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Aug 12, 2011 06:13 PM

Overwhelmed by choices! Where MUST we eat for our one week (perhaps ever) in Paris?

Oh, please forgive me, this has been asked before, I know...but there are so many suggestions floating around, my head is spinning. In October, my husband and I will be taking our long-delayed honeymoon (I'd say 31 years is a delay, wouldn't you? ;-) trip to Paris. I last went in 1976; my husband has never been. Given our modest lifestyle, we may never be able to return.

SO, I'm humbly seeking your list of can't miss eating experiences. We will be staying in an apartment in the Marais district. We'll probably be moving around the city a lot during the day (so lunch suggestions---and we're not adverse to making lunch our "big meal"--could be anywhere in the center city) but probably would prefer someplace closer to the apartment for dinners. We are adventuresome eaters; have no aversions. BUT we are hoping the majority of our meals will "traditional" French ones--Breton style, Provencal, Parisian, Alsatian...both seafood and meat, etc.

I'm budgeting up to $200 Euros per person, per day, for everything (transportation, sightseeing, and meals) but we can eat cheaply some days, to make room for splurges on others. So, consider this a request for a Paris Bucket List, of sorts:

IF you had one week to taste Paris--the humble and the almost grand (can't afford grand), the sidewalk cafes and the food stands, venerable old restaurants and up and coming ones, which would you recommend? We don't need to be cutting edge, but we don't want to be Snookered Tourists, either. Atmosphere is nice, but delicious food prepared with integrity is better.

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  1. I'm sure you'll receive ample replies for specific places, but the most important thing IMO is to relax & enjoy yourselves. Don't try too hard to make it the trip of a lifetime & it will be.

    Since you'll have an apartment be sure to take advantage of the markets. Enjoy a picnic or two as well.

    Happy Anniversiary!

    1. The original comment has been removed
      1. Thanks. That really was very interesting. As for poor us stuck in unlucky Paris, well I suppose we'll live with it.

        1. re: Ptipois

          Stuck in bad old Paris, that's our tragedy.

          1. re: Ptipois

            Ptipois, what you said is hysterical :) Thanks for the laugh out loud moment.

            1. re: chocoholichappy

              did that hysterical post get removed? am v. confused.

              1. re: kerosundae

                It did get removed, now mine is replying to the wrong one and it's no longer funny.

        2. it's a very subjective question, but here are a few suggestions:

          -- assuming you like oysters, Huitrerie Regis would be a very memorable experience...

          -- for one of your somewhat fancier-but-not-over-the-top lunch meals, maybe Monsieur Lapin...

          -- in the course of a week, you may want to try one N. African (e.g. Le Souk) and/or West African (e.g. Le Manguier) meal...ditto Lebanese takeout from Al Dar...

          -- for Provencal food, maybe Chez Janou (in the 3rd and likely only a short walk from your home)...i've had some hit or miss experiences there, but i still like it a lot

          -- while cheese shops abound, i'm very fond of the one on Rue St. Louis (on Ile St. Louis, on the right, near the end of the street if you are heading towards Notre Dame)...also for picnics, the smoked salmon and other salads to go at Autour du Saumon is a good place to start shopping for a heavenly picnic...

          These are just a few of the places i enjoyed and returned to often when i lived there for a few months last year...i'd also advise leaving your food itinerary somewhat flexible, as part of the joy of wandering and dining there is that randomly discovered place you stumbled upon...have a wonderful trip and please report your impressions here after :)

          1. oh, and Le Reminet for lunch!

            1 Reply
            1. re: Simon

              I second le reminet for lunch. A few years back I had a lovely meal at the Dome du Marais. My new favorite is out a ways -- la Regalade in the 14th. There's an offshoot on St Honore, but the original is worth the trip. Both are 34 euros/3 courses at dinner.
              Allard is very traditional - and good in my experience, as is Chartier (also very cheap), but you need to go late for lunch to avoid the lines. Jadis is much more modern.
              John Talbot's blog is an good resource - he always tells what he had and what it cost - and he actually has a very extensive list of restaurants rated on, as I recall, an 8 point scale (per his taste).
              A must-do for anyone with an apartment in the Marais is the market on Sunday.
              A museum pass makes for a much more relaxing visit. And if you go once, it will not be your last visit

            2. Thank you, Simon and Tulip! We are going to try standing outside Frenchie looking hopeful, some evenings before they open, to see if we can beg an early seating, too, I think. Any opinion on Auberge Nicolas Flamel? I've seen some poor reviews recently, but a friend dined there in March with rave reviews--but she's a die hard Rick Steves groupie, and he can do no wrong, as far as his guides go. ;-)

              3 Replies
              1. re: Beckyleach

                If you want to eat Frenchie's food and are happy to get there early simply go to their new wine bar which is opposite the restaurant, very similar food and no bookings taken.

                1. re: Beckyleach

                  I understand about the RS devotes. We gave friends who are the same. While I think his guides are very good for most info, things to do, transportation, hotels, etc., I don't always agree on food. I've never had an aweful meal at a resto from his nooks, but most of our favs have come from other sources. You are right to trust the folks on this board.

                  Personally we've enjoyed a couple of places I'd recommend to you...both in the 7th. Auberge Bressane & Fontaine de Mars, both discussed on this board. The second not always favorably, but our experience was nice. Also, the dinner boat cruises while touristy & only good not great foodwise, can still be a romantic, memorable experience.

                  From recommendations here we are trying out Les Papilles & the Hidden Kitchen supper club on our next pass through. Again, just remember to relax & enjoy the city. You'll have an excellent time, esp. seeing things through your hubbie's eyes for his first time in Paris.

                  One other thought, visit Montmarte in the evening, if only for a drink. Beautiful place for a stroll!

                  Have a great time!!!

                  1. re: DaTulip

                    Bertrand (host Les Papilles) advised us that they were closed over christmas.