New Years Eve in Paris
Good Afternoon - I will be traveling in Paris for three days, with my trip culminating on New Years Day. In short, I know many on this board do not recommend eating dinner out in the city on New Year's Eve..but lets be honest..no one wants to sit in the hotel room eating market items. Any reasonable suggestions for a nice, affordable dinner for New Year's Eve, and if so, do you recommend making reservations in advance? Thanks in advance.
We were in Paris last year for Christmas and had xmas eve dinner at this great little place called Le Reminet. It is located right near the Notre Dame. Everything about it was perfect. When the clock struck 12 we could hear the bells.. it was just so charming. I recommend making reservations! Have Fun!
In 2001, we were in Paris at New Year's. We had no dinner reservations, and my husband asked me --- the Francophone --- to obtain a table for four. We'd been walking by all these places posting their "reveillon" menus (long and elaborate) and prices (high --- and today it would be worse with the dollar/euro collision!). I had no interest in either the artifical hoopla or the extravagance. But I tried. I called about 25 places --- no soap. I'm sure they'd been booked since October at the latest. As it turned out, my husband developed a stomach bug and was down for the count. So my son and his friend (both early 20s) and I headed forth in search of dinner and a bit of a celebration. We found it in spades at a family-run crepe place in the rue Mouffetard area, behind the Pantheon. We were welcomed like long lost cousins and loved our simple meal of salads (superb, of course) and various kinds of crepes --- seafood, etc. Dessert crepes were the crowning glory. We ordered champagne and shared it as others shared theirs --- and also shared New Year's kisses and dancing with this wonderful family. This could not have been a simpler or better way to ring in the New Year. Afterward, we walked down to the Seine, where complete bedlam was king. Non-stop car horns, screaming, shouting, blaring French rock music, a mob-scene that would make Times Square look tame. We headed as quickly as possible in the opposite direction. Please take my advice and stay away from all that and find a family cafe or restaurant where you will enjoy the happiest of happy new years!
I think if you eat out just about anywhere other than a greek sandwich place you will need a reservation. Many, probably most, places will only have the reveillion menu on NYE and it will be way high priced. I feel comfortable in saying this since I spent the last 2 NYE in France (Paris once, Lembach Alsace the other) and did quite a bit of research on what places were open and what they were serving on NYE.
If you insist on going to a restaurant I say go to a good place, 1 star or better. You will get robbed but I would feel better about overpaying at a place that is good than overpaying for a mediocre dinner. Forget about walking up on NYE, you will not find an open spot without a reservation. And for both the NYE dinners I had to provide and advance deposit of 100e or so. This year NYE falls on a Monday, a day when many restaurants in Paris are closed anyway. This probably makes having a reservation all the more important.
I would say go somewhere good for lunch then later that night take a walk up the Champs and maybe over to the Trocadero. Those areas will be really bustling with activity.