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Feb 23, 2012 09:00 AM

So many opinions...what restaurant do you like that desn't get raves on the board?

We all have our favorites in Paris. But sometimes when we mention that certain favorite restaurant (whatever it might be) on this board, an out pouring of NOOOO's follow. What is your fave restaurant in Paris, that doesn't ever turn up on someone's '4day3night' list. And what about it do you like?

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  1. Well I don't think there are big NOOOos to this one but it's not usually a rec for 3 days in Paris. We love La Rotonde (LA ROTONDE MONTPARNASSE - 105, Boul. Montparnasse - 75006 PARIS Tél : 01 43 26 48 26 - Fax : 01 46 34 52 40 - E-mail : infos@rotondemontparnasse.) and almost always do our first meal there when we're exhausted and want to dine early without a fuss. They serve all day so on arrival day it's perfect to go late in the afternoon and have their most excellent steak tartare (served with great frites) and esargots. All the food is excellent quality and the service is brusque but friendly. The inside is nothing special as brasseries go but the outdoor seating is some of the best anywhere for great people watching.

    Another favorite that won't make anyone's top 5 list is Le Hangar (12 Impasse Berthaud in the 3rd ph: 01 42 74 55 44) A tiny little place with high quality, well prepared food for a fair price. Not necessarily worth crossing town for but if you're in the area definitely!

    2 Replies
    1. re: plafield

      Le Hangar is on my want-to-try list but keeps getting pushed aside by new-comers. I've never read a poor review of LH.

      1. re: mangeur

        Uh, here's one. Maybe. The last time I lunched at Le Hangar, I found the food ok. It is the right spot for the area. I would not cross town for it.
        Also there are separate windows on top of the large windows that give on to the terrace, which let in all the smoke. The door too was left open to facilitate the waitstaff bringing dishes in and out. Result: no real separation between non-smoking and smoking areas.
        I am really not a non-smoking fundamentalist. Takes a lot of smoke to bother me.

    2. Lilane on the rue Gracieuse off the place Monge in the 5th. Great food (somewhat contemporary without being overreachingly creative), smiling service, a place where I always run into friends, very correct prices.

      Caius and Zinc Caius on the rue Armaillé in the 17th. A French (and superior) version of Frenchie. It's my lunchtime cantine of choice (I work near the Arc de Triomphe). And even if it weren't so convenient, I'd still want to eat here as often as possible.

      La Maison de l'Amérique Latine on the boulevard Saint Germain in the 7th. Summer only. Lunch on the terrace followed by a stroll in the garden is as close to idyllic as I can find in Paris. Despite the name, a very "tout Paris" kinda place.

      Le Métropolitain on the rue Jouy of the rue Franços Miron in the 4th. Re-invented classics, great prices, trendy clientele.

      Chez Nénesse, rue Saintogne in the 3rd. Vieille France without being cliché-ed. Excellent value. A steady stream of eclectic regulars. One day you might be sitting next to Christian Lacroix and the next time, a couple of fleshy gardiens from one of the nearby hôtels particuliers.

      Le Chardenoux des Prés on the rue Dragon in Saint-Germain-des-Prés/ 6th. Revisited classics with finesse. Oh so good.

      Chez Marie Louise, rue Marie-et-Louise, near the Canal Saint-Martin/ 10th. A refined cuisine at great prices.

      L'Alcôve on the due Didot off the rue Alésia in the 14th. A French-Algerian méchouie/ barbecue run by an ex-butcher who really knows his stuff. Extraordinarily good grilled meats, horrible veggies, and very superior North African desserts. Value value value. Almost qualifies as a hole in the wall but the genial service, excellent cuisine and a modicum of style saves it from being just another ethnic joint.

      And about 100 more I can think of. It is indeed irksome that Chowhounders tend to recommend the same small circle of restos over and over.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Parnassien

        Thanks for this post. It is nice to hear about good, "ordinary" places that escape the attention of all the critics who seem to run in the same narrow circles. This is not to say that I don't love Septime, Spring, Frenchie, et al, but it is helpful to find other, less vaunted places. One of my favorites when in the mood for a proper restaurant with traditional cuisine is "Court Bouillon" on Rue du Theatre in the 15th and I have never seen a mention of it by the critics or the excellent "fines gueules" here on Chow Hound.

        Perhaps we can persuade some of our CH experts to name a few "lesser knowns" of good quality.

        1. re: Parnassien

          What a wonderful list, cannot wait for the 100 more. My addition would be Le Grand Pan, a long walk from any metro station in the wilds of the 15th.

          1. re: Parnassien

            this is what i really look for here. info that is actually new. thanks.

            1. re: Parnassien

              Parnassien's list looks excellent, and this thread is a great idea. I'll add one: Café Panique,

              12, rue des Messageries (10eme, Métro: Poissenniere). Dinner only (a recent change). See I've mentioned this place a year or so ago, but heard no response on this forum.

              The cooking is contemporary and bright. The stylish room, previously a textile workshop, sits under a large skylight. The kitchen is open, behind windows atop a counter. A spiral staircase seems to offer seating above, but when we were there it was not in use, and in any event it seems preferable to be on the main floor where you can watch the kitchen and staff at work. There is an art-gallery feel about the place, and if I recall correctly, a gallery is located right next door.The restaurant itself is hidden down an interior hallway -- from the street, it's easy to walk by without noticing it.

              We've not been since late 2009, but it seems to be getting good reviews still. And: Open Monday. -- Jake

              1. re: Jake Dear

                The reason l have not gone here is not the fault of the restaurant, but as a menucentric person, have not found choices that make me want to go. l have checked a few times since the review by Jake Dear, will keep checking.

            2. actually i should also be thanking the OP. great question.

              1. We went in December to La Regalade Saint-Honore. Everyone always talks about the other original restaurant and talks down this one. It was just lovely! The staff was warm and inviting, lots of room between tables, and mixed ages eating, which was important to us. We dont like being the oldest nor the youngest. Starting with the pate and pickles a three-course meal was 35 euro with a bottle of Oeillade 2008 23 e. The pate ? Delicious. The gambas with risotto entree? Yummy. The chicken for the plat? Perfect. And the pear dessert? I could have eaten two. The mister finished with the riz cuit au lait, with the caramel but I loved the pears more. I would go back and recommend. Perhaps I will one day try the original but I was most happy with this choice.

                4 Replies
                1. re: t14072

                  My preference for the original or the rue St-Honoré version depends on the season. Whenever the temperature gets above 25 C, I avoid the original cuz the ventilation is horrible ... sweat sweat sweat

                  1. re: Parnassien

                    What a great thread! I'm printing it for future use.
                    We have enjoyed dinner at Au Vieux Comptoir 3 times. It's starting to crop up on some sites, but it's always been full of locals when we've been (and indeed, it was a local we met at another tiny place in the Marais, Caffe Angela, who steered us towards it). No menu, but the a la carte choices are full of French bistro classics like andouillette and quasi de veau. Our hostess kindly chose wine by the glass to accompany our different course choices when asked. We loved the bustling, friendly service and the steady hum of a full room of happy, satisfied diners.


                    1. re: parisjo

                      How about Le Temps des cerises on the rue de la Cerisaie in a far corner of the Marais near the Bastille. Went for lunch, friendly service, lively bar, good food. After walked to the Seine to catch the boat that goes under the streets of Paris to the Canal Saint Martin.

                      1. re: t14072

                        Second Le Temps des Cerises as a good lunch choice. It was a favorite of Maurice Naughton's see