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New Year's Eve in Paris

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Susan asked about London; I'm doing Paris on my layover from the North Africa trip. Hubby and three college-aged students (my kids plus a girlfriend) will be with us, and after all that airfare money is indeed a semi-issue. We will be in an apartment, and could cook....which frankly I'm leaning towards, especially since the kids want to go join the crowds at the Eiffel Tower after dinner (I'll skip that one...especially since the apartment DOES have a fireplace to curl up in front of :-). Any other suggestions for good places that wouldn't break the bank? My understanding is that a lot of Paris restaurants do special (expensive) menus, is that true? And NY eve is on a Sunday this year...will that complicate the choices?

As an alternative to NY Eve dinner, any suggestions for a nice New Years Day lunch? (or brunch?) Will there be a lot of places closed?

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  1. New Year's Eve is the feast of Saint Sylvester in France and many restaurants do indeed have special menus for the occasion. Many of them time the meal to end at midnight (too late for me)! We spent one New Year's Eve at the Jules Verne in the Eiffel Tower; wouldn't do that again! It was really crowded, long lines for the elevator and freezing cold! I think you're on the right track thinking of eating in. The traiteurs and charcuteries will have wonderful dishes for the holiday to choose from. Bring an oyster knife and open some of those, have some fois gras and a "plat prepare" from take out and light the fire!

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    1. re: Gratin

      I can't add much more to this comment except maybe a decent bottle of Trimbach or other Alsatian wine to go with the oysters and fois gras.

    2. With the money you don't spend, go to Les Caves du Taillevant and let them help you select a great wine and champagne for your at home New Year's dinner. Have fun. Of course, Auge is wonderful for wine purchases as well.

      1. We had a very nice time at Balzar (rue des Ecoles) on December 31, 1999. The mood was very festive (it was a rather special New Years Eve that year) and Balzar provided lots of party favors, including little paper horns, which people were using all evening to make noise. The food was good, and they had venison on the menu, which Balzar usually does not offer. It was a great place to spend a special evening. And as you may know, Balzar is not expensive and the service there is among the best in Paris for a brasserie of its type.