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New Yorker living in Paris for 8 months: Where to eat in the 6th?

Hello everyone!

I am a New York City gal living in Paris for 8 months to attend Le Cordon Bleu. I live in the 6th arrondissement and am looking for suggestions for great but not expensive food in the area. I live on Rue de Rennes and have heard a lot about many bistros (Christophe, L'Ami Jean, Le Nemrod) and would love some more suggestions. Specifcally would like to know more French resto's as well as Indian or any other ethnic foods in the area. (I know there are lots in Belleville, but any in the 6th?). I welcome lunch and dinner options! Breakfast is easier since I will probably eat at home or pop into a cafe for a croissant.

I will of course be taking the metro or walking to other areas of Paris during my stay here but am taking it one arrondissement at a time, starting with the 6th since it's where I live.

I've found rue du Buci and love drinking wine there but not so much the food (for dinner, at least).

I hope this wasn't too broad but I am a food lover so welcome any suggestions!

Merci!

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  1. There's always le Comptoir de l'Odéon, which has the advantage of serving quality brasserie throughout the day (their gastronomic nights are reserved way in advance so your best shot is to show up and hope for last minute cancellations or sit on the terrace when the weather is hostile and nobody wants to).

    I like Fish on rue de Seine a lot, for excellent wines and simple fresh food well made. I also like their sandwich joint across the street, the original Cosi. You should not miss Christian Constrant the patissier on rue d'Assas@Fleurus. And there's Gérard Mulot of course, and Patrick Roger not far. For great basque charcuteries and duck products of all sorts, think of Oteiza on bd Saint Michel, next to Boulinier. Poulidor was just mentioned in a recent thread for cheap eats, also Perraudin, and l'Ami Paul. There's Giraudet's soup and quenelle bar, across the street from Marché Saint Germain, it's a good address. The Italian wine bar inside the market is also good.

    Ethnic in Paris is likely to disapoint, especially in that neighborhood. One very decent Chinese is Lao Tseu on bd Saint Germain@Bd Raspail. There's a renowned (by Paris standards) Indian at the end of rue de Seine, but I can't say I was too impressed (haven't been in years, though). For quality fish in a private club setting at agressive prices, there is le 21 rue Mazarine.

    Also, someone told me Helene Darroze started a "recession special" prixfixe lunch at 25€. Next door, le Paris in the hotel Lutetia has a very good value lunch deal where you can have anything in the menu (two course+dessert) with beverage (wine, water, coffee) for 60e.

    Joséphine chez Dumonet is a very generous, very old style French bistrot. It looks expensive when you look at the menu but not when you see what they bring you. They also serve baguette from the bakery next door (bd Montparnasse@Cherche-midi) that is pretty awesome. You can see pictures of both there: http://picasaweb.google.fr/ZeJulot/Jo... and if you further browse my gallery you'll also see pictures of some other places I just listed.

    La Rotonde is the best brasserie in town. It's a brasserie, so sometimes it's only pretty good, but very often, it is actually excellent. Of course across the bd Montparnasse, la Coupole is also always worth a visit, if not for the food in particular.

    If you feel like getting one pound of pasta with two pounds of cream, or a pizza thick like a bread, head to Padova on bd du Montparnasse. For upscale brasserie, there's also la Closerie des Lilas.

    4 Replies
    1. re: souphie

      There is also Poilane bakery, which imo has the best croissants and chaussons aux pommes. And next door is Cuisine de Bar, with a 14 euro lunch formule and fancy, delicious tartines. Here are some pics on my blog...

      http://annmah.net/2009/03/03/dining-o...

      1. re: Cookingthebooks

        What type of camera do you use to take pictures in restaurants? I don't want to be disruptive to other diners, but I"m going to Alinea in Chicago in two weeks, o ya in Boston in April and Paris for a week in May and would like to take picrues. I have a DSLR, point and shoot and iPhone. I'd ideally like to take the DSLR with me so that I can adjust the exposure time, etc and not have to use a flash but its kind of large. In all my dining experience, I've never seen other people taking pictures. What do you guys use?

        1. re: BeanTownGolfer

          I use a DSLR at night and an SLR during the day. I don't think it makes other diners uncomfortable unless I am uncomfortable myself. Sometimes I even use a mini-tripod on the table. I never use flash not so much because of the other diners (well, that too) but because I don't like the result. My starting point is that a bad picture is not useful to anyone. This is why I use the DSLR less and take less and less pictures at night. Contact me at zejulot@gmail.com if you want to discuss it more as I am not sure that this is on topic.

          1. re: souphie

            Souphie! I was hoping you would reply as I've been searching through the boards and noticed you were quite the expert.

            Re: photography in restaurants - before coming to Paris, I worked at an on-line food magazine. We used to do a lot of tastings at night (of course these were formally set up with the chef) and found that a tripod and DSLR were the best BUT it does distract diners if the resto is in service. For me, I use a Canon Power Shot SD 1000, in macro mode. You can see some of the pics on my blog www.gastrogirls.com. Of course, the ones taken in good light come out great, the ones in bad light aren't good at all. Cheers and thanks for all the suggestions! xo

    2. L'espadon bleu for excellent seafood: http://lespadonbleu.abemadi.com/fr/r/...
      Bistrot d'en face

      I hope Souphie will let me know what she thinks of these two. It's been more than a year since I've been to either.

      1. You must try Chez Maitre Paul, 01 43 54 74 59, 12 rue Monsieur-le-Prince, right in the 6th. Ah, what the French can do with even a simple chicken! My favorite chicken dish of all time is the poulet gratinee here: farm chicken gratineed with rich Comte cow’s milk. Magnifique! And try starting with the Montbeliard sausage with warm potatoes. Also well worth your consideration: salade comtoise (endive, cheese, ham and walnuts), poulet au vin jaune (chicken in white wine), poulet aux morrilles (chicken with morel mushrooms in cream sauce). 30 euros for entree, plat and dessert!

        3 Replies
        1. re: globalgourmet

          Here's an enthusiastic second for Chez Maitre Paul. That sausage and potatoes dish is the stuff dreams are made of!

          Bastide d'Odeon is above average for Provencal fare, and has a nice ambiance.

          1. re: ChefJune

            I had a pretty sad meal Chez Maître Paul today. It started as a meeting of fat food lovers between me, the other client in there, and the boss. Then the other client left and I was alone in the room, with a perfectly useless waiter. A buddy of the boss, a baker, came late to have lunch with him, so that made the situation slightly less sad.

            From the menu, from the setting, from what the boss says, it's the kind of place I'd love to love. But that first meal there unfortunately did not show much to remember, though it was ny no mean unpleasant.

            The best part was probably the snail "ragout" with many vegetables and some tired creamy sauce pretending to be "au bleu de Jex", and that may be true, but then, it spent too much time on the stove, and it was too thick and tasteless.

            Still, there was something surprisingly "nouvelle cuisine" about that course, whereas the next, chicken gratinée, was kind of pathetic if, there again, not bad -- it's an overcooked supreme, some mushrooms, a creamy sauce that looked pretty much the same, and some Comté on top. Also some bad rice on the side, obviously cooked too long ago and refrigerated in between.

            It ended with a decent "croustillant de pommes", with a nice, if banal, texture and temperature play. I realised that conditions were less than ideal, but that place gave the feeling that it was dying.

            I put some pictures for you there: http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/ZeJulot...

            1. re: souphie

              I have had a much worse experience at Chez Maitre Paul...I've eaten at Chez Maitre Paul twice: once in about 1999 and then again a couple of years ago. What a dramatic change, and not for the better! On the formule menu, dishes were unidentifiable "stews," with little meat or fish and lots of onions. We were moved from the table we had reserved to make way for another party and moved to the (hot!) back room. Service was chilly, unlike our previous experiences eating out in Paris (and I speak French), and we were surrounded by Americans. Unfortunately, my husband was violently ill several hours after our meal (and I have read on this board about similar experiences there), and we had to extend our stay because he could not even think of getting on a plane. The silver lining was a couple of extra days in Paris, but we would NOT ever make a repeat visit to this place!

        2. Hey there, I am a student from Los Angeles who has lived in Paris's 6th since August. I think I can definitely be of service to you. I should note that I generally go over my budget for food because I like good food.

          Right now my favorite is Le Petit Pontoise. It is actually in the 5th but only around a 20 minute walk from where you live and between Boulevard Saint Germain and the Seine. Nice atmosphere, the food is excellent, and they have great wine (They have a great Chateauneuf du Pape though a little cher). Starters are between 10-15 euros, main dishes are between 20-28 euros, desserts around 8 euros. I have had a lot of things on the menu and have taken many people there it is a must.

          Another favorite of mine is Au Bon Saint Pourcain. It is on a tiny street near saint sulpice. They bring you a glass of their house wine when you sit down. They have a single board that hangs from the wall as the menu. All main dishes are 20 euros and starters and desserts very. It is a classic french cuisine restaurant with nothing fancy. Very small only about 8 tables with a max of about 20 people I would say. Always the same woman and man serving. A great place.

          Rue de Buci is amazing and fun to walk down. At the begining or end of rue de buci but near boulevard saint germain is an italian restaurant Del Papa. The prices are good and the food is great. It is simple and easy and you can always count on it for good food. I have probably visited here most frequently. There is one server who is an *sshole if your french isn't that great, but he has improved since my first visit.

          Right off Rue de Buci on Rue de Seine is Cosi Cafe which has amazing sandwiches. Really great variety and all delicious.

          Also great Paninis at Pane e Vino Right near the corner of rue de Buci and Rue de Seine. They also have really fresh pastas you can buy to cook and other Italian goodies.

          Carton on Rue de Buci has the best pastries I think in Paris (Except for LaDuree macarons which are terribly perfect).

          Eric Kayser on rue de l'Ancienne Comedie again next to rue de buci has the best baguettes. Their baguette de malsherbes tends to be always hot and amazing.

          For some cheese with the best baguette head over to Fromagerie 31 on the lower side of rue de seine (below rue de Buci). They have an amazing selection and the staff is very helpful.

          I know I did not really respond to your topic but thought I would give you some tips for the area. Anytime you want to do a foodie night or bring me food that you made at school I can be made available. If you have any questions you can run them by me.

          1. One more suggestion is Les Midi-Vins, 83, rue de Cherche Midi
            Owned by Christelle, former owner of Dix Vins near Montparnasse.
            I haven't been there in the past year or so, but their menu is 24E, I believe.
            Outstanding selection of regional wines.