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Any ideas for restaurants in Fontainebleau (near Paris)?

greatgatsby Aug 31, 2011 07:29 AM

Our family (all serious foodies is moving from Italy to Fontainebleau for few months and we are excited to get up close to all this fabulous food!

However, neither my wife nor me have any idea about restaurants in Fontainebleau itself or the area around it. We are pretty familiar with Paris and dining trips to there will be a great thing to do on weekends, but it takes about an hour to get to Paris and we are guessing that there must be great places also much closer by.

Funnily enough, all searches on Chowhound for "Fontainebleau" bring up Miami Beach (and the glitzy Fontainebleau Hotel there), but nothing on the French board...

Anyone familiar with the town or the area? All hints would be greatly appreciated and fill a gap here on Chowhound! :)

Thanks a lot, greatgatsby

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  1. Parigi RE: greatgatsby Aug 31, 2011 07:34 AM

    I like the farm-fresh food of the Ferme de la Recette in nearby Echouboulains. You need a car of course.

    1. ChefJune RE: greatgatsby Aug 31, 2011 08:47 AM

      I have a good friend who recently moved from there. I can ask her for recommendations.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ChefJune
        greatgatsby RE: ChefJune Aug 31, 2011 03:13 PM

        That would Be very kind chefjune! Thank you.

      2. w
        WtotheN RE: greatgatsby Aug 31, 2011 09:57 AM

        I lived in a nearby village some years ago, so my knowledge may be out of date. When I was there, the restaurants were rather old-school, for what that's worth. I strongly preferred to trek into Paris for fine dining. The problem is that the last train from Paris back to Fontainebleau is at some ridiculously early time like 10:30pm. You can't have a proper dinner in Paris and be on the train by 10:30pm. And I certainly couldn't drive myself home after all that wine. So, I would usually just get a hotel in Paris for the night.

        You are coming from Italy so it may be no great pizza for you, but I did enjoy Pizza Pazza quite a number of times in Fontainebleau. The creperie Ty Koz used to be very good (and great for kids), but my last visit was a bit disappointing.

        1. Jake Dear RE: greatgatsby Aug 31, 2011 10:16 PM

          In our research for our stay in Fontainebleau two years ago, we did not get the impression that there were many excellent places. To complicate matters we were there on a Sunday and Monday. We ended up taking the recommendion of our hotelier, and booked (on a Monday night) at "Croquembouche" in downtown Fontainebleau -- contemporary French cuisine -- and we enjoyed it very much. In nearby Barbizon (Sunday night), we liked, a bit less but still pretty good, the more traditional and somewhat rustic Restaurant l’Angélus. But there was another place on the other end of Barbizon that our hotel had recommended over l’Angélus, and on reflection, it looked more promising. If we go back to Barbizon we'll try it, but darn, I can't recall the name. -- Jake

          5 Replies
          1. re: Jake Dear
            greatgatsby RE: Jake Dear Oct 4, 2011 07:53 AM

            Thank you, Jake Dear. By now we have arrived in Fontainebleau and last weekend we went directly to Croquembouche for dinner. Maybe we were unlucky. All in all, the experience was not great. We went for the 4-course menu which sounded very good, but somehow the whole thing did not meet our expectations.

            The good: Food overall was good quality and nicely presented. The restaurant is relaxed and well-designed. Wine and champagne had the right temperature.

            The bad: The service was incredibly slow. Really, incredibly slow. It took them 30 minutes to get us a menu and almost 60 minutes to get our orders taken. The waiters were very kind, but forgot that we had ordered water and took 1 hour to bring some bread to nibble on. The food was generally good, but one course was completely off - after the main course they served a cheese course, which was essentially two thin and slightly dry slices of brebis on a bed of tomato sauce. I am sorry. This is cheese country and the last thing they should have served is cheese with sauce. Come on, we are in France for heaven's sake! What made it worse was that the sauce was exactly the same as the one used in the amuse bouche served before the starter. Also, the course was so small that I would have counted it as an amuse bouche, not more. So, in effect the 4-course menu is a 3-course menu. Given that Fontainebleau is a little town far from Paris, that makes the menu price a lot less attractive.

            Overall, we thought it was a bit of a disappointment and would probably not go back. So either we were unlucky or the place has gone downhill since your experience from 2 years ago.

            1. re: greatgatsby
              Jake Dear RE: greatgatsby Oct 4, 2011 09:03 AM

              Hello greatgatsby, Thanks for the follow up; it does sound a bit disappointing, and below what we experienced at Croquembouche about two years ago (and what other friends experienced early last year). -- Jake

              1. re: Jake Dear
                sunshine842 RE: Jake Dear Oct 4, 2011 12:48 PM

                Gah. I recently heard of a great restaurant in Chartrettes (15 min from Fontainebleau) and I'm having trouble recognizing it by name.

                Anybody able to help?

                I'll keep looking and will repost if I find it.

                Melun might have something decent, as well -- ViaMichelin has a couple more listed with good reviews in Vaux-le-Penil and Barbizon, too.

                1. re: Jake Dear
                  greatgatsby RE: Jake Dear Oct 6, 2011 10:06 AM

                  Hi Jake Dear, I saw your post and have asked around with a few more people in Fontainebleau and I think we were unlucky on that night. We will give it a shot again in a few weeks and see whether the experience is different. Fingers crossed! :)

                  1. re: Jake Dear
                    greatgatsby RE: Jake Dear Dec 15, 2011 05:19 AM

                    Update: Croquembouche is closing/changing owners within the next few days. Bad news for Fontainebleau I think, with few or no alternative higher quality eating places around.

              2. sunshine842 RE: greatgatsby Sep 1, 2011 01:17 AM

                can't help with specifics, but here's a Michelin list:

                Go to www.viamichelin.com

                under "display your map" enter Fontainebleau (select the one in with the 77 post code


                When the map comes up, click "find a restaurant" in the bubble.

                A new window will open, with 20 restos listed, all listed in the Michelin Red Guide, and all with reviews.

                Good luck!

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