Okay I am off to Paris next week. I have reservations for the following restuarnats:
Au Bon Accueil
leaving a couple open lunhes and dinners for some last minute spur of the moment decisions.
I have not be able to book AuFil de Saisons on Tuesday night because they are closed for the French Holiday VE Day. I have tried a few other places and they are also closed. Will it be a real problem finding a place on Tuesday to have lunch and/or dinner? Willies Wine Bar was suggested and that would be a possibility for lunch. Would I be a complete fool to take a dinner cruise the night of VE Day?? I thought that it might be a nice relaxing evening, just cruising the Seine and relaxing. But if the food is the pits I would rather just buy a picnic dinner and sit by the river and eat. Does anyone know of an upscale dinner cruise that serves good food and wine?? Thank you for all suggestions!!
From everything I've read, the best dinner cruise to be found is through Yachts de Paris. The boats are small and the food is supposed to be far better than any other cruise. Check out the website at www.yachtsdeparis.fr. (Click on the English flag at the bottom for the translated website.) However, the best part of taking a Seine cruise is to be able to sit outside and soak up the sun and the breeze...and if you are eating, you will be eating indoors and have to watch Paris through the windows. We opted to take a non-dinner cruise and loved being out in the open. I think your idea of a picnic sounds great.
My wife and I took a Yachts de Paris dinner cruise 2 days ago.
Booking: Wasn't bad, WE WEREN'T WITH A GROUP AND BOOKED AS INDIVIDUALS.
Boat: Was beautiful, only about 30 couples so it was very intimate. Views were extraordinary from every table.
Food: Apps,, desert and cheese were great. Our main course, the fish, was undercooked. The website lists the fish but it wasn't on the boat menu so we had to specifically ask for it (we knew this was a bad sign). I'm sure the lamb was fine based on the overall quality of the other courses.
Cost: We paid 179EUR excluding drinks. The drinks were very expensive 25EUR for a glass of wine, 100+EUR for a bottle. When I tried to upgrade to drinks inclusive, they would not let me (which led me to believe the drinks inclusive cruise may have been a different boat). I felt a bit like they were trying to push the drinks and pictures, but I expected a bit of this. The exchange rate on charges were also a bit exorbitant, they gave us 1.41 when other restaurants were giving 1.36.
Overall: We were satisfied and glad we cancelled our trip on Bataux Parisian. We passed the boat we would have been on where 300+ people were jockying for position.
Don't understand "they gave us 1.41 when other restaurants were giving 1.36" If you pay by credit card your bank (or CC issuer, visa, MC, Amex) not the merchant determines the rate.
If you were paying with US currency and they were kind enough to take it you get what you deserve. There is no obligation for a French merchant to accept USD for payment.
That day we had other charges ON THE SAME CARD, with 1.36 as the rate. I didn't pay in USD cash as you suggest. I travel in Europe monthly and pay close attention to the rates given by establishments.
I do not think its just a coincidence that I got charged a much high rate by them than other restaurants and museums that day.
Again, we had a great time on the cruise but this board is to inform people what they're in for. Had I known I would get a 1.41 rate, I would have paid in Euros.
Le Pamphlet was one of our favourite restaurants in Paris. We liked it so much on our first visit that we went back for the last meal of our 3 week stay in April/May 2006. Great value.
Lunch at Taillevent (same trip) was the best experience we've ever had in a restaurant - going back for dinner in September.
Another really memorable meal was a picnic on this little island on the Seine in the 16th, watching the Tour Eiffel light up. May be a safer option than cruise boat food – and you can still do a standard river cruise if you want to see the city from the water at night.