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Feedback on some options in Paris please?

c
comiendosiempre Jul 24, 2011 09:57 AM

We are traveling to Paris next week and will be in Paris for a number of nights, then heading to the south of France. We are two adult foodies and a teen foodie, who may not be as willing to try some more adventurous dishes but appreciates good food. We all love to cook and eat. In any event, we are looking for solid mid priced to perhaps luxe options mostly for dinner. Regardless of fancy or informal we are most interested in the food, and some atmosphere. My French is pretty passable.

We think lunches will be lighter, but still want to eat well. We are staying in the First but can travel. Many of the spots I have identified seem to be bistros, which we like but, I'm also wondering if there are some lighter options, some more modern approaches. An Italian suggestion also would be appreciated, we love pasta. We also would like a one or two star spot for a splurge but haven't really found one and the three star spots all seem to be close to 150-200+ Euros per person, which is too cher. Your feedback would be much appreciated by this hungry NYC family, thanks in advance.

Olio Pan Vino
Les Fines Gueules - likely the former for lunch on day one and the latter for an early dinner.

Le Bistro Paul Bert
Le Bistro des Gastronomes
L'Ardoise
La Biche au Bois
Le Cafe des Musees
Le Hide Koba's Bistro (is this mostly fish?)
La Regalade (though the reviews seem across the map)
Chez Denise
Le Mini Palais
Ze Kitchen Galerie (a good one star option?)
Simone & Nicola (lunch)
Citronelle et Galanga

Anyplace similar to Aux Lyonnais, which looks great but will be closed when we will be in Paris?

We also likely will walk along Paris Plage, any recommendations for someplace near the river or with a view?
Thanks again.

  1. souphie Jul 25, 2011 12:26 PM

    You can do lunch at Guy Savoy or l'Arpège or Le Cinq in your budget. All marvelous, Le Cinq and Savoy safer bets. If you really want your splurge to be at night, La grande Cascade has a 135 menu that is very good, and even a 85 one with wine, that is less exciting but quite good.

    The bistrots on your list do not offer light lunches. In general, you should not plan two restaurants a day during your stay unless you have exceptional digestive abilities. Just grab a croque monsieur or cheese and bread or something during the day. Don't forget also that you don't have to resist the temptations from the manybakeries and pastry shops.

    Totally endorse Régalade and Chez l'Ami Jean, of course. Spring will be open. Not Chez Denise. Aux Lyonnais is not great. You can try l'Auberge Bressane for instance, or Joséphine for traditional or very traditional food. People love Bistrot Paul Bert and I still can't understand why but it's not bad, which is more than I can say about l'Ardoise. Bistrots des gastronomes has some potential, but doesn't always deliver.

    7 Replies
    1. re: souphie
      c
      comiendosiempre Jul 25, 2011 07:43 PM

      Thank you for that feedback. Do you have some suggestions for some "lighter" or more modern options?

      1. re: comiendosiempre
        souphie Jul 26, 2011 01:20 PM

        Most modern restaurants tend to be light (Chateaubriand, Astrance, Saturne, ZKG, even Spring, Claude Colliot, etc.). But they're still French restaurants, so there's no configuration in which I would recommend two restaurants a day -- they just won't be enjoyed, at least not past the first couple of days)

        1. re: souphie
          souphie Jul 27, 2011 10:07 AM

          OK, I was wrong. Today I had lunch at Septime, and I could clearly have lunch at Chez Denise tonight. Or rather le Quincy, which is actually open (until the 11!). Or both -- or at least, that's what I feel like.

          1. re: souphie
            mangeur Jul 27, 2011 10:45 AM

            Alternatively, the evening after our Septime lunch, we enjoyed a little cheese, pate and wine in our room, then walked from Pont du Carrousel to Mouffetard for an ice cream. i.e., no formal meal that night.

            1. re: mangeur
              souphie Jul 27, 2011 12:24 PM

              Alternatively indeed.

            2. re: souphie
              c
              comiendosiempre Jul 27, 2011 06:26 PM

              How was Septime?

              1. re: comiendosiempre
                souphie Jul 27, 2011 09:29 PM

                There was one brilliant dish (gaspaccho) and everything else seemed pointless to me, though not bad at all and based on good ingredients. Then again, it is starting to be clear that I don't "get" contemporary French cooking (I feel the same mix of boredom and frustration at Satutne, at the old Racines, at l'Astrance, at Claude Colliot, etc. all very respectable establishments). And one pathetic little slice of duck served as "magret" has the ability to piss me off.

                (I would except Chateaubriand, which actually impresses me).

                I liked the feeling of the place a lot, much better than it looks on pictures Weird that they have lovely windows with a view on a flowery courtyard and put the toilest rather than tables.

      2. d
        dcbbq Jul 25, 2011 06:34 AM

        We are just back from Paris and still raving about at la regalade - the one in the 14th. The food, the service and the atmosphere all were wonderful. It is our new must-visit restaurant in Paris. I posted in more detail on a Montparnesse-Bastille Day-Quimper post

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