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Jan 23, 2008 06:40 PM

2nd trip to suggestions!

I am thrilled to be going to Paris for a week this June. I was also in Paris this past fall and, of course, fell in love with the wonderful city....and its restaurants! I relied heavily on Chowhound for my last trip and was not steered wrong.

As I have been before, I can refine my questions. Our most memorable meal was Le Comptoir du Relais...the food was amazing. I would love to hear of any other suggestions that would be as good as (or better) than Le Comptoir, in a similar price range.

We have also been to Aux Lyonnais. We ordered from the price fix menu and I found the food to be underwhelming. I don't know that I would return there. Would there be anything to recommend in its place, like Les Bouquinistes?

We went to Chez Denise and found the atmosphere and food to be very enjoyable. If there are other options that would be as much fun as Chez Denise, I would love to hear about them.

We also enjoyed Le Petit Pontoise, Louis Vins, and Les Fontaines des Mars. As you can see, we tend to favour the bistro atmosphere and places that do not break the bank. I would be very happy to return to almost every place I have been before, but that would be boring! I hope that the information I provided will help Chowhounders with their recommendations....thank you!

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  1. On a trip last year, we had a wonderful dinner on Saturday night at Au Fil de Saisons, a place I couldn't resist trying after reading about it on Chez Christine's blog (link below). This restaurant is definitely on my list of places to recommend and to revisit. The amuse was a tiny cup of asparagus soup. For starters, I had the house foie gras - a large slice served with a sprinkling of pepper and sea salt and a few divinely supple dried apricots. My friend had the scallops, which were outstanding. My main, the house special duck cooked for 7 hours, with foie gras melting on top of it, was wonderful. My companion had the duck breast with chestnuts and grapes, and it too was fabulous. For dessert, I had the palette of ice creams. All five were delicious, but I was too full to eat more than a few bites of each. My friend had a millefeuille with rhubarb and kiwi which I thought sounded odd, but it was scrumptious. We shared a bottle of 2005 Chateau des Hautes Ribes Vacqueryas, a very smoky red wine that paired nicely with our duck. The tab for dinner was an even 90Euros for the two of us - - a great deal for the quality. This is a tiny place, so be sure to reserve.

    One of the nice restaurants in Paris where I've dined several times is L'Oulette, though we didn't make it there last trip. They are justly famous for their duck confit, and for their oxtails and foie gras wrapped in cabbage (so yummy), but everything there is wonderful. They have a menu of coffees and you can choose the one you want (hmmm Ethiopian tonight, or maybe Hawaiian?) They also have wonderful herbal teas/tisanes. If you don't want dessert, you can have a flight of Armagnac, and they bring you a plate of mignardises anyhow (chocolates and sugared almonds). Depending where you are staying, the main shortcoming is the location - - the restaurant is in Bercy, near the soccer arena, which is off the beaten path. It's a short walk from the Metro station to the restaurant, but it can be a long Metro or taxi ride depending on your point of origin. This is also a good value for the quality - dinner for two would probably be in the range of 150 Euros.

    1. There is a thread that contains many comments about Les Bouquinistes:

      You should find it very informative. IMO if you are looking for something in the price range of LB, you can do better. Le W has a michelin star and excellent food in a nice setting, as just one example. Also, there are many restaurants with food and ambience to equal LB that are much less expensive. Ze Kitchen Galerie is one, as discussed on the other thread, and I would also highly recommend Le Dome du Marais, which not only has excellent food, but has one of the most beautiful dining rooms around. L'Os a Moelle has a simpler bistro atmosphere but with wonderful creative food, and the 5 course prix fixe is 36 euros.

      1. If you've enjoyed Le Comptoir du relais, I can recommend you Le Troquet rue Francois Bonvin 75015, a truly excellent place, my favourite in Paris. Always packed.
        Le Troquet is where the 3 star chefs love to go when they dine out... it's bistrot atmosphere with a prix fixe menu at no more than 30 euro or gastronomic one at 45 euro with the chef preparing you surprise dishes.
        I remember dining there and see the whole George V brigade with the Gilles Legendre coming there for dinner !
        I go there once a month and all people I've brought to this place do come back often !

        L'ami Jean is a good bet as well.

        You should try out L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon, not really a bistrot but food is truly excellent and does not have to be expensive. The caille and the puree are simply the best !

        Le Dauphin opposite Comedie Francaise is also a favourite for many chefs. The chef Didier Oudil used to run a 2 Michelin star in Biarritz and opened this brasserie style restaurant a few years ago. It's still very popular and good with reasonable price.

        One very simple but truly good brasserie is the Brasserie de l'Ile St Louis opposite to the Bertillon Sorbets. It's 110% French, very traditional atmosphere with waiters coming out from an Audiard movie, the crowd is a mix of locals, some of them living on the island, and tourists... But it's not at all a tourist trap.
        We generally eat there the jarret marmelade (pork jarret with apple marmelade, ligthter meal than it seems) with their beer which is truly excellent !

        1. Petit Troquet, Florimonds, Le Veiux Bistro, Au Bon Acceiul, Chez Jean Ami, Cafe Constant