My Perfect Day - Victor Lugger

Urbanologist and restaurateur Victor Lugger, co-founder of Big Mamma group, shares with U his 'Perfect Day' in Paris.

How do you start your day in Paris?

A day in Paris starts like any good day, with a home made breakfast at home with my wife Apolline and the kids, and some good classical music. I am a huge fan and everyone is fond of it at home. I usually will cook fluffy napoletean-ricotta pancakes and make French press coffee. It is the coffee we roast at Big Mamma. Everyone these days is a fan of the acid/red fruit/herbal coffees from Northern Europe. I love the dark black creamy chocolately and hazelnutty coffee from Naples. 

Leisurely lunch places go to?

I’ll avoid talking about our restaurants. I love a sandwich at Cosi in Saint Germain or the Paul Bert near our first restaurant East Mamma in the 11th, it is a perfectly executed traditional French brasserie. Try the Marche des Enfants Rouges in Le Marais for a cool lunch with friends, a market with many open kitchens (such as Moroccan, Italian, etc.) and you share a table with the locals.

Favourite way to pass the time in Paris?

I could spend my entire life in the food markets here and there. My favorite is the Boulevard de Charonne on Saturdays. From fishmongers to cheese shops, not to mention the mountains of vegetables.

Favourite Paris landmarks, and why?

The best chef:Eric Frechon. The best crêpe: Breizh Café. The best street food:L'as du Fallafel and most important, the best baguette: Madrange on Rue Mouffetard, the one with grains on it. Absolute killer.

Tipple of choice and favourite cocktail hangouts? 

Le Syndicat. Cocktails are great. And atmosphere is insane, because the team behind it rocks. And they love good music. Go there for a 80's NYC rap atmosphere with "50 best" cocktails. 

Favourite dining destination, and why?

I love to dine at Pink Mamma, with its grill and Barolo wine menu, and get a drink in the speakeasy downstairs, which is hidden through the meat fridge. I often stop by at Septime without a reservation at 7:00pm sharp. The counter seats are first come first serve.

Final stop for a nightcap, and why?

I am a morning person. I can advise on breakfast (go to Oberkampf Cafe or Boulangerie Chambelland), or tell you about the Rungis Market at 4am, which is an amazing destination if you wake up early because of jetlag. If you go there, get a cab, drive there, pay the fee at the entry and whoop, you are in. Wander in the game and fish sections and have a meat dish with white wine at 6am.

Rest hangover remedy?

Take an Advil when you go to bed. And the Piscine Pontoise (75005) is amazingly authentic and beautiful. If at 4pm, you don't feel better, head for La Maison des Trois Thés, which is my favorite place in Paris - and drink tea. It is, as far as tea is concerned, the center of the world to me. And strangely enough it is in the 5th in Paris.

Where next on your travels?

Japan (which I adore for just going out in the streets is an amazing adventure), Italy (I go every month) and the English countryside: we moved as a family to London 6 months ago and there is still a lot I want to discover. And so many country pubs I want to try.

Victor Lugger is co-founder of Paris-based restaurant group Big Mamma (pictured with business partner Tigrane Seydoux), which have taken the French capital by storm and has now also launched in London with Gloria. Victor was previously Deputy CEO at My Major Company and is a masters graduate from Paris’s HEC Business School.

Ideal For