Paris, Burgundy and Champagne - Preliminary food itinerary - Advise requested!
My husband and I are visiting Paris, Burgundy and Champagne in the early spring and based on the help of many of your posts, I have put together the following preliminary food itinerary for us. For point of reference, we live in NYC and enjoy foods that range from the high end to the great but inexpensive sandwich shop. We are looking for a mix of food experiences in France, however, we do not eat pork, organ meats or poultry but love all seafood and other meat (i.e., if cote de boeuf is on the menu we will likely order it), so pre-set menus without any flexibility/choice generally do not work for us. Also, trying not to cram in 2 huge meals in one day and trying to hit a range of price points. Here goes....looking forward to any advise, comment or critique...please let me know what I'm missing!
Paris (staying in the 6th for 3 nights and in the 8th the following weekend):
Fri Breakfast/Lunch (after redeye from NY) - grab and go crepes/baguettes/cheeses/etc.
Fri Dinner - Chez L'Ami Jean
Sat Lunch - Le Cinq
Sat Dinner - Garnier for oysters/raw bar
Sun Lunch - Saint Germain/Raspail/Bastille Market
Sun Dinner - La Cagouille
Sat Dinner - La Regalade St. Honore
Sun Lunch - L'Atelier de Joel Rubuchon
Sun Dinner - L'Ami Louis
Thinking maybe L'Ami Jean, Regalade St. Honore and L'Ami Louis are too similar.....
Burgundy (staying outside of Beaune for 2 nights and Chablis for 1 night)
Mon Lunch - open
Mon Dinner - Ma Cuisine (how far in advance should I try for a reservation?)
Tues Lunch - open
Tues Dinner - Hostellerie de Levernois
Wed Lunch - open
Wed Dinner in Chablis - Maybe Hostellerie des Clos but read many mixed reviews? Other suggestions?
Unsure about lunches in Burgundy and very open to suggestions; read about Olivier Leflaive wine lunch but while the wine sounds great, I'm hesitant about the food. Do any wineries do wine tastings with lunch?
Champagne (staying in Reims)
Thurs Lunch - Assiette Champenoise
Thurs Dinner - Brasserie Flo? Other ideas for a light dinner in Reims?
Fri Lunch in Epernay - hoping to grap some cheese and bread from a market? other light lunch ideas in Epernay for between visits to Champagne houses?
Fri Dinner - Le Parc at Les Crayeres
Thanks in advance!
"Burgundy (staying outside of Beaune for 2 nights and Chablis for 1 night)
Mon Lunch - open
Mon Dinner - Ma Cuisine (how far in advance should I try for a reservation?)"
1 week. 10 days to be safe.
Your choice for Burgundy - and elsewhere - is good. But you may want to bear in mind that Burgundy cuisine is quite rich. One good resto meal per day is quite enough. I know I can't possibly dine out twice a day in the kind good restos on your list. We did that once and simply did not enjoy it.
On warmer days I would have suggested a picnic...
Lastly, you realize that the distance between Chablis and Beaune is not great. If I were you, I would keep just one base - Beaune - instead of two, for logistical reasons and because I despise packing and unpacking.
Thanks for the quick reply. I was thinking that the extent of dining out may be too ambitious and I appreciate the advise and I am hoping to be able to find places to grab small bites (not necessarily sit down meals). I love the idea of picnics, although it may be questionable whether it will be warm enough (last week in march/first week in april). Do you have recommendations for places or markets to go in the Burgundy area or Champagne region for small bites (lunch or dinner) for those other meals?
As for the distance between Beaune and Chablis, I was thinking that by staying in Chablis it would break up the drive from Beaune to Reims, which I believe I looked up to be around 4 hours. We are not fully set on the night in Chablis though....
My favorite winery in Chablis is Domaine Laroche, and they will gladly welcome you for tours and tastings. Their "home:" is an old abbey, the Abbaye de l'Obedience. and the tour is fascinating... not to mention the delicious wines. ;-D
Most wineries are available to you if you contact them in advance and make an appointment. Others are only available to the trade. Domaine Francois Raveneau is among those, sadly.
ChefJune: Thanks for your reply. Unfortunately my initial plans have taken a major change so I will not be heading towards that area of France this time around. But based on your reply, I have noted Loiseaux as a place to hit the next time we head that way. Three more days until France; so excited!
Have you (or anyone else) been to both Lemeloise and to Hostellerie de Levernois? During the time that we are in the area we will probably only want to do one restaurant like that. Fanoffrance (or anyone else), can you provide a comparison of the two restaurants? Note that we will be staying at the Hostellerie de Levernois so that may play into things too.
I had dinner at Levernois once. I enjoyed it a lot, but would definitely prefer Lameloise if I had to choose one. Compared to Lameloise, Levernois struck me as simpler, less imaginative and distinctive, just standard excellent food. Also, I don't like the decoration of the dining room at Levernois.
I also agree with Parigi, "...you may want to bear in mind that Burgundy cuisine is quite rich. One good resto meal per day is quite enough." A couple of lunch possibilities in Beaune that are quick and good are Le Carnot on Place Monge (oddly has good pizzas - also good soup/salad bistro fare) and Crep' Anges near the Place Madeliene. Le Gourmandin on Place Carnot is also a place where you can get a full meal or just a little and still feel comfortable. Finally, Cheval Noir just across from Jardin des Remparts has great food and you can feel free to order as much or as little as you want. Picnic is a great option too. Some cheese from Alain Hess, some bread from 3 Epis, fruit from the market, and of course wine!
You said, "read about Olivier Leflaive wine lunch but while the wine sounds great, I'm hesitant about the food. Do any wineries do wine tastings with lunch?"
Why hesitatant about the food? It is not the best you'll ever have, but it is good and complements the wines well. Other wineries with table d'hotes are Comte Senard in Aloxe Corton and Pierre Bouree in Gevry-Chambertin.
"Ma Cuisine (how far in advance should I try for a reservation?)" - you can reserve early without them thinking it's odd - so as soon as you know you're dates it would be fine. I'd contact them at least 2-3 weeks before if it is a holiday weekend, but usually not too much of an issue on a Monday. I always reconfirm a few days before, but that is just my habit with all restos.
I'll also second ChefJune on Domain Laroche in Chablis. Great stuff and very nice people! Chablis is very different from most of Burgundy in that there are some bigger places there that are all open for tasting without reservations - e.g. Laroche, Wm. Fevre, Chablisienne (sp?), and Bichot/Long DePaquit.
Again agree with June on the wine tastings in Burgundy, most places (other than the really big guys like DRC) will welcome you for a tasting by appointment. Usually you can arrange it all by email. Some stop in /no appointment places in Beaune are Patriarche and Caveau des Cordeliers (these are both the whole self tasting/wandering in the wine cellar experience) near Beaune in Aloxe are Michel-Voarick (AWESOME wines), Corton Andre, and Proprieters de Aloxe-Corton (kind of snotty folks here in my book).
Hope this helps!