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Aug 6, 2013 05:08 AM

Two old foodies coming to Paris with our vegetarian, no GMO will cross my lips daughter

It could be worse, her daughter is Vegan.
I have narrowed down the list and would so much appreciate your feedback.
We will be in Paris for two weeks.
Which of the following restaurants should we avoid?
no liquor of any kind.
Eats only organic food at home, and breakfast consists of a green drink, made from spinich kale bananas, etc
We will inform the restaurant in advance.
We are avoiding some of our favorite Brasseries, and L'Ambroisie is out as she thinks that the price is "obscene"
She is probably correct, but she is not a foodie and would never understand.

La Veraison
Les Papilles
Dans Les Landes
Y'am Tha (we have not been)
Chez L'ami Jean
Maceo (safe, we have not been)
Pirouette (we have not been)
Spring (if we can get a reservation??)
Bistrot Paul Bert

We want one grand veggie experience for her at lunch.
set price menu if possible.
I am aware that L'Arpege would be a logical choice.
I am not fond of L'Arpege for many reasons (once did a rant on this board) and the room is not even a little special.

La Grande Cascade
Le Cinq
Verjus (not been)

Would appreciate any suggestions or additions

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  1. I'm sorry, but I wouldn't be planning all my meals in Paris of all places around someone with such restrictive requirements. Has she traveled in Europe before? I think she will find far more acceptable food than you are anticipating.

    My first bit of advice would be to rent an apartment rather than stay in a hotel. There are beaucoup de shops where green drinks are available, and far easier to find than in restaurants or cafes unless you are near the Sorbonne.

    Maceo is one of my favorite places in Paris, and they always have a vegetarian (can be vegan) prix fixe option on their menu as well as other menu items that she may find to her liking.

    7 Replies
    1. re: ChefJune

      possibly I didn't describe my thoughts clearly.
      I am not certain which restaurants are very friendly to Vegetarians, but will satisfy carnivores as well..
      Maceo is a given as per your suggestion, chef June.
      My daughter was sent to school in France, but that was many years ago, and she was just a vegetarian at the time.
      We are staying at The Grand Hotel Intercontinental.
      She is willing to compromise .
      Also I would appreciate a 2 or 3 star which will accommodate her needs graciously.

      1. re: erly

        I'm not very familiar with the neighborhood where you are staying. I hope Souphie will come along and chime in. He knows the city like the back of his hand. Or John T.

        1. re: ChefJune

          It is the old Grand Hotel next to the Opéra Garnier;

          1. re: Parigi

            Le Grand Hotel Intercontinental with a view of the Opera.
            We have been staying there for more years than I can remember.

            and nothing chow worthy nearby.

            1. re: erly

              Chow worthy = Bistro Volnay and Goust (both on the rue Volney) and Les Jalles on the rue (not boulevard) des Capucines... all less than a 5-min walk from Le Grand.

              1. re: Parnassien

                "Chow worthy = Bistro Volnay and Goust (both on the rue Volney) and Les Jalles"
                There we go; but I'd rec Volnay or Les Jalles over Goust despite the rave reviews of the latter, both run by the most fab women host-types in town. Great chow in what I admit is a dicey part of town. Dicey not because its not posh but because good eats are few and far between. Jewels there my dear.

          2. re: ChefJune

            "Souphie will come along and chime in. He knows the city like the back of his hand. Or John T."
            Or our culinary GPS Parnassien - let's listen in.

      2. Use your concierge to telephone your selected restaurants to verify if they can comply with your daughter's requirements. So few (if any) of us Paris Chowhounders are vegetarians that it's a struggle to be helpful. All I can provide are random thoughts.

        Just because they are so near your hotel, maybe you can make a visit to Les Jalles on the rue Capucines, Goust on the rue Volney, and Bistro Volnay on the rue Volney to check them out and explain the veggie angle before you make a rezzie. Usually no need to book a table weeks in advance at either... just a day or two will do.

        At a business lunch at Guy Savoy with an Indian client, they quite successfully accommodated his Hindu dietary restrictions. But we gave the restaurant advance warning.

        I've noticed that Les 110 du Taillevent on the rue Faubourg Saint-Honoré usually has two or 3 veggie starters and these, I suppose, could be contrived into a full meal. And I've also seen neighbouring tables of Indians noshing on what seemed vegetarian fare at Le Cinq in the Hotel George V in the 8th.

        I used to live in the 17th and remember a delightful luberonais restaurant, le Patio Provençal on the rue des Dames just off the rue des Lévis, that specializes in bio and largely vegetarian cuisine. Not only a place for a good light lunch that might suit all 3 of you, but an opportunity to explore the rue des Lévis, a buzzy and very enjoyable "rue commerçante"/ market street for a sample of real-life Paris before lunch (not after because it slows down for the lunch hiatus from 1 to 3:30 or 4pm). Direct métro from Opéra to Villiers but taxi would be even better because you get to see Paris on the way.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Parnassien

          Le Cinq can indeed arrange for a vegetarian tasting. When I went, they put together menu specifically for my wife who's an ovo-lacto vegetarian while I had the normal tasting menu for dinner. It did take a couple rounds of correspondence as fish kept ending up on the menus they proposed for her though. I think the final menu ended up being fully vegan.

          At other places in Paris, Provence and Italy, we've always found restaurants to be very accommodating (meaning more bistro-level to upscale, but not 2/3* places) and have been able to put together respectable vegetarian dishes on the fly though we try to give warning if possible. For the top level places, we've always notified the restaurant in advance of the restrictions and had no issues though one 3* in Italy wasn't prepared for us to order the larger tasting menu so they could not match a veggie course for course with the normal menu so it may be beneficial to note what menu you're likely to order.

          My strategy is just to just plan where I think sounds good or want to eat and only make concessions to my wife being a vegetarian in circumstances where it's obvious that she won't be well looked after- specialty seafood restaurants, steakhouses, more classic places like Rostang in Paris, the entire country of Spain (sigh) etc.

          1. re: michaelstl

            It was many years ago, but Le Cinq (as well as Taillevent) did a great job of accommodating the vegetarian daughter of the couple were were traveling with. Although we still joke about "surely you eat shrimp" ....