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Dec 18, 2012 09:13 PM

The Countdown has begun - Paris, Bordeaux

Hi Hounds

We are leaving Australia on Friday so not much time to change our minds but we would appreciate the benefit of your collective wisdom on our restaurant plan. I have booked a meal for all bar 3 days!

Sat : Arr 09.40, Staying in the 7th, no meal booked Jetlag?? Maybe Cafe Constant for lunch.
Sun: Flea Markets in morning. No meal booked. Hope to get in to Comptoir Du Relais. Sunday so no reservations required, right?
Mon: Xmas Eve: Lunch: Taillevant (Ballet at night)
Tues: Xmas: Lunch: Le Violin D'Ingres
Wed: Dinner: Spring
Thurs: Lunch: Jules Verne
Fri: Plan on spending day in Versaille, no meal booked.
Sat: TGV to Bordeaux (Grand Hotel): Dinner: Le Pressoir D'Argent
Sun: (Market Quais Chatron in morning) Dinner: Solena
Mon: NYE: St Emillion daytrip: Dinner: Le Pavillion Des Boulevards
Tues: Arcachon daytrip: nothing booked, maybe La Cave de Bigoudy?
Wed: Medoc daytrip: Dinner: La Tupina
Thurs: TGV to Paris: Staying 6th: Dinner Chez L'Ami Jean
Fri: Lunch: Guy Savoy (internet deal); Dinner: Frenchie [Hey, its our last day!]
Sat: Lunch: Le Cinq; Depart for Oz.

OK. What do you think? We plan on eating light for the other meals. We will probably stock up at Le Grande Epicurie.


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  1. That sounds like a lovely program.

    In Bordeaux you could probably squeeze in a nice entrecôte-frites at La Brasserie Bordelaise for lunch, and if you have a car, take a trip to Arcins and eat at Le Lion d'Or - perhaps on Wednesday since it's your Médoc daytrip. Highly recommended.

    Are you going to do some château tastings in Médoc?

    9 Replies
    1. re: Ptipois

      Thankyou Ptipois. On our daytrips in Bordeaux we are in the hands of personal guides. I will put your recommendation to him. At this stage he has just said lunch in Margaux or Saint-Julien. Are these near Arcins? We will be visiting Chateau Cantanec Brown, Chateau Pontet Canet, and Chateau La Grange. As it will be 2 Jan, we are told, not may are open.

      1. re: geepers

        Arcins is just North of Margaux. There isn't a lot of options: La brasserie du Golf, le Relais de Margaux, le Lion d'Or in Arcins. Only Le Lion d'Or is really interesting. I'd travel to the Bordeaux region just for it.

        Cantenac-Brown is a good margaux and the château looks impressive, there's a beautiful park too and a couple of swans named Charles and Camilla.

        Pontet-Canet is in my opinion one of the most interesting châteaux because of the use of biodynamy on a classified growth vineyard (the only example, with Climens in Barsac). It is also a gorgeous, atmospheric place.

        Château Lagrange is a very nice estate, the largest of all crus classés in Médoc. Lovely tasting facilities. If you have a chance, grab one or two bottles of their white wine, les Arums de Lagrange.

      2. re: Ptipois

        I fully agree; nice plan.
        As for "Fri: Plan on spending day in Versaille, no meal booked" as I keep looking for good places in Versailles and except for the less expensive Gordon Ramsey place, have never wanted to go back to any.

        1. re: John Talbott

          OK. We will probably picnic at Versailles and have dinner back in Paris. We are staying in a small hotel in Rue San Dominique, Hotel Thoumieux. Has anyone eaten in either of the restaurants there?

          1. re: geepers

            Thoumieux is now part of the Costes empire but I daresay the food is okay. Especially at the brasserie downstairs, while the upstairs is dedicated to Jean-François Piège's jewelbox of a "gastronomique" restaurant. Some like, some don't. I am not a fan.

            1. re: Ptipois

              I agree - subpar - as my dining partner blogged - "if it's Sunday, you're wealthy, lazy, need a voiturier and work-study coat check person as well as "beautiful," tall, rail-thin, tanned, slit-skirted waitresses, it's better than Bofinger."

              1. re: John Talbott

                Sounds like a "no" to me. There are so many good places in the vicinity it is not worth settling for "subpar",

                1. re: geepers

                  Though I do not think the gastro is worth the wait and money, I do like the brasserie. I had a very nice lunch there soon after it opened.

                  1. re: Ptipois

                    I ate there about the same time Pti and was not blown away downstairs either. Again, not impressed enough to want to return.

      3. Re Medoc. A very fulsome agreement to Ptipois' suggestion of Lion d'Or in Arcins... just a 5-min drive from Margaux... it would be a shame to be so near and miss out on such a glorious example of good-value traditional cuisine made with finesse.

        Re Versailles. Don't count on a picnic in the park. Our winter weather is so unpredictable. Although there are restos/ snack bars inside the grounds of the château, not very good nosh. Browsing the wonderful Marché Notre Dame (one of the best markets in the Paris region...on Fridays, there is also an outside market as well as the covered permanent market) for plats cuisinés would be much more enjoyable... but no later than 12:30 when the market starts its afternoon hiatus. For a good sit-down lunch, the somewhat pricey l'Angélique on the avenue St Cloud... the #1 choice of picky versaillais(es).

        2 Replies
        1. re: Parnassien

          Thank you so much for those Versailles tips. Very useful.

          1. re: geepers

            Agree with Parnassian. My blog, which it's gauche to refer to here, has our last foray into the center of the park to eat. As the old maps used to say: Here Be Dragons.

        2. Geepers,
          I'd probably look at going to La Cagouiolle for lunch on the arrival Saturday (booking online is easy). Seeing as though you are going to Bordeaux you will need to drink some Burgundy before you go and the seafood is excellent.
          Best Regards