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La Pergola vs Le Cinq...which did you prefer?

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I'd great appreciate hearing from anyone whose been to both restaurants to compare them. To date, Le Cinq was the most incredible dining experience we've ever had.

Now that I'm planning a trip to Italy in celebration of our wedding anniversary and my husband's birthday, I'm wondering if La Pergola is of the same caliber . I realize it is 3 stars, but am interested in hearing from anyone who has been to both and which they preferred.

Thank you so much!

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  1. Sorry, I wish I could answer your question. But I loved Le Cinq too--have not dined at that level in Italy so am curious what kind of responses you'll get. The whole experience at Le Cinq is beautiful and precise yet I found Briffard's cooking...soulful is not exactly the right word.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Leely2

      I have a picture of Le Cinq's seaweed butter in my kitchen! Truly the most extraordinary dining experience. I can say with certainty that anyone who goes to Paris should save up their money and calories to experience it. I'm just wondering if people feel the same way about La Pergola. For some reason the photos and comments I've read online don't seem to inspire the same..."we just have to go there" feeling. And I'm sure I've been ruined with Le Cinq. The bar is awfully high after Le Cinq.

    2. Your post is almost impossible to answer to. I have been to Le Cinq twice, most recent last year under Briffard and La Pergola once three years ago. La Pergola is definitely in the same caliber but that does not mean that you will have the same “incredible” experience. A restaurant, even on its best day, cannot guarantee that. The rest really depends on the individual; it might be food preference (French or Italian food), the city (Paris or Rome), your particular table and most important, your mood at the time.
      From my own experience, I prefer my dinner Le Pergola to either of my two at Le Cinq, The room at Le Cinq is beautiful but for me, something out of House Beautiful. Even with the spectacular view, the ambience at La Pergola is more intimate with more characters. Can’t fault the service at either. For me, the cooking Hans Beck is more precise than Briffard. On the tasting menu at Le Cinq, couple courses were not stellar: the lobster overcooked and the braised lamb had very little flavor, more bistro than fine dining.

      3 Replies
      1. re: PBSF

        I appreciated hearing your thoughts, thank you!

        1. re: DaisyM

          I've been to both (most recently in the last few months!) - in fact I went back to Rome just to eat at La Pergola:)
          The setting is much more romantic at LP esp if you go when the outside terrace is open and are lucky enough to sit there. The food is incredible - easily on a par (or better) than Le Cinq. I find the service to be "warmer" and more generous at LP. Both have been extreme highlights of my food experiences (and I've been lucky enough to have had quite a few wonderful ones - and I live in an area that has wonderful food at all levels). I wouldn't miss LP (but make sure to get a reservation early!).

          1. re: estnet

            Estnet, you sold me! We'll go. I'm not going to tell my husband about the dessert box. He'll just love that. Thank you!