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Aug 23, 2009 03:05 PM

One lunch in Paris, where should we go......

Visiting my son in London and taking the Eurostar into Paris for one night. Staying at the Hotel Raphael and having dinner there with clients on the 8th of September. Where in this area would you suggest for a great lunch and great bottle (or more!) of wine?

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  1. Best and most memorable lunch I have had in Paris is on the Patio at the Ritz. Was there with DW and daughter, a couple of tables away was Pierce Broslin (sp) wife, nanny and daughter. A few arab shieks and other assorted important looking folks. Food, service and wine was fantastic, daughter is still talking about it.

    1. The Raphael is magic and tho technically in the 16th it tightly borders the 8th and I might suggest Table Robuchon or L'Arome....enjoyed them both for dinner and have seen good things on this board re their lunch service And please have a nightcap on the roof terrace at the Raphael

      1 Reply
      1. re: capeanne

        Thanks for your suggestions and I believe we are dining on the roof terrace. I can't wait!

      2. I would do Le Cinq. Although I haven't been there before, I am SO enamored of the comments in this forum on their prix fixe lunch menu for 85 euros. I know that's where I'd head.

        1. All the names mentioned are just fine, but I would head over to the Bois de Boulogne and try either La Grande Cascade (79E lunch), a one star, or Pre Catelan (85E lunch), a three star. Both are a short taxi ride away.

          1. If you want memorable, then certainly head for these places mentioned here, as well as the Fumoir (near Louvre).

            But if you want real food, unpretentious atmosphere and a true Parisian experience head for Les Pipos in Latin Quarter. The best restaurants in Paris are those which never make it to the tourist guidebooks, thankfully. In my time of living in Paris I don't think I've ever met anyone who had eaten at the Ritz or had a lunch anywhere for 75 euros, this is mainly for the tourists I'd say.

            7 Replies
            1. re: Lost Traveller

              "The best restaurants in Paris are those which never make it to the tourist guidebooks" Isn't that the reason we contribute too, and ask advice of this sight. We don't simply follow Foders or Lonely Planet.

              You may not met Parisians who pay €75 for lunch but lots of them exist, these restaurants have more than their share of business people and the wealthy locals. I would say that €75 for lunch (including wine) is fairly average for good//great food in Paris. Even mid level restaurants will be pushing up to this level with wine, water and coffee.

              1. re: PhilD

                This may well be true, but if we are honest, 75 euros for a lunch (per person, right?) is way beyond most ordinary people's budget. Sorry, there is just no way around that. If you are talking about 75 for two people, that's a different story. Still, it would be a lunch that you have as a special treat not something to do as a matter of course.

                For best lunches off the tourist trail, I'd simply get out of central Paris, or make sure I'm at least 2-3 metro stops away from any major attraction. Once in such an area, just go to a local bistro that's full of locals. A rule I'd follow in any major city, to be honest.

                1. re: Lost Traveller

                  I actually see it the other way around: I think it is the 30/50 pp you'll pay for lunch in any bistrot in Paris that are outrageous and out of most people's ordinary budget. When places like Lasserre or le Cinq or Ledoyen offer you the best of culinary skills, ingredients and culture, for less than 100eur pp, the simple economic fact is that it is a wonderful deal. Dozens of qualified peope work hard to put together those meals. Pay almost half of that for something fixed by an illegal worker in a backroom kitchen with (French) supermarket ingredients doesn't really make sense to me. Not that I don't like les Pipos. It was a splurge place as student.

                  1. re: souphie

                    Hey, even a current "Pipo" might have trouble with that 18E lunch prix-fixe. I agree with you about the lunch menus at the starred restaurants; no way they make a profit charging under 100E per person. A great relative value! I wish SF and NYC would emulate these offerings.

                    1. re: souphie

                      I totally agree with what you are saying in terms of quality, chefs etc. However, I am also saying that 75/85 euros is beyond most people's budget in this day and age. My entire food budget for two people is 150 euros per week! And we are extravagant in comparison to our friends. A meal out for 2 people that is the cost of my weekly food budget is something I'd do once a year, not as a matter of course.

                      1. re: Lost Traveller

                        I agree it is expensive, I also agree that many can't afford it. But isn't that simply a fact of life and to pretend you can eat great food in Paris on a low budget is misleading?

                        Paris is a very expensive city and to experience really good food there is going to be expensive. I can't afford to eat lunch at these prices everyday, but I do know that if I want to experience really good cooking with good ingredients then this is the sort of price I will need to pay (and yes it is €75 a head).

                        On my next visit I will enjoy a lot of meals that cost less than this, but I will also know the limitations of the meals. The OP asked for the "one lunch in Paris", if they had specified a budget the answer would be different, but they didn't.

                        1. re: Lost Traveller

                          Then you probably also agree that 50e for a bistrot lunch is crazy as well if your food budget is 150e/week. I would argue it's even crazier as you're paying a lot for an experience that is not extraordinary.