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Apr 16, 2012 05:44 AM

A joyous 3 weeks of good food in Paris with no dress code required? help?

Hi everyone,
we are coming up to last 3 weeks of our stay in Paris, we have been here amonth plus but did not do much yet since we are working a lot.

I am looking for the following:
weekday lunch places (or decent dinner) with lunch menu that are a good deal (ie: could not afford dinner) that have no dress code.

My lovely hubby is the best but refuse to follow the dictat of suits/slacks/tie at the restaurant. He can't stand to be told what to wear.
He dresses nicely, but usually has a pair of dark jeans, a nice shirt, nice shoes(think allen edmonds) and eventually a jacket that is not a suit jacket (think a trendy tweed thick jacket, etc..t)

So, I am trying to follow his refusal to wear slacks/jacket while still enjoying my food :)

I am considering carré des feuillants,but I am thinking it will be too uncomfortable..

Any places not to miss?
So far I have au passage (since it i 2 minutes a way from us) l'ami jean. la regalade st honoré, l'agrume, passage 53, eventually yamtcha..
Frenchie was on the list but out of budget unless I did not read right.,

We are looking for the type of good deal like less than 50 euros for 3 course at lunch. when dinner is 200 euros. I am french but I am not really into classic french food. I LOVE contemporary american. (and will say to any of my compatriotes that what I miss the most about the US is the cheese and the food ;)... which is true!)

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  1. I thought Frenchie was 38 euros. I've not eaten there.

    Sola and Kei have good value lunch menus relative to dinner and your husband doesn't need a suit/tie at either.

    9 Replies
    1. re: PattyC

      " l'ami jean. la regalade st honoré, l'agrume, passage 53, eventually yamtcha..
      Frenchie was on the list but out of budget unless I did not read right"

      Frenchie now is around 40-some euro for the menu, not including wine.
      Chez l'Ami Jean has a great 42 euro dégustation menu. If it is your first time and if you freak out about lack of space and about chef screams, best to go for lunch there.
      passage 53 and yamtcha are more expensive than Frenchie.
      l'Agrume and La Régalade SH are not in the same league as the other restos on the list.

      According to your description, your husband will be fine in a nice shirt and jeans (washed regularly I hope). But with all due respect, I don't understand why normal trousers defy packing when jeans are much heavier.

      1. re: Parigi

        Thanks for the Frenchie update. I wouldn't consider the 42 euro menu at CAJ a degustation. It seemed more like a standard entree/plat/dessert with several choices for each course. I would consider the 55 euro menu a mini degustation and the 80 euro one a normal degustation.

        1. re: PattyC

          " I wouldn't consider the 42 euro menu at CAJ a degustation. "

          It has 2 starters 1 main and 3 desserts. It is called a mini-dégustation on the carte. Call me crazy, I'd use the same word dégustaion without much thought. :-)

          1. re: Parigi

            That's not how it was explained to us by our waiter. However we did not end up ordering it.

        2. re: Parigi

          Hi Parigi, I will clarify the jeans question. They are definitely a darker, nicer wahs (No crazy thing going on here) we are actually living in France now, in Paris for a couple months. So hubby brought what he wears. it is not a question of packing. We work from home , has been in IT for many years and therefore does not own slacks that he would consider wearing unless he has too (except the linen pants or light summer pants, which are not in season). He is a nice jeans kinda guy.
          He is not against looking nice or else, he just can't stand being forced to, and therefore will refuse to join me to a restaurant where I REQUIRE him to wear a certain attire.
          We have eaten a nice restaurant in the States, but I understand that France is more strict on these silly dress code and don't want to be embarrassed.
          Great to know about frenchie. I will def make a reservation.

          1. re: kirikara

            I don't find Paris to be all that different from major cities in the US and have seen a wide range of styles at fine dining establishments. There are some that do require jackets but very few. You'll see more men in suits at weekday lunches but that's because that's what they're wearing to work.

            1. re: PattyC

              Patty - I do agree. Ironically I found that i felt underdressed in a place in San Francisco on my recent trip yet I never feel like that in Paris. And I wonder if there is a problem of definition: in Paris "smart dress" can be quite casual, it is good quality but it allows for lots of personality.

              At Chez Panisse I was really surprised by the number of jackets and ties on a Monday night. It actually felt quite formal and I felt underdressed in clothes that fit in well in Paris. Thus I wonder if the US interpretation of "smart" is relatively formal when compared to Europe...?

              My dress standard isn't governed by the restaurant but my wife. If she dresses up god help me if I don't. And she likes to put on her finery if going out to nice places. That said none of the places on Kiirkara's list will object to jeans, however there is a world of difference between jeans paired with an Etro shirt and jacket and Chanel boots, and jeans with your best Old Navy polo and clean Nikes.

              1. re: PhilD

                "My dress standard isn't governed by the restaurant but my wife."

                As it should be ;)

                Actually you might be on to something. Yesterday I was in Pasadena and looked through the window of a French bistro trying to take a peek at the food but instead what I noticed was the surprising number of jackets and ties. Not the type of place I would've expected such formal dress and I was a bit caught off guard too.

                Conversely, the more trips to Paris we've made, the more I've noticed my husband feeling at ease dressing casually. For years I've been telling him that casual and elegant aren't mutually exclusive and it's finally starting to sink in :)

            2. re: kirikara

              My husband is also a dark/new jeans kind of guy. You describe a good shirt and shoes. I think he's good to go at all of the restaurants you list. Enjoy!

        3. Thanks everyone :)
          I am a little more reassured. I wont try le Cinq (:)..) but it sounds like i should be ok everywhere else.. Here is the list I came up with so far..

          Carre des Feuillants
          Glou(cheap and close to us)
          Au passage
          L by Liza
          Breizh café
          Yamtchá (?)
          Sens Uniques
          Helene Darroze Salon
          Sola (Maybe)
          Passage 53

          2 Replies
          1. re: kirikara

            You might feel a bit underdressed at Carre des Feuillants.

            1. re: ScottnZelda

              Thanks! tuens out we cancelled our plans of going there.. too much other options to bother and a little out of our low budget price point.
              But we have a long list of great place I am looking forward to discover..