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Oct 21, 2009 10:16 AM

Paris - New Year's Eve and New Year's Day

We will be in Paris from the 29th to the 4th, staying in an apartment in the Marais. Based on advice I have read on this board, we are going to avoid going out for dinner on New Year's but will cook at the apartment and wander up to the Champs Elysee after dinner. We would like to have a nice lunch that day - is that possible or will most places be shut down in preparation for the evening? Also, what about New Year's Day? Will many places be closed? Are there any recommendations for either lunch or dinner on New Year's? Thanks!

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  1. Funny you should ask. My Sunday Summary discussed the issue and the possibilities.
    New Year's eve I avoid because my already fading hearing is not helped by cherry bombs thrown in the subway entrances. We do oysters, foie gras, herring, caviar etc from the usual suspects.
    New Year's Eve lunch is iffy; often places are preparing for the biggest profit day of the year (damn Socialists) and have pared down menus or none at all; so you must call and ask specifically.
    New Year's Day, they're recovering and have some of the same problems.
    In my experience, for both lunches, mid-range, non-blowout places keep on trucking but I never get my hopes very high.
    And if the truth be told, I fall back on brasseries I would never be caught alive or dead in these days. But home is where they have to take you in, right? And oyster shuckers are in full flower on NY Day, at least in my nabe.
    Good luck, report back and enjoy! It's a great time, even with the cherry bombs.

    9 Replies
    1. re: John Talbott

      I agree with staying home new years eve, big time.
      For new year eve lunch, why not a simple sandwich lunch at your neighborhood delicatessen Finkelsztajn on rue des rosiers, in preparation to "vous empiffrer grave" (my fave French adolescent slang meaning pig-out) later?
      If you arrive on the 29th, you can already go to your local poissonnerie and order oysters and other sea goodies for new years eve. You can ask them to open the oysters, for a little fee, and have them prepare the seafood platter of your choosing, for a fraction of the cost in restaurants.
      Then put on a Maria Callas cd and have a bottle of bubblies ready for the countdown…
      Am no good re new year day lunch as mine is usually a wonton soup at Maramar, very good for food hangover and hangover-hangover.

      1. re: Parigi

        I too will be in Paris from the 28th to the 4th. We are staying in an apartment on Rue de l'Universite. We had planned to eat in on NYE and hit the streets afterwards. Are there any particular markets/shops in the area you could recommend for us to get some gorgeous local foods to have a NYE feast?

        1. re: eks81

          Markets near rue de l'Université…
          The rue Cler market is mad fun right before xmas.
          There is also the rue de Buci market, which is more "chic", more expensive, more for people-watching.

          1. re: eks81

            Rue de l'Universite is quite a long street, if you are at the eastern end then head to "La Grand Epicerie" at "Le Bon Marche", the best food hall in Paris, and it will be wonderful at Christmas with lots of dried and crystalised fruits, mountains of turkish delight plus all the fresh food you will need. It is probably the biggest selection of quality food under one roof in Paris.

            If you walk to it along rue du Bac to get there you pass a great fish-shop (their hand carved smoked salmon is very good) and are close to one of the better cheese shops in Paris (Barthememy - although that may be closed). This is a very well heeled area so prices are not low, but the quality is very high.

            You are also not far from a good wine shop called "Dernier Gout", they stock some very good champagne from smaller producers like "Egly-Ouriet" which is far better than much of what is produced by the big multi-national champagne houses.

          2. re: Parigi

            Any recommendations for local markets/shops in the Marais? We are staying on Rue de Sevigne.

            1. re: kfoster21

              Remember markets are only on specific days so it depends when you are there and when the holidays are. The best for the Marais is the Bastille market which is on Thursday and Sunday morning so Thursday AM on the 31st may work.

              Here is the official guide to Paris markets:

          3. re: John Talbott

            Thanks, John. I will check out the list on your site. Of the brasseries that you would normally not be caught dead in, are any slightly less fatal?

            1. re: kfoster21

              Short answer - no.
              Long answer - Brasserie Lorraine, Marty's & Jenny.

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