. The photographs are beautiful and you have such a fun, easy to read writing style. I’m hooked!

  • Oh%$#@ damn why do I leave on the 24th :(
    I would have loved to attend the tasting.
    Scoop, I don’t know..it’s hard to come here and eat a burger..
    I’ll give it a think..the ice cream is another story though
    merci David

  • The best burgers in Paris are at the Refectoire in the 11eme.

  • Inspiring. Excellent to read, learn, and taste!

  • Ah.. A really good milkshake is.. So good!
    Very happy to be in such an insightful mood.

  • The new owners say that they have been around. Could you update your main ice cream list? Now it’s a bakery called Oh Mon Cake! (http://www.yelp.fr/biz/oh-mon-cake-paris) and they are just okay, unfortunately.