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Mar 21, 2012 12:13 PM

Appropriate Dress in Paris

Thanks to advice from this board and a few friends, we are booked to dine at Caius, Saturne, Spring and Les Papilles in two weeks. I would be grateful if anyone who has been to these restaurants could comment on appropriate dress. My husband would prefer not to wear a jacket and tie although he would rather not be the only male diner without. Are slacks suitable for women? Thanks, and will post on our return.

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  1. Truthfully, a jacket for a man is seldom out of place at the kind of restaurant you list. Not a tie, not a suit, not even a collared shirt, but a recognizable jacket will take him anywhere. At the minimum, think of what Steve Jobs would have worn out to dinner: decent jeans, a mock turtleneck and a jacket.

    Women can get by in slacks just about everywhere.

    1. Always have a jacket with you; not fancy, but a nice simple jacket (lightweight) with a shirt.

      Or have a "nicer" shirt with a nice sweater.

      1. Agreed with the others. Jacket's the ticket.

        1. While l fought the jacket idea for a long time. l now always carry a sports coat with me, feel much more comfortable; a tie, nah

          1. Truthfully I never wear jackets to dinner... (except when I went to Gagnaire)... But I do dress daily with collar shirts, nice jeans or pants, and always, always nice leather shoes (never snickers).
            So I guess if your style is more of a laidback jeans, tshirt, you could add the jacket in to class it up a notch.

            14 Replies
            1. re: Rio Yeti

              Rio - I am intrigued by the thought of your chocolate bar shoes. - useful for a snack?

              1. re: PhilD

                Useful for a candy from the Boulangerie !

                1. re: Rio Yeti

                  In Paris, always a jacket in better restaurants.

                  And no Hawaiian shirts underneath.

                  1. re: SWISSAIRE

                    Not just Paris - this goes for anywhere on the planet!

                      1. re: Peg

                        One of the magical things about Paris is that people dress up, it is such an homage to a fabulous city. No shorts, no t-shirts with logos, no sneakers. I don't know why people don't think it's fun to dress up. Even my New Yorker boyfriend loves to put on his finery when we are there and his usual outfit consists of something with a tank top!

                      2. re: SWISSAIRE

                        Isn't it "no Hawaiian shirts ever" ? (except maybe ... in Hawaii.... maybe...)

                        1. re: Rio Yeti

                          Actually, we just saw a lot of them in Brasil.

                          Formal wear apparently in the Nordeste-Tropical regions, with a good pair of slacks. Makes sense there, but not out to a better restaurant in Paris.

                          1. re: SWISSAIRE

                            I have several nice Hawaiian shirts that I wear to dinner… when in Hawaii! (yes, sometimes in Florida too and once in awhile, when I want to irritate hipsters, in Brooklyn). I left them home when we lived in Florence last summer, even though it was very hot there in August. I will leave them home again when we're in Paris and Provence next month. I don't remember ever going to a nice restaurant in Italy or France without wearing a sport jacket, even if I have a Polo shirt (off brand of course) under it and not a "regular" collared shirt. It's how I feel comfortable in the environment. To each his own I guess.

                            1. re: Steve R

                              "It's how I feel comfortable in the environment. "
                              And there is such a thing as a beautiful Hawaiian shirt. Some Paris hipsters - the real rad - may agree with you.

                              1. re: Parigi

                                "beautiful Hawaiian shirt."
                                My best one - beautiful Hawaiian shirt - was purchased at the PX in the hospital I was Evac'd to from the Nam, I would go out every morning past the guards/MP's to eat (getting back on topic) the finest sushi/noodles/tempura/tonkatsu/etc possible in 1967 and I'll bet the locals had never seen such splendor in a shirt.
                                But wear it here, as hip as I'm claimed to be - no way.

                  2. re: Rio Yeti

                    Circumstances have meant that I've eaten at starred restaurants in trainers, and have always felt perfectly at ease (which for me is a sign of impeccable service).
                    Dress codes here are more relaxed than in England and the US, for better, and for once - I'm always surprised by the casual approach to weddings and especially funerals.

                    1. re: vielleanglaise

                      Sorry to be macabre, but the last time my husband wore a suit to a funeral, he said that he felt like the corpse.