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Aug 23, 2011 08:51 PM

Itinerary Critique please!

Dear all,

I would oh so grateful if you could critique my itinerary in Paris. It will be the first time my partner and I are in Paris and we are not sure how heavy food will be/whether we can take it all!

This is what I came up with from the vast knowledge of the board!

Day 1: Dinner - Frenchie
Day 2: Day trip to St Mont Michel
Day 3: Dinner - Pierre Gagnaire
Day 4: Lunch - Jules Verne, Dinner - Chez L'ami Jean
Day 5: Day trip to Versailles
Day 6: Lunch - Ledoyen, Dinner - Le Chateaubriand
Day 7: Lunch - Le Comptoir au relais, Dinner - Le Cinq

I think the last two days might be pushing it, but we would love to try everything out!

Thanks so much in advance!

L'ami Jean
27 Rue Malar, Paris, Île-de-France 75007, FR

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  1. For me, despite my gluttony, two serious meals in a day is too much.

    14 Replies
    1. re: mr_gimlet

      Totally agree. With two good meals spaced so closely together on days 4, 6 and 7, you enjoy less instead of more. All your experience will be blurred.

      1. re: Parigi

        Agree w Parigi. Also, there's a clustering of formal Michelin star-type places close together rather than a broader variety of styles. So, I'd sprinkle in some lighter fare and some non-French options ( eg, Ze Kitchen Gallerie).

        Ze Kitchen Gallerie
        4 Rue des Grands Augustins, Paris, Île-de-France 75006, FR

        1. re: cortez

          Thanks for the replies guys! What would you suggest I take out; assuming I would be left with 5 serious restaurants for 5 out of 7 days~~

          1. re: peachy3

            I agree with Cortez on the overrepresentation of star-type places. Therefore if I were to eliminate som restos, I'd eliminate some of the star placds on the days where you have two meals scheduled, except for your last night at Le Cinq, which would be a magnus opus way out.

            Day 4: I'd eliminate Lunch at Jules Verne and keep dinner Chez L'ami Jean. Actually Chez l'Ami Jean my be more suited for lunch, when things are less hectic than dinnertime.
            Except that a Gagnaire dinner followed closely by a Chez l'Ami Jean lunch would still be too intense. Can you make the Gagnaire meal a lunch instead of dinner on Day 3?

            Day 6: I'd eliminate Ledoyen,

            Day 7: i'd keep Dinner at Le Cinq

            " I would be left with 5 serious restaurants for 5 out of 7 days~~"

            You make it sound like such deprivation. In the contrary, 5 serious restaurants in 7 days is already really pushing it. :-)

            1. re: peachy3

              Hi there, i'm also going to Paris first time with my hubby for a week!
              We are going to have lunch in Guy Savoy and I plan to skip a normal dinner on that night and go to Lafayette Gourmet to have some snacks/ light dinner! Heard that their food court is good!
              I will only schedule 1 serious meal each day as I think it will spend too much time and the time for lunch and dinner will get too close...

              1. re: chipndale

                You have the right idea.
                But time consumption is only one of the several problems.
                For me the major problems of restaurant over-scheduling are:
                (1) overeating, which is unpleasant;
                (2) palette sensory overload.

                A great meal takes time to digest, and I don't mean just physically. You need time to evaluate and appreciate all the new sensations. If, before you fully absorb the experience, you are already on to another blowout meal in another restaurant, you are not doing either of the meals justice. Later when you think back, you mainly remember leaving this or that restaurant moaning, and all the dishes and their overwhelm blur together in your memory.

                1. re: chipndale

                  "Lafayette Gourmet to have some snacks/ light dinner! Heard that their food court is good" - it closes at 8:00 every day apart from thursday when it is 9:00. Not really a food court, more a big department store with a few cafes and restaurants and some snack counters in the food hall.

                  1. re: PhilD

                    Thanks for your information~ =)
                    I've already scheduled this on Thur and hope can arrive there at around 7 to 8pm!

                    I thought it is a supermarket with some cooked food counter?
                    And I also saw someone said there are oysters..
                    If I got this wrong? Thanks!

                    1. re: chipndale

                      Yes they have a few food counters through the food store - but not really like a true food court (or at least the ones I am used to). The other thing to watch is how long they stay open, IIRC they may do the bulk of business during the day and therefore maybe close earlier than the shop as demand wanes.

                      My advice head to one of the little wine bars to have a snack (plate of charcuterie, or cheese) and glass of wine.

                      1. re: PhilD

                        Then I think I better to have a Plan B for my night!

                        1. re: chipndale

                          A wine bar sounds like a good option.

                          1. re: Parigi

                            Thanks! let me find if there is any wine bar around my apartment =)

                            1. re: chipndale

                              Are we supposed to guess where you live? :-)

                              1. re: Parigi

                                Just thinking I should open another thread for the discussion instead of keep asking sth unrelated under peachy3 thread =P

        2. l know Frenchie is a tough ticket, but l would also skip J Verne and the lunch at Ledoyen, regardless of how great the food is, as too much and put Le Comptoir in for a late lunch Day 1. l am assuming you are traveling early day 1 and skip a formal dinner, if there is no pressure on sleep from traveling l would consider Le Quincy for dinner day 1, again l am not a great booster of Frenchie.

          1. Thanks so much for your replies everyone!

            I've now changed the itinerary to, due to everyone's superior knowledge:

            Day 1: Late Lunch (the 1445 option) at Le Comptoir du Relais
            Day 2: Dinner - Pierre Gagnaire
            Day 3: Day trip to Mont St Michel
            Day 4: Lunch - Chez L'ami Jean
            Day 5: Day trip to Versailles
            Day 6: Dinner - Le Chateaubriand
            Day 7: Dinner - Le Cinq

            I realised I spelt some places wrongly before - I apologise!

            We will have to go back to Paris next time to try all the other superb food. Where would you recommend to fill in the blank meals before/after restaurants? We plan to visit boulangerie, but maybe markets or cafes?

            Thanks once again!

            L'ami Jean
            27 Rue Malar, Paris, Île-de-France 75007, FR

            7 Replies
            1. re: peachy3

              The Enfants Rouges market has nice lunch stalls. It was just reviewed on this board - excellently by Steve - as of a few hours ago.
              Steve also had great info on snacky eats. His list of Jacques Génin damage cracks me up. How many were they at Génin? An army?

              1. re: peachy3

                R Lenoir marche on Thurs and Sun. Place Aligre everyday but Monday

                1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                  You might want a late dinner reservation somewhere on the Versaille day since the main meal the next day is dinner. There aren't any really good food places near Versaille so you will want to bring a picnic lunch from Paris to enjoy in the gardens and then will likely be looking for a good dinner when you return to Paris.

                  1. re: plafield

                    Great revision to your itinerary.

                    Per play field's comments, I'd consider Spring or Frenchie on Day 5 after picnic at Versailles. Neither is formal dress-up or too fancy. Good fun places after a traveling day.

                    1. re: cortez

                      I'd say yes to Spring as well and Septime -- it's better than Frenchie, in my opinion, but similarly situated in terms of cuisine.

                      1. re: cortez

                        I consider Spring too weighty in terms of number of plates, quantity of food and the intellectual connection necessary to truly enjoy Rose's food. Septime is lovely, but again is worthy of your attention.

                        After your trek out of town, I would pick something much lighter than Spring, Septime or even Frenchie. Just my opinion...

                        1. re: mangeur

                          For something light in that neck of the woods, La Garde Robe (rue de l'abre sec, 75001) is a superb wine bar with very good snacks/ small plates availible. If its a restaurant you're after....La Regalade St Honore/ Les Fines Gueles

                2. Thanks once more! We have slotted in Septime for the day after Versailles.

                  With regards to Pierre Gagnaire, is lunch much different to dinner? We would love to get the whole experience, but a lot of posts are saying how good a deal lunch is at just a little over 100euros.

                  We will definitely post a report!

                  1. Hi everybody! We've had a long thought about our itinerary and have decided to make it 10 days instead, giving us more time to devour food. Below is our updated itinerary, and we would love a little more critique!

                    Day 1: Dinner - Pierre Gagnaire
                    Day 2: Daytrip
                    Day 3: Lunch - Chez L'ami Jean
                    Day 4: Dinner - Le Chateaubriand
                    Day 5: Daytrip
                    Day 6: Lunch - Le Comptoir du Relais
                    Day 7: Dinner - L'arpege
                    Day 8: Daytrip
                    Day 9: Dinner - Septime
                    Day 10: Dinner - Le Cinq

                    Thanks sooo much!

                    Also, any suggestions for places to eat at Versailles would be splendid. I will search the board too though~

                    L'ami Jean
                    27 Rue Malar, Paris, Île-de-France 75007, FR

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: peachy3

                      I would take picnic fixings to Versailles.

                      1. re: ChefJune

                        +1. You can even get them walking from the station to the palace.

                        There is a baked potato van in the grounds that was doing a roaring trade though.

                      2. re: peachy3

                        La Veranda restaurant at Trianon Hotel..lovely
                        Also, had lite bites in a cafe hidden in the gardens for wine.
                        Do they still do Sunday fountain with classical music playing...Versaille is stunning!