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Jul 30, 2009 11:30 PM

A Week in Paris - Restaurant Recommendations


We are going to spend a week in Paris towards the end of August (which unfortunately means a lot of places will be closed) and would like to go to the following places for dinner:

Chez Dumonet - Josephine
Le Comptoir du Relais
Les Cocottes
Chez L'Ami Jean
Ze Kitchen Galerie
Le Chateaubriand
Chez Michel
La Rotonde

(1) Should we be going to any of these places for lunch instead?
(2) Should we substitute any of the places above with one of the following?

Le Train Bleu
Chez Janou
Marius et Janette
Le Dome

Thanks in advance for everyone's invaluable feedback!

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  1. Hi, Have you checked open/close dates for these? A number of people have generously compiled lists of various Paris restaurant availabilities in August. Otherwise, Ze Kitchen Galerie might be more fun for lunch. Le Chateaubriand just might be slightly disappointing, Great atmosphere, food inconsistent. Don't miss Chez Michel. Le Train Bleu is amusing for lunch: mostly for the setting. Frenchie is a difficult table to get, they advise booking three weeks in advance. I might substitute Benoit for either La Rotonde or Le Compoir, (lunch or dinner). Enjoy!

    8 Replies
    1. re: pkyeater

      Thanks for the feedback! All the restaurants above are open while we're in August (i.e. not necessarily the whole month, but definitely on the days we're there) so we should be okay.

      Any chance you could elaborate why Ze Kitchen Galerie might be better for lunch?

      Also, I understand Le Chateaubriand has a five course menu for 45E per person, which seems like a decent value. Is the food really that inconsistent?

      Finally, I have also heard great things about Frenchie and would like to try it out, but is it true they do not have air conditioning?

      Thanks for your suggestion re: substituting Benoit.

      1. re: hong_kong_foodie

        Hi and you're welcome. I'm not sure why I said ZKG for lunch, I thought it would be more people-y and fun, but on second thought, at the end of August it probably wouldn't be. It's true, Le Chateaubriand is good value and still very much a neighborhood place. I'm not surprised to hear about Frenchie's lack of "clime" as many restos here do not have ac. Do they have tables outside? If so, that's the solution.

        1. re: pkyeater

          Makes sense, thanks again.

          Do any of these restaurants in my original post have a dress code? What is inappropriate to wear? What should we wear as men and women?

          1. re: hong_kong_foodie

            Ze Kitchen: business casual, at most
            L'Ami Jean: none that I could discern
            Frenchie: fairly casual when we were there for dinner in July

            1. re: hong_kong_foodie

              I agree with John Talbott re Le Train Bleu and food, but it's not terrible. The place is just from such another world. Maybe just a drink? Also, I think he's (gender presumption?) right about Le Dome. As far as dress code, decent jeans and a good shirt for men, and elegant jeans and a chic top for women would be fine for pretty much anywhere. Especially in summer. Overdressed will scream 'tourist.' Better book that table at Frenchie fast!

              1. re: pkyeater

                I just realized that Frenchie is closed until Aug 15th. If I call them early on the day they re-open, do you think I will be able to get a table, let's say, for a few days later? What if it's a Friday or Saturday? I just don't want to get my hopes up.

                1. re: hong_kong_foodie

                  Frenchie was not completely full when we went on a Thursday night. There were still 2 tables free all night -- with no turn over of tables.

                  1. re: hong_kong_foodie

                    I read eleswhere that Frenchie is closed till August 25 or 26?

        2. All look pretty good:
          I happen to favor ZKG, Frenchie and Chez Michel at this moment
          OK about Chez Dumonet - Josephine, Le Comptoir du Relais & Les Cocottes
          and am deadset against Le Train Bleu (great setting, poor food), Benoit (ditto plus overpriced) and Le Dome (all of the above plus the Bistro du Dome is so much more fun).
          as for:
          (1) Should we be going to any of these places for lunch instead?
          Sure, why not, for instance, ZKG is 3 times more expensive at night

          10 Replies
          1. re: John Talbott

            Thanks for the input. Is ZKG really that much more expensive at night? I'm looking at the menu on their website, and it says 35 euros for essentially a three course meal.

            Would you suggest Frenchie for lunch or dinner? Also, and I'm sorry if I've asked this before but it's important to us, does Frenchie have air conditioning? Thanks again.

            1. re: hong_kong_foodie

              The reason why I know there's a big difference in price at ZKG is that we were there for lunch just after a power outage on the block and they only had the evening before's menus; they made a point of warning us not to worry about the difference; the lunch prices would be in effect. Since we normally have lunch there, I was impressed by the difference.

              As for Frenchie I've also only been for lunch, both times it was not hot enough to think about A/C so I have no idea.

              1. re: John Talbott

                Do you mind sharing how much on avg one would spend on a 3 course meal without alcohol for lunch at ZKG? Thanks.

                1. re: hong_kong_foodie

                  The prices are posted on the web page.

                  Click 'Venue', then 'Flavours, then 'Menu'. Starter, main and dessert is some €35.
                  As far as I understand, a glass of wine and coffee are included.

                  1. re: hong_kong_foodie

                    ZKG doesn't have a set menu in the evening, it is very expensive for what it is. I understand the lunch menu is a bargain in comparison. i was underwhelmed by ZKG, but i am used to fusion food and Asian influences thus found it pedestrian compared to similar in other cities.

                2. re: hong_kong_foodie

                  I went to Frenchie last week and it was wonderful, but I don't think that it has air conditioning.

                  1. re: Nancy S.

                    Our recollection (mid-July) was that there definitely was air conditioning at Frenchie. My wife insists that she was sitting directly under the AC vent.

                    Separately, we are big fans of ZKG at lunch. GREAT menu, reasonably priced, superb service, wonderful location for leisurely walk post-prandium.

                    1. re: ricodanles

                      Thanks everyone. Based on all of your input, we have decided to:

                      (1) go to ZKG for lunch instead of dinner
                      (2) go to Frenchie for dinner if we can get a table--they are closed for the next few weeks so we'll try to give them a call the day they re-open and hope for the best
                      (3) avoid Le Train Bleu since many people (including a few friends off the CH boards) have advised against it

                      In general we plan to fill up at boulangeries and patisseries for breakfast and lunch (though we'll do lunch at ZKG on one day and La Table de Robuchon on another), and have a good sit-down meal at bistrots and brasseries for dinner. We are so excited!

                      1. re: hong_kong_foodie

                        Could someone elaborate on Frenchie?
                        What to order?
                        I do not know this Restaurant.
                        Many Thanks

                        1. re: erly

                          The decor is simple and casual. Not fancy at all. The crowd is young -- everybody but us took smoking breaks. The menu changes daily and there are two choices per course (set price).

              2. I noticed Chez Janou on your list- and i would totally reco it. We had a wonderful meal there in 2007. Great, authentic, and very reasonable prices- as we always travel on a budget. And in general, most places offer a prix fixe menu which allows you to eat lunch for a lower price than dinner. That is how we can afford to eat at those *great* places when we eat in Paris- we go for lunch!

                Enjoy your trip!