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Sunday Night Dinner in Paris

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ClippyZ May 8, 2007 02:24 PM

Hi, everyone --

I've been trolling the board getting suggestions for an upcoming trip to Paris. My husband and I arrive on a Sunday, and it's his first time in Paris. I'd like for his first meal to be memorable, but it seems as if Sunday nights are difficult to find decent places (perhaps especially because we're staying in a touristy area -- we didn't have choice in the hotel).

We're staying in the 8th, but I'd be willing to travel a bit. Casual/relaxed is preferred.

Thanks so much for your help, and I'll report back after the trip!

  1. purplescout May 23, 2007 09:54 PM

    Thanks to advice from this board, in February I enjoyed a warm welcome and a fine meal on Sunday night at Parc aux Cerfs (near Montparnasse) . The meal began with their house aperitif, which was a little sweet for my taste. The house olives served with the aperitif, on the other hand, were wonderful, spiked with fresh herbs. To start, I had a salad topped with a ribbon of Comte cheese and preserved cherries - it was wonderful. My friend had a salad of two cooked cabbages (red and white) topped with shrimp, all drizzled with a caramel-tasting dressing. Sounds odd, but it was great. I had a lamb shank for dinner, which proved to be a popular choice as we saw many other tables have the same. I enjoyed the flavorful, tender lamb with a sauce based on cider vinegar, as well as the green beans and tiny white beans that were served along with it. My companion had bar (fish) with sweet potatoes. Hers was ok, but not stellar. Dessert was an assortment of three cheeses, all excellent. With a bottle of red wine (not that memorable), the tab came to 123 Euros.

    1 Reply
    1. re: purplescout
      d
      Dodo May 24, 2007 12:43 AM

      Glad to hear you enjoyed Le Parc aux Cerfs. It's a safe bet on a Sunday. The lamb is among my favourite dishes there as are the the two starters you mention.
      I agree with you about the the house apéritif being a little too sweet. I should tell them. o;)

    2. voxbop May 21, 2007 02:39 PM

      Have I got a tip for you! Yves Camdebord's fabulous bistro in the 5th, Le Comptoir, which is impossible to get a reservation at during the week, doesn't take reservations on the weekend and serves an a la carte bistro menu. I was there in March and stopped in a Sunday night around 6:30, an off time for dining for most Parisians and we sat right down. The food is everything you want in a French Bistro but seldom get. It is some of the best food I've ever had in Paris.

      Le Comptoir
      Hôtel Relais Saint-Germain
      9, carrefour de l'Odéon
      Paris 75006
      phone: +33 (0)1 44 22 07 97
      fax: +33 (0)1 46 33 45 30

      1 Reply
      1. re: voxbop
        PhilD May 22, 2007 05:41 AM

        It is a good tip and I highly recomend it.

        However, it is wise to point out that during the week it is run as a bistro in the evenings but at the weekends it is a brasserie (also a brasserie at lunch on weekdays). Why is this important? Well the bistro experience is very different - it is a set menu, larger tables, fine linen, slightly more refined cooking, one sitting a night and booked solid for months. The brasserie has a different menu, smaller tables, quick efficient service, and takes no bookings turning the tables quite quickly.

        The brasserie menu sometimes features dishes that are being served on the bistro menu (check out the specials board as these are sometimes there) and the regular menu as some dishes that are derivations of bistro ones (the terrine with archichoke for example).

        The brasserie is very good, the bistro is better.

      2. l
        lexpatti May 11, 2007 06:49 AM

        Just got back and my most memoriable dinner was in the 7th, not a far walk from where you'll be (but I've now walked all of Paris so one end to the other seems like nothing now). :-) It's on 16 avenue Rapp - called Le Clos Des Gourmets. You'll definately want reservations, excellent prefix menu @ 32 e each. (their # is 01 45 51 75 61). You'll pinch yourself, food is soooo wonderful, service is excellent but you don't have to break the bank. Here's what will make it memorable as well. After dinner, walk a few blocks to watch the Eiffel Tower light up and shimmer for 10 minutes every hour on the hour after 10pm. It's absolutely beautiful. Have a blast, can't wait to go back. My son just moved there in March so he had time to scope out all the wonderful places for great prices, rather then tourist traps that get your money and no value. We had fabulous falafels in the park, oysters on the sidewalk in the latin quarters, etc. My favorite outdoor markets was in the Latin Quarters (not far from where you'll be) was Rue Mouffetard (one of the oldest in Paris).

        7 Replies
        1. re: lexpatti
          ChefJune May 11, 2007 07:36 AM

          Did you have the Brioche at Cafe Mouffetard? it's the best I've ever experienced.

          1. re: ChefJune
            l
            lexpatti May 11, 2007 09:42 AM

            We didn't dine at Cafe Mouffetard, we did the market along rue mouffetard - loved it. We had freshed shucked oysters along there - I was in heaven!!! We had lunch at another place there in the Latin Quarters that we loved - Le Pre' Verre on rue Thenard.

            1. re: lexpatti
              d
              Dodo May 11, 2007 10:04 AM

              Le Bistrot du Dôme, Rue Delambre, 14tharr., M°: Vavin, right behind Le Dôme (on Blvd. Montparnasse) open on Sunday won't let you down either. Mainly seafood.
              Very lively area with all the large brasseries on the boulevard. Perfect for people watching.

              PS: Note: Le Pré Verre is closed Sun+Mon!

              http://www.lepreverre.com

              1. re: lexpatti
                ChefJune May 11, 2007 11:06 AM

                Cafe Mouffetard is not a place to dine... it's more of a bar that serves breakfast. But they make their own brioche, croissants and pain complet, and all are just about the best you could possibly hope to find anywhere.

                Oh my goodness! You could eat for days at the stalls on the rue Mouffetard, as well as with the vendors in the market!

                1. re: ChefJune
                  l
                  lexpatti May 11, 2007 02:08 PM

                  I must have missed it, sounds wonderful. We'll have to hit it next time. Paris has just become our annual getaway. :-) Fabulous. We did hit this wonderful bakery (I know there's a milllion) that was close to the Luxemburge Garden's - took it over to the gardens and enjoyed our breakfast for a couple hours in the sun. Who lives like this???

                  1. re: lexpatti
                    Splendid Wine Snob May 23, 2007 09:47 AM

                    I wonder if the bakery you are talking about is Mulot?? INCREDIBLE. But believe it or not, out of all the pastries and desserts I tried in Paris (and there were many), they still did not compare to the genius of Martial Ribreau at Celestin in Toronto, Canada.

                    And yes, the market on Moufftard was the best.

                    1. re: Splendid Wine Snob
                      l
                      lexpatti May 23, 2007 07:37 PM

                      I think that was it, you could smell it from a few blocks away. This weekend I'm going to attempt to make a little pastry I fell in love with over there every morning - Chouquettes. mmmmm, I miss Paris.

          2. erica May 9, 2007 11:42 AM

            Le Reminet, near the Seine in the 5th is open Sundays and has good food in a pretty casual setting.

            1. f
              faijay May 9, 2007 03:45 AM

              Probably within walking distance is L'Ardoise in the 1st arr. It is very busy and I like the food. Make a reservation. Another great Parisian place open on Sunday is the bistrot Les Charpentiers in the 6th. Be careful not to walk into the horrible Italian restaurant next door. I made that mistake and had the worst meal I have ever had in Paris and one of the top ten worst meals of my life.

              2 Replies
              1. re: faijay
                d
                Dodo May 9, 2007 03:56 AM

                Le Dauphin, 167, Rue Saint-Honoré, 1st arr. M° Palais Royal.
                Depending on where you'll stay in the 8th arr., you can even walk there. Wonderful bistrot (brasserie-style) with Southwestern food at very reasonable prices. count with 30-40€. In case you decide for it, don't miss the gardens of the Palais Royal for a walk away from the traffic.

                Or then, as suggested, L'Ardoise.

                1. re: faijay
                  s
                  Sweetlou May 19, 2007 03:04 PM

                  I completely agree with L'ardoise. We were there in early April and had dinner on Sunday night. Our waitress was the most amazing! The restaurant was full and she was the only one there because the other server was running late. If they have it, the roasted chicken from Bresse is amazing as are the escargot. Try to go on the later side so you don't end up eating with the American tourists.

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