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Jun 29, 2012 07:46 AM

For the last meal in Paris celebrating a 5 year anniversary...

Would you pick either Le Grand Vefour or Jules Verne for a romantic lunch? My wife has wanted to go to Le Grand Vefour for a while but admittedly doesn't know much of the Paris dining scene save for what I have told her. Don't get me wrong though, she does enjoy dining and is very knowledgeable about food.
I know she has no idea about the existence of Jules Verne and it might be a romantic and memorable way of ending of 10 day vacation. However, is the food just a total turn off. I know it is quite expensive for what you get but I thought they had 1 michelin star and couldn't be too bad. On the flip side, Le Grand Vefour is one she does know about and this would impress her as well.
Admittedly, the food is not the man reason for going to either of these restaurants. We will be taking care of that during our other days with Le Cinq, Spring, CLJ, Frenchie, and Josephine Chez Dumonet already lined up. Having said that, I don't want to pay through the nose for a meal and an experience that isn't worth it.

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  1. LGF has a fine lunch menu for 96 euros, three courses. No signature dishes at that price, but you get the same ambiance and fine service.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Oakglen

      But is it something that you would recommend? I realize I am going to hit hit for around $400-500 for 2 for lunch at either place but is either worth it? I am kind of leaning towards LGV but it just seems like the view from the Eiffel tower while eating might just be one of those things that you don't forget. Sometimes the food can be forgettable at some of the best places after a few years but I want to pick one place to surprise her and for it to be memorable over the years.
      Is La Tour D'Argent really that much superior in quality of food to either of these places that I need to change my mind? Is the 170 euro price fixe dinner menu going to blow LGV or Jules Verne out of the water? I know La Tour D'Argent does a 68 euro lunch menu as well but is the dinner menu for 100 euros more per person vastly superior?? I don't mind paying more if it really is worth it. What will wine cost be there if you were attempting to be cost conscious?
      Thanks so much.

      1. re: naughtyb

        They are all good and they will all deliver good food. Comparing the food at each is a debate over fine detail. If you had the money/time you would be wise to sample them all and they would all reward the effort. So for a special anniversary what other factors? The view is obviously one, both Jules Verne and Tour D'Argent are special, the latter is far more old world and formal, but it is very grand. Depends on your style.

    2. It is an aniversiary celebration and if your wife has always wanted to go to Le Grand Vefour, what is there to hmm and haa. It is a beautiful and historical restaurant with formal but terrific service. Even with the prix-fixed lunch, the staff will shower you with generosity and make your wife feel special. The food might not be in the class of L'Ambroisie or L'Arpege but as PhilD stated, it is good enough. The champagne cart and wine list are extraordinary. So is the cheese cart that comes with the prix-fixed lunch. Wines are expensive in in all the top Parisien restaurant. It is a total experience you are after. It is my favorite place in Paris for a splurge lunch when I want to feel special. Ask if they would seat you in one of the banquettes with windows facing the Jardin du Palais Royal

      9 Replies
      1. re: PBSF

        Of the three LGV would be my choice as well. As PBSF said it may be the finest cheese course currently available in Paris. Ask for Colette's table, a large two top almost at the Jardin. The room and service are memorable.

        1. re: Delucacheesemonger

          Absolutely. Le Grand VĂ©four is an attainment.

        2. re: PBSF

          LGV for sure. AND -- afterwards you can buy her a vintage designer dress at one of the great shops in the courtyard of the Palais Royale. Didier Ludot on one side and La Petite Robe Noir on the other.

          1. re: PBSF

            The reason for the question was that she really doesn't know much about the dining scene in Paris. She relies on me to do the research because I am interested in it and she isnt really.
            She does know of LGV because of a 3 part television series on the Ovation channel entitled, "Paris". I know she would enjoy it and think it was very special, however, I think she would think of JV and LTD the same way. I was just curious what you all would do if you were in the same scenario.
            I do understand that you would think it is a silly question given the fact that she knows about LGV and would like to go. But I feel like I haven't done my job if I don't do my research on Chowhound.

            1. re: naughtyb

              To your wife, LGV might be the same as Frenchie to you. You stated that she has always wanted to go there. It doesn't matter what the alternative you come up with.

                1. re: PBSF

                  Good point PBSF. In the end, I guess it may mean more to her that it is LGV even if another place offers better food/ view/ service.

                  1. re: naughtyb

                    One last question on this topic. So since LGV is the choice, would it be better to call or have the concierge call if I want to get Colette's table or do you think my request would be accepted if I made the reservation online?? Thank all of you for being so helpful.

                    1. re: naughtyb

                      We have an apartment and also I cannot afford to stay in hotels such as George V, Ritz, Crillon where the concierge has a lot of pull, I have no experience with such service. From personal experience, it is always better to telephone than email. You can use your all your charm to ask for any special requests. When the French say. 'ce n'est pas possible', it is never final. With charm and a sense of humor, it can be possible. Some years ago, I got Pierre Gagnaire to set up a table in the foyer when their dining room was completely booked by speaking with the captain. For the top restaurants, there is never problem with English. As for Colette's Table at LGV, it is more for history because it has a little plaque on the red velvet banquette. It is a nice table but the best tables for view of the dining room and the jardin are the two corner banquettes at the far end of the room facing the garden. A comment about the tables,because the interior of the restaurant is disignated as a French historial site and cannot be altered, the tables are a bit tight compare with other top restaurants. It doesn't offer a lot of privacy but it has a warm and cozy feel. It is a beautiful place for lunch, right in the center of Paris with all its history.