Help - Sunday dinner in Paris this weekend
Hi we're staying in the Marais and looking for a good, hearty dinner in warm surroundings. Does not have to be in Marais, and certainly not looking for something fancy --- but it is a friend's birthday, so a lovely place with great food and good atmosphere. Thanks.
Thanks to advice from this board, we enjoyed a warm welcome and a fine meal on a Sunday night at Parc aux Cerfs. The meal began with their house aperitif. I found it very sweet, and later wished that I'd saved it for my cheese course. 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. 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 just ok. Dessert was an assortment of three cheeses, all excellent. With a bottle of red wine (not that memorable), the tab came to 123 Euros.
Les Fontaines des Mars (129 Rue St. Dominique, 7th, very close to Eiffel Tower) has a very convivial atmosphere and good food, and prices are reasonable. I think it would be a nice choice for first-time visitors to Paris, if that is the case here. And, they are open Sunday!
I would second that wholeheartedly. Also l'Auberge Bressane in the 7th, don't miss the crepes suzettes for dessert. Le Bistrot d'a Coté in the 17t or in Neuilly is also open on sunday, very recommended. Le Dauphin near les Halles. Upper scale sunday opportunities include Senderens and Drouant (by Westermann). (even upper: Gagnaire and the restaurants in the bois de boulogne, Grande Cascade and Pré-Catelan) Sunday is not easy in Paris.
Breizh café for crepes is also open, as is the 404 for couscous.
Chez Christophe in the 5th on the place de la montagne sainte Genevière, highly praised for simple bistronomique. La rotisserie du beaujolais for great roast lamb or chicken (call in advance so they start roasting for you).
I definitely do second Le Parc aux Cerfs (M°: Vavin). Wonderful cozy bistrot at reasonable prices. I've never been disappointed there. Very nice wine list as well.
Regarding La Fontaine de Mars, I find it somewhat touristy, rather heavy food and no fixed price menus. Too expensive for what you get. My latest experience there in Decezmber was pretty much so-so. Very dried out confit de canard, oily pommes lyonnaises. I won't return.
In the 7th arr., I definitely do prefer Pasco. Wonderful Mediterranean food.
Other than that, there is always La Rotonde, right around the corner from Le Parc aux Cerfs on Blvd. Montparnasse.
I was at the Fontaine de Mars last week, and it was quite good. They did a very nice job on the enlargement/renovation. Although maybe I got good treatment as a regular whom Mme Boudon greets very warmly, which the rest of the staff notices. The menu is a bit short but everything was very good and served straight from the stove. Also, I was there for lunch, when there are fewer tourists and service is a bit more efficient since folks aren't expecting to hang out there for hours.