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May 3, 2007 11:52 AM

Chez Denise

Does this restaurant have a website? Can't find. Would like to email them for reservations and see many on this board have made reservations. Did you phone?

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  1. The one time my husband and I went for lunch, we just wandered in from the street without a reservation and lucked out. It was a memorable meal that lasted at least 3 - maybe 4 - hours. While it was all quite wonderful, you shouldn't expect "fine dining." The atmosphere is very casual and down-to-earth - even a little rowdy. The bread is from the shop of the late Lionel Poilane and the frites are divine. What kept us there for such a long meal was that we made friends with the Parisians seated to both sides of us and ended up sharing tastes of everything with them - some of their fries while we waited for ours, a sample of my lamb chops traded for someone else's calves liver, etc. We traded restaurant recommendations and discussed politics (they were a lot more informed - and opinionated - than we were). By the time we finished our meals, one of our neighbors quietly ordered dessert for all of us. Then my husband went to the bar and ordered cognac and armagnac for the entire group. By then, the place had just about emptied and the restaurant host, whose photo was reproduced on the paper table cloths (now deceased, I believe) gave me a taste of the fish mousse he was eating. Unbelievable!

    I couldn't find a website for them, either, under the name Chez Denise or under the more formal name, La Tour de Montlhery. But here's the address and phone number. I hope you get to have a meal - and as much fun as we did.

    Chez Denise - La Tour de Montlhéry
    5, rue des Prouvaires
    Paris, France 75001
    01 42 36 21 82

    8 Replies
    1. re: Deenso

      No website nor e-mail (at least not for potential guests). Old fashioned bistrots like these, usually don't care about such modern things. And as long as they are full, why bother? The place hasn't changed a bit since ever. And yes, no fine dining, but it's a fun place, if you want to spend some pleasant moments.

      1. re: Dodo

        That's a hard question to answer. I don't know if they have continuous service. If they do, I shouldn't think you'd have any problem getting a table at that hour. If you want to play it safe, your best bet would be to send an email or fax to your concierge a few weeks ahead of time and ask the hotel to make a reservation for you (assuming you're staying in a hotel). Otherwise, since they haven't got a website, you should probably give them a call.

        1. re: Deenso

          We are staying in an apt. But, I will try and get someone to make the call for me. Thanks

      2. re: Deenso

        Thanks a lot for the info. It is our sons first visit to Paris. He will arrive a few days after us. I wanted to take him there for his first Parisian meal and just wanted to get an idea of the menu items. We would probably go for a early dinner since he will be tired after the long flight from Calif. 5 or so. Do you think we could get in then. Or at least have drinks while waiting for a table?

        1. re: parisbully

          5 oclock is VERY early for anywhere in France. but I don't know about Chez Denise. Some wine bars stay open all day long, but most places don't start serving until 7, at the earliest.

          1. re: ChefJune

            I read that they were open 24 hours a day. That is one of the main reasons we were going there on his first day.

            1. re: parisbully

              Chez Denise should be open 24 hrs a day, but not the weekends. Even if there was a wait at 5'clock, which would be doubtful, there is a bar where you can order great housewine! Enjoy!

          2. re: parisbully

            I ate at Chez Denise a week ago. I might be wrong, but I don't believe they begin their dinner service until 7:30. They stay open very late and serve also lunch but I am under the impression that they close to reset for the dinner rush.

            As June said, 7:30 is an '"early" dinner in Paris and is generally an american thing. Snacks and wine at a cafe or wine bar would be your best bet @ 5pm.

            I thought the food was good and very authentic. The portions are huge. I had fish, my friends had lamb and beef with marrow bones. We all shared and agreed that the lamb and beans were the best. The food was good but I would not call it memorable. The house wine is decent.

            We arrived at around 9 and it was not full. It was full and noisy by 10 and the other patrons (mostly foreigners, it seemed) were boisterous and friendly.

            I am surprised to be told that the bread was from Poilane. It was good (as is all bread there) but again, not memorable.

            It was a pleasant and fun evening spent there -- it was an experience to be sure -- but by no means our best meal or best experience. I'd definitely go back; my friends would not.

        2. a wonderful place, perhaps my long time favorite restaurant in paris. no website to my knowledge; i just walk in when i get there. you'll have a ball!

          1. I am planning to visit this place also after seeing the No Reservation episode on Paris, and the book I got "Great eats in Paris" stated that it's open 24 hours with continuous service, but gave specific times for lunch and dinner, so not sure what kind of food is available at other times.

            It's closed from 6AM Saturday through Sunday, and the usual summer shutdown.

            I hope the dinner isn't really 3-4 hours long!

            1 Reply
            1. re: notmartha

              It is not a place to rush in and out of, as the tables are sort of communal, and everyone including the staff are very friendly.
              I didn't discover Chez Denise until a couple of years ago, and it has become Hubbies favourite.
              Great relaxed evening.
              We do have the hotel make reservations, and we have been seated almost immediately.