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Fixed Price Dinner at Jules Verne Paris?

j
JIM in Phila-PA-USA Aug 10, 2000 11:10 AM

It is my understanding that Jules Verne/Eiffel Tower/Paris has a fixed price LUNCH at about US$50 (please correct if this is inaccurate).

(1) Do they also have a Fixed Price DINNER?
(2) If yes, how much (prefer US$, but can convert) and could you describe a typical menu?
(3) If no, what's a good "Plan B" so we get a reasonable variety without (a) getting more food than we need just to taste a bit of everything and (b) thereby killing ourselves financially
(4) Is gratuity included or extra?
(5) How far in advance to make reservations, esp. to get good views etc
(6) Are there any hints/"tricks" to getting best service/"extra's" -- want to take the wife for her 40th birthday.
(7) Wine included or extra? If extra, how much for a modest bottle or 2 (assuming they will recommend)?

Also, we are complete tourist types, don't speak a lick of French (so will be unable to really read menu's) and don't know one bottle of wine from another (we drink Beringer and LIKE it, but we still appreciate good eats) -- are these going to stand against us badly in this setting, or are they patient with "our type"?

Thanks all. 8/10/00

  1. h
    Heather Krupa Sep 2, 2000 09:35 PM

    I was wondering all the same things. Did you ever get any answers?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Heather Krupa
      j
      Jay Feb 12, 2001 10:04 PM

      I also have the same question and would like to know if any one has either an e-mail addess for Le Jules Verne restaurant or a telephone number? Thanks.

    2. m
      magnolia Feb 13, 2001 05:10 AM

      I never saw the original post or I would have been happy to respond. I hope it's not too late, but for the record...I can answer some of your questions off the top of my head, but for others I would call. However, I've been trying on & off for 1/2 hour and can't get through.

      PHONE NUMBER (when dialling from US) 011 33 1 45556144
      They also take reservations by email: tour.eiffel.rv@elior.fr

      (1) Do they also have a Fixed Price DINNER?
      No. Just lunch.

      (2) If yes, how much (prefer US$, but can convert) and could you describe a typical menu?) Dinner is
      a la carte between 600-800FF (between $100 - $140)
      (I'm rounding the exchange rate to $1 = 5FF)

      (3) If no, what's a good "Plan B" so we get a reasonable variety without (a) getting more food than we need just to taste a bit of everything and (b) thereby killing ourselves financially

      Hmmm...depends what you are looking for. Any place in a super-touristy destination, particularly one with a view, would be expensive. Are you looking for a view? Nice interiors? Great food? SOunds like a special birthday. The Eiffel tower has a couple of other restaurants...see their site (linked below - it has a version in English if you click on the US/UK flag...) for details if that's where you want to be.

      If you're looking for a blowout at any of the 'big' names, lunch is your best bet. One of my favourites, though pretty pricey, is La Grand Vefour. Their prix fixe lunch is about 400FF ($80) It's a get dressed up place with fabulous interiors and wonderful food. But at dinner it's a bit more expensive even than Jules Verne.

      Again, across the board, you'd be better off going for lunch at any big name if over-spending is a concern. It's on 17 rue de Beaujolais, phone 33 1 42965627

      (4) Is gratuity included or extra?
      Gratuity is included - this is true of nearly all french restaurants (it will say "service y compris/service compris" or "SC") If not, they will make this VERY obvious - in large writing probably handwritten, it will say SERVICE NON COMPRIS, or SNC.

      (5) How far in advance to make reservations, esp. to get good views etc.

      As far in advance as possible but I don't think they'll let you reserve a table by the window (I could be wrong). You could try (une table a cote de la vitrine) If I recall correctly, though, all tables have a 'view'.

      (6) Are there any hints/"tricks" to getting best service/"extra's" -- want to take the wife for her 40th birthday.

      Smile a lot and have your wife (or any of the women) do the talking, if you have a waiter. Remember, this is France. And the older the waiter, the bigger the flirt. Tell them in advance that it's her birthday. (C'est l'anniversaire de mon marie")

      (7) Wine included or extra? If extra, how much for a modest bottle or 2 (assuming they will recommend)?

      Normally wine is not included in a prix fixe - if so, it would just be a glass of house. Jules Verne happens to have a really good wine list. Ask the sommelier for a recommendation - that is what he/she is there for.

      Also, we are complete tourist types, don't speak a lick of French (so will be unable to really read menu's) and don't know one bottle of wine from another (we drink Beringer and LIKE it, but we still appreciate good eats) -- are these going to stand against us badly in this setting, or are they patient with "our type"?

      Well...Jules Verne probably gets more tourists (English speaking ones) than French. So they should be used to this and someone should speak English very well. They should be 'patient'. A secret about the French (I grew up with 'em) is that they don't like to admit that they don't understand you, so their response is to appear obnoxious, as the intention is just to get rid of the person they can't understand in order to not suffer the humiliation. Newsflash: A French shop assistant (not the owner) would rather NOT make a sale than struggle with the language. Sadly this has translated into a reputation for snottiness and bad service. Just keep trying and insist.

      Their menu is probably translated (I speak French so I didn't pay attention). That said, the food is really French and really good.

      Hope this helps!

      Link: http://www.tour-eiffel.fr

      6 Replies
      1. re: magnolia
        p
        Pepper Feb 13, 2001 05:51 AM

        Great post.

        I must demur on Le Gran Vefour, though--I've been twice in the last few months, and they were among the most incompetent meals I've ever encountered in a major restaurant. Lobster that had practically dissolved with age; duck toughened to leather; the famous truffled ravioli cold and hard as rocks; various purees so underflavored that one would be hard-pressed to figure out what they were.

        And it's a shame, because it occupies what might be the single most beautiful restaurant space in the world. And the Savoyard cheeses are truly grand.

        One hears (as much as one hears these things) that Guy Martin's third star is not long for this world . . .

        1. re: Pepper
          m
          magnolia Feb 13, 2001 10:10 AM

          Wow! What a shame to hear it. I was last there...in April '00...I have heard that Guide Mich turn an embarrassingly blind eye to the infractions of confreres...

          1. re: magnolia
            j
            jason Feb 14, 2001 10:11 AM

            I would be interested in additional opinions regarding the Grand Vefour as it is high on my list of restaurants to try. In addition to its Michelin 3 stars, the Grand Vefour is one of 19 restaurants to receive a highest rating of 19/20 from the 2001 Gault Millau which has become highly credible in recent years. Patricia Wells writes very highly of it as well. I was unfortunately, I believed, not able to reserve a table for dinner the last time that I was in Paris although a tried months in advance. Lunch reservations are available, but its not the way that I prefer to spend 3+ hours in the heart of the afternoon. My personal observation regarding Pepper is that his opinions can be intemperate and are often wrong. Magnolia, I must admit that I don't understand the references in your post within the ellipses.

            1. re: jason
              m
              magnolia Feb 14, 2001 11:56 AM

              Jason...Which references? I seem to use lots of elipses...:-)

              If you mean the part about Guide Michelin, I have read and heard many times that it's far easier for restaurants in France to get stars than for restaurants in other countries to get stars; and conversely, a 'less worthy' restaurant in France might have stars but if that same restaurant were beamed to another country, it would not deserve them.

              If you're interested, I will try to find a link to something about Michelin...

              1. re: magnolia
                j
                jason Feb 14, 2001 12:17 PM

                Yes, that was my question, the Michelin Guide. I don't agree with the assertion, not yours, that lesser restaurants in France get more stars than elsewhere. I pesonally find that 3 star restaurants in France are generally superior to 3 star restaurants in other countries. In fact, the Michelin guide employs inspectors who are nationals of the countries for which their specific red guides are published. The real issue is more subtle, that is that Michelin's standards by which they train their inspectors are based on the principles of French cuisine. This leads them to favor what are essentially less good French restaurants over the best examples of a distinct national cuisine. This is especially true in Italy, where in the absence of an independent recommendation source, I personally view a Michelin star as a potential minus sign.

                1. re: jason
                  m
                  magnolia Feb 16, 2001 04:14 AM

                  Hmmm...something to keep in mind. I haven't eaten at a wide enough range of michelin any-stars to evaluate their methods or judgements.

                  But it makes sense that if their inspectors are trained with a technique or cuisine in mind, then there will be a certain bias. But the fact that there's publisher at all implies a bias anyway. Too bad they don't use truckdrivers as guides - bet they'd tell it like it is. After all, Michelin is a tire company, n'est ce pas?

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