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Hack my Paris Trip!

t
Thanksformutton Apr 2, 2014 12:37 PM

So after doing my due diligence, here's my plan for an upcoming Paris trip in April. The background is I'm going with my wife, and my mom, who will be celebrating her 80th birthday Easter Sunday. None of us have been to Paris recently, so we will be on the tourist trail (so I’d like to get off it for meals at least). I wanted to get a diverse range of styles and neighborhoods, and I’m not sure I have achieved that, so please let me know your suggestions. Any interesting neighborhoods that I am neglecting that I should not miss? Any places that would be totally uncomfortable for a fairly young 80-year old?

Friday diner: Terroir Parisian Bourse, which is around the corner from our apartment.

Sat. lunch: Semilla, (6th)

Sat diner at our apartment.

Sunday marche enfant rouge lunch (3rd)

Sunday night birthday dinner at 110 taillevent (8th) any Recs for an apertif with a view of the Arc or on the champs before dinner?

Monday Katsandwich to go from Abri. (10th)

Monday dinner Pirouette (1st)

Tuesday picnic at Versailles

Tues. Dinner Galopin (11th) is this a fun part of the 11th at night, or should I look elsewhere? Haven't heard many reviews in the past couple of years.

Wednesday lunch at someplace traditional, either Paul Bert, or L'ami Jean?

Wednesday night, we are going to the Louvre, suggestions for something small without reservations around there? maybe just eat left overs from lunch.

Thursday a day trip to Reims or Epernay. Any suggestions as which day trip you prefer, or casual restaurants you recommend in either place.

Thursday night a final dinner at Chez Denise (or Chez Georges?? [or Christophe??].)

Thanks! And I promise to right a trip report!

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  1. John Talbott RE: Thanksformutton Apr 2, 2014 12:54 PM

    Tues. Dinner Galopin (11th) is this a fun part of the 11th at night, or should I look elsewhere? Haven't heard many reviews in the past couple of years.
    Nor me either, but loved it in the past.
    Wednesday lunch at someplace traditional, either Paul Bert, or L'ami Jean? Parigi will weigh in here, but I love all the restos on the Rue Paul Bert.
    Wednesday night, we are going to the Louvre, suggestions for something small without reservations around there? maybe just eat left overs from lunch.
    Actually Le Lulli is not small but is terrific and as Le Marais says, why not reserve altho it's never been fully booked when I've gone. Or cross the River to Les Climats or the Maison de l'Amerique Latin, esp if it's warm as it has been for a year.

    1 Reply
    1. re: John Talbott
      Parigi RE: John Talbott Apr 2, 2014 01:00 PM

      "either Paul Bert, or L'ami Jean? Parigi will weigh in here"
      I would love to but can't.

    2. Parigi RE: Thanksformutton Apr 2, 2014 12:59 PM

      Will you be my travel consultant ?
      All your picks are good. And the pace is good. And you "do" Louvre Wednesday night. All the smart moves.

      Two things:
      1. Don't worry about the area of Le Galopin at night. At 99 lb and 5'4", I walk home from there. Then again I am a scary individual, admittedly.
      2. "Chez Denise (or Chez Georges?? [or Christophe??].)"
      Chez Denise.
      Have a great time.

      11 Replies
      1. re: Parigi
        Parnassien RE: Parigi Apr 2, 2014 03:37 PM

        Le Galopin is actually in the 10th (not the 11th) in an increasingly hip quartier. Not a polished neighbourhood but full of charm and very much on the trendy circuit. The place Sainte Marthe next to Galopin is where the cool kids hang out on Sunday. I usually combine with a walk to or from the Canal Saint-Martin. But if you're coming from near the Bourse, taxi is probably best way to get there and then take an after-dinner stroll to the Canal. And a BTW to others, Le Galopin remains a fab-food place.

        For an apéro on the horrible Champs Elysées, Publicis Drugstore. Or (oh god, don't tell anyone I suggested it) the mega-bucks-tourist-delight café Le Fouquet... be careful to pronounce it correctly... nice terrace ... and you will appear in the photos of 5000 other tourists as they pass by. And, although it probably won't be open on Sunday, the rooftop bar of the Hotel Raphael on the avenue Kléber... one of my favourite places in Paris ... views of both of the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower... but I can never figure out when it's open... the times posted on the Hotel Raphael's website are often unreliable.

        For Versailles, the excellent Marché Notre Dame off the avenue Saint-Cloud is perfect for picking up picnic food and more convenient than lugging the stuff from Paris. And if you time it right, there's a special once-an-hour bus that goes from the rue du Maréchal Foch just next to the Notre Dame market to Les Trianons inside the grounds of the château. And, lots of frequent buses from the Rive-Gauche RER station as well as Versailles other train stations to the Marché Notre Dame (I'm fretting about all that walking for your mom).

        1. re: Parnassien
          t
          Thanksformutton RE: Parnassien Apr 2, 2014 04:54 PM

          Wow the Raphael terrace bar looks exactly what I was looking for. Alas, they are open for easter brunch, but doesn't look like it really opens till May. Any chance that Fouquet makes a good Negroni?

          Thanks for the tips about Versailles. very helpful.

          I picked Galopin because I wanted to check out a trendy/hipster neighborhood, so it sounds like it will fit the bill nicely. Thanks again.

          1. re: Thanksformutton
            ChefJune RE: Thanksformutton Apr 3, 2014 12:53 PM

            I don't think Fouquet's is good for anything save people watching... maybe hot chocolate.

            1. re: ChefJune
              Parigi RE: ChefJune Apr 3, 2014 12:59 PM

              "save people watching"

              I heart you, chère June, but are you out of your mind? Watching the Champs people? The Champs !!!?

              1. re: Parigi
                Parnassien RE: Parigi Apr 3, 2014 02:39 PM

                The OP wants an apéro on the Champs and/or a view of the Arc de T before a birthday dinner at Les 110 de Taillevent. Given the Champs Elysées emblematic status, not an entirely unreasonable request for a tourist. And geez, it's just for drinks... a half hour of Champs Elysées-itis is not going to ruin anybody's life. It certainly wouldn't be my choice of where to go for an apéro with a view... but I'm not a tourist.

                If Chef June and Parigi have suggestions for a roof terrace bar with a view of the Arc de Triomphe and open on Sunday in April, that would be great and probably much appreciated by the OP.

                1. re: Parnassien
                  Parigi RE: Parnassien Apr 3, 2014 02:46 PM

                  I was responding to the "people-watching" reference. I was not talking about watching monuments.
                  In addition, you yourself wrote upthread: "For an apéro on the horrible Champs Elysées, Publicis Drugstore. Or (oh god, don't tell anyone I suggested it)"
                  But it is mildly entertaining to see you so enjoy your contradicting mood that you contradict yourself. Rock out.

                  1. re: Parigi
                    Parnassien RE: Parigi Apr 3, 2014 02:57 PM

                    I'm not contradicting myself... just trying to respond to the OP's request. Like I've said over and over and over in this thread and others, I personally dislike (even loathe) the Champs. But I'm not the OP. And I can at least try to be helpful.

                    1. re: Parnassien
                      Delucacheesemonger RE: Parnassien Apr 4, 2014 11:37 AM

                      Mangeur, her husband and l will be at Au Bon Coin on the 13th of April . If you would like to join, please let me know.
                      Address on my info page.
                      Sorry, no other way to try to contact you.

                      1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                        Parnassien RE: Delucacheesemonger Apr 4, 2014 12:05 PM

                        Just a quickie before Friday night fever carries me off... I can't access the address on your profile... but 13 Apr pas possible ... other dates ?

                        1. re: Parnassien
                          Delucacheesemonger RE: Parnassien Apr 4, 2014 02:00 PM

                          Blog is my eeeemmmmaaaiilll address.
                          Only dates for me/her

                        2. re: Delucacheesemonger
                          John Talbott RE: Delucacheesemonger Apr 4, 2014 12:23 PM

                          Of course at night, right? Or we'd think of it.
                          John

        2. b
          bauskern RE: Thanksformutton Apr 2, 2014 04:16 PM

          My wife and I ate @ Le Galopin last Spring. Seven course dinner [two dessert courses]; reasonably priced; We had to have the kobe steak taken back to the kitchen, but that was because of the huge cultural gap between what Americans and French consider "medium." Once the steak came back, it was delicious. Staff was very friendly. We walked from our apartment to the restaurant via Canal St. Martin, and thought the neighborhood was a little sketchy walking back after dark. A cab seems like a great suggestion. If you care about such things, we were the only English speakers in the restaurant that evening. I thought the value/price ratio was excellent, and would love to go back again for our upcoming trip, but there are just too many other places to try! My wife thought the food was very delicious without being overly fussy. We both thought the squid was incredible. Beware: only one menu for the evening, and the bathroom was downstairs via a steep set of stairs.

          6 Replies
          1. re: bauskern
            mangeur RE: bauskern Apr 3, 2014 02:46 PM

            An aside, on our last visit, we were a little early so we walked down a side street to kill time. Suddenly, DH grabbed my arm and whirled me around. "Run! There's a guy at the end of the block brandishing a butcher knife and yelling." So I did. No problem. No personal danger. Could well have been at home near any of the places we like to dine. But certainly a surprise.

            1. re: mangeur
              Parnassien RE: mangeur Apr 3, 2014 03:22 PM

              A few years ago, I read in one of the French newspapers that French tourists are 10 times more likely to be the victims of crime in the USA than American tourists in France. If true, it's kinda ironic that Americans worry about "sketchy" neighbourhoods in Paris. And incidentally, violent crime rates in Paris (population 2.5 million) compare favourably with San Francisco (pop 825,000).

              1. re: Parnassien
                mangeur RE: Parnassien Apr 3, 2014 03:29 PM

                I think that the numbers might be similar but the rate (ratio crime/pop) would indicate far more violent crime in SF than in Paris. In Paris, we have never felt vulnerable to street crime against the person. The guy in my incident was someone temporarily off his rocker with a personal grudge against someone he knew. That could happen anywhere. To reiterate, we were never in danger, but it was a surprise.

                1. re: mangeur
                  Parnassien RE: mangeur Apr 3, 2014 03:56 PM

                  Indeed. I've lived most of my 36 years in Paris and no direct experience of crime (at least intra-muros... forays into the suburbs are a different story). My sister did have her plate of food snatched off an outside table on the rue des Abbesses... but I'm not counting that. But in just one year of living in SF, I was mugged (by a guy with a gun!) on Potrero Hill (foodie context for mods: on my way to meet someone at Chez Papa) and threatened with a knife by a would-be thief at an ATM on Fell.

                  1. re: Parnassien
                    mangeur RE: Parnassien Apr 3, 2014 06:18 PM

                    At home, I've been held at gunpoint in a Safeway (ironic) grocery, and our young adult son robbed at gunpoint in the doorway of his girlfriend's apartment.

                2. re: Parnassien
                  Parigi RE: Parnassien Apr 3, 2014 03:39 PM

                  The nature of the crime is very different
                  In US cities, there is much more violent crime.
                  In French cities like Paris, Nice, etc., the criminal issue is mainly petty crime, like pick-pocket and minor scam.

            2. t
              Thanksformutton RE: Thanksformutton Apr 3, 2014 06:34 PM

              Not to take the conversation away from gun violence(!), but

              I am starting to have second thoughts about Semilla. The original plan was to tourist it up in the 7th in the morning, snap some pictures at the Eiffel tower, etc., then go to Chez L'ami Jean for lunch and walk it off in Orsay in the afternoon. However, CLJ is closed that week, so I plugged in Semilla. but looking on the map, its sort of out of the way, and while it looks good, doesn't necessarily seem worth getting in a taxi if there are comparable places around that are more convenient.

              Would like to keep it casual and under say 35 E a person (not including wine), so no Climats or La Maison de l'Amerique Latine. Any ideas?

              4 Replies
              1. re: Thanksformutton
                PhilD RE: Thanksformutton Apr 3, 2014 08:38 PM

                Semilla is only a few minutes further on than Climats or La Maison de l'Amerique Latine. Simply get a bus from the Eiffel Tower #69 and get off at rue du bad then stroll through the back streets to Semilla, its a short stroll back to the Musee D'Orsay.

                €35 per head in this area does seem a little light another option could be Cinq-Mars on rue de Verneuil.

                1. re: PhilD
                  PhilD RE: PhilD Apr 4, 2014 01:05 AM

                  Rue du Bad should be Rue du Bac.

                  Its not one of the mean streets of the 7eme - the only danger* is getting run over by a tartan shopping trolly piloted by one of the grand dames of the quarter.

                  * Apart from the CRS protecting the Hotel Matignon during the annual riot season.

                2. re: Thanksformutton
                  Parnassien RE: Thanksformutton Apr 4, 2014 12:30 AM

                  No problem. Semilla, like 99.9% restaurants in Paris, is easily replaceable by another of the same or better quality. In fact too many choices. Let's start with Le 122 on the rue de Grenelle... lunch "formule" for under 20 € ... great food... less than 10 min walk from the Orsay.... half hour stroll from the Eiffel Tower (but much more clever to take the #69 from the Champ de Mars). Or Chez Graffe on the rue Bellechasse @ rue Dominique ...25 € lunch menu ... again, less than 10 min-walk to Orsay and, from the Eiffel Tower, 30 mins by foot or 8 mins by #69 bus + 5-min walk. Or Garance on the rue Saint-Dominique ... lunch for 35 € (food only) so probably a budget buster but the food is soooo good... 5 mins to Orsay... and the stop for #69 bus from Champ de Mars just steps away. Or for a not-bad tourist experience, the very trad La Frégate on the rue du Bac/ quai Voltaire .... lunch "formules" for 20 € or €30 depending on appetite... not life-changing food but decent enough... and a view of the river, Tuileries and Louvre... and once again, the good ole #69 bus drops you off less than 50 metres from the resto. Or Bistro Belhara (basque cuisine). Or La Laiterie Sainte Clothilde. Or Cinq Mars. Or ...etc etc.

                  And apologies for the crime diversion. The litter from off-topic detours is certainly messy but is a fun part of the vibrant landscape of the Paris board.

                  1. re: Parnassien
                    t
                    Thanksformutton RE: Parnassien Apr 4, 2014 10:09 AM

                    Thanks for all the options, and no problem about going off topic, I was just being selfish. I imagine for the regulars on the board, distractions from validating tourists' itineraries are welcome! Cheers.

                3. Delucacheesemonger RE: Thanksformutton Apr 4, 2014 11:35 AM

                  As this part of your question was not answered, the Champagne part l will address this. Was in Reims today and had lunch at Les Crayeres, weekly lunch special at 69 euros.
                  Was it great , no. Was it worth it, yes, just to see the fabulous grounds and relax it was wonderful. We made the res at the last minute so could not get admission to Assiete Champenoise which l would have preferred. They also have a 60-70 euro inch on weekdays.
                  Go to Assiete but reserve early.
                  These are a ** and a *** at not too terrible a tariff, give one a try.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                    souphie RE: Delucacheesemonger Apr 5, 2014 06:33 AM

                    I don't know, the food was pretty great at Crayeres. That duck like a lievre a la royale business was pretty briiliant, though it would have been a reasonable dish with double the quantity. The asparagus risotto was impeccable, slightly original with its local cheese. And the peer soufflé dessert was masterful.

                    1. re: souphie
                      Delucacheesemonger RE: souphie Apr 5, 2014 06:56 AM

                      That duck like a lievre a la royale business was pretty briiliant, though it would have been a reasonable dish with double the quantity.

                      DOUBLE THE QUANTITY AND HALF THE SALT.

                      The asparagus risotto was impeccable, slightly original with its local cheese.

                      YES IT WAS, ALL THREE TABLESPOONS OF IT.

                      And the peer soufflé dessert was masterful.

                      FOR ME THE PEAR SOUFFLE WAS THE HIGHLIGHT

                      1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                        p
                        Ptipois RE: Delucacheesemonger Apr 5, 2014 07:48 AM

                        Sounds like someone didn't enjoy it quite as much as you did.

                      2. re: souphie
                        ChefJune RE: souphie Apr 7, 2014 02:40 PM

                        The food at Assiette is more inventive than at Les Crayeres. Both good. Reserve early for lunch at Assiette. You won't be sorry.

                        1. re: ChefJune
                          t
                          Thanksformutton RE: ChefJune Apr 7, 2014 04:12 PM

                          Delucacheesemonger's CAPSLOCK takedown on LC sold me on Assiette, so we have booked there, and are really looking forward to it.

                          Rec's on a cave tour/tasting? I have heard Ruinart and Tattinger are good. Any others?

                          1. re: Thanksformutton
                            ChefJune RE: Thanksformutton Apr 8, 2014 08:49 AM

                            Pommery may not have the best Champagne, but they surely have a spectacular tour. and if you've read the book, "Champagne," by Don & Petie Kladstrup beforehand, it will take on new meaning, historically.

                            1. re: ChefJune
                              Delucacheesemonger RE: ChefJune Apr 8, 2014 09:13 AM

                              And what a property !
                              There might be money in selling Champagne !

                    2. t
                      Thanksformutton RE: Thanksformutton May 5, 2014 10:16 AM

                      Long and boring trip report without accent marks ahead.

                      TL/DR version: We ate well.

                      Arrived Friday around one pm hungry and in a post-Ambien fugue state, so we strolled around the hood to get our bearings. We were overwhelmed by the lunch crowd a Frenchie-To-Go, so we ended up with some microwaved quiche and a long over due glass of wine at an anonymous café with a nice view of the action on Rue Montorgueil. This ain’t so bad, so we are off to a pretty good start.

                      Terroir Parisian Bourse—our first dinner Friday night and it was a good introduction to Paris—traditional dishes but in a modern vernacular, in a handsome, well financed room. We shared a charcuterie plate, a much larger platter than I am used to back in SF. Terrine en croute, ham, chicken liver pate, rillettes, saucisson… Had some of the finest boudin noir I can remember, a large crispy disc… a cote du boeuf special had a really nice beefy intensity, but maybe a touch under seasoned, and mom loved her lieu jaune. The tarte tatin was insanely good, and the ille flottante was decent (I wouldn’t trust my judgment on this— I’ve never had one before.) The people sitting next to us made me jealous with a delicious looking artichoke dish as well. (186€ for 3 with wine and coffee.)

                      Semilla—Saturday lunch. After fighting through the crowds at the Eiffel Tower, and girding ourselves for the crowds we would join at Van Gogh exhibit (which was too crowded to love, but still wonderful to see) this place was a nice little oasis. The only English I heard was from our English waitress. The room is bright with a feminine cool. A trio of entrees included veloute of broccoli and mint, a broccoli muffin and roasted carrot salad, which showed off their touch with vegetables. Two of us had a really nice monkfish with celery root puree, and and one loved her roast beef with mushrooms and onions. We split an almond cake with orange blossom ice cream and lemon cream desert. Charming place.

                      Digression—it was such a huge plus staying a block away from Rue du Nil and Rue Montorqueil. Got an incredible leg of spring lamb from Terroirs d’Avenir for dinner at home Saturday night. Must have been a cute little guy, as it was the tiniest little lamb leg I’ve seen. The bro’s at La Fermette were really helpful every time we went there for some cheese. We dug the croissants and bread at Regis Colin and Maison Collet over the other bakeries, although we didn’t try them all. Drip coffee at Lockwood was stellar (shout out to Lloyd, their cool aussie barista). It’s a great little hood that seemed close to everywhere we were going.

                      Sunday, after standing lock kneed through the Easter Mass at Notre Dame (while being pushed around by rude amateur photographers) we took advantage of a free afternoon and headed over to Rue Bretagne in the haut marais. Originally wanted to go to the marche des enfants rouge for lunch, but the Moms was tired after being on her feet all morning, so we opted for a more traditional brunch at Café Charlot. The food was meh, maybe a touch worse then meh, but we really enjoyed gawking at the scene. Lots of good looking people on a nice sunny day is always fun. Are these the bobo’s I’ve heard about? I’d get the burger if I had it to do over. Also made it by Jacques Genin to pick up some gifts. Not being a sweets connoisseur, I was blown away by how fancy a candy store can be. Anyway, a fun neighborhood that would be a good place to stay.

                      110 Taillevent. Sunday dinner for the quatre-vingtième anniversaire de ma mere. First, the wine by the glass program is novel, diner-friendly and well priced. I thought the serrated section on the placemat for take away wine-tasting notes was taking the theme a bit far, an off note for an elegant place, but a minor nit. We went a la carte and my foie gras mi cuit was wonderful and huge. My mom’s ravioles stuffed with langoustines looked great (she didn’t share!), and Trish said she preferred the pea veloute here to the broccoli veloute at Semilla. I disagreed. Trish has a lovely chicken breast… great as far as a chicken breast can be great. Mom won out with a vol au vent with thick cream sauce, sweat breads and assorted meat treasure. But my big problem was that my steak tartar (two cold dishes? That was kind of dumb of me) was absolutely and totally dominated by cornichons. Tasted like a big spoonful of sweet relish. 110 redeemed itself with a cool chocolate sphere that melted when they poured hot chocolate sauce on it to reveal some tiramisu-like inspired goodness inside and some chocolate mousse with a birthday candle. The service was fine, if not uber polished for the price point. 295€ for three with the wine mostly staying on the left (cheaper) side of the menu. My mom and Trish liked it better than I did, but perhaps my opinion was tarnished by my one disappointing dish and my poor ordering.

                      Cantine de le Cigale. Monday saw us on the petit train to Sacre Couer and the tourist streets on Montmartre, which my mom absolutely loved, making me wonder to where I came from. Did not want to end up at a café on the place du tetre (we did get a drink at a café up there--I’m not that bad of a son) so we ended up at Cantine de la Cigale. This place was so friendly and generous that I think my mom forgave me for being a snobby jerk. We tried to order light because we had dinner reservations, but failed miserably: crispy pig ears (so good, so large), raw scallops, great great french fries, “the best cod I’ve ever had” for mom, asparagus salad with cured ham, foie gras soup, mushroom soup. All just top notch and well priced. Loved this place, its got a lot of soul, especially if your into the sports bar look. Cool waitress too.

                      Pirouette. This one is one of my favorites of the trip, and I would go back again in an instant. Pirouette had a good energy in a warm urban-feeling space. When we first arrived, our waiter wanted to seat us upstairs, but upon our request, quickly changed our table to one that did not require my mom to climb a spiral staircase, no hesitation or attitude about it. The good service from our expressive waiter continued through the meal. I started with octopus tempura, fantastic, but my ris au veau with beef cheeks on the side was one of the best dishes of the whole trip. Loved my rice pudding with caramel sauce. My mom had some beef or lamb, the mind fails. Tricia had an battered ouef parfait, and some delicious pork, shoulder, I believe. Everything was stellar except one desert, a sheep’s milk cheese with a black cherry confiture that we just didn’t understand. But who cares, great meal, great wine, we left very happy. (167€ for three with wine and coffee and well worth it.)

                      Galopin. This place had the casual cool thing down pat. The little square it was on at dusk sets the mood. It’s one of those places that has jettisoned all of the accouterments of fine dining to focus exclusively on presenting pristine seasonal ingredients in their best light. Fixed menu of 7 courses with waiters in jeans and t-shirts in cramped but friendly quarters. We sat at the table under the pass through, so got to check out the action in the small kitchen a little. Feta and fava bean amuse bouche, then lamb bouillon. Seared rare/raw beef with asparagus and cucumber continued the early spring flavers. Very fresh marble daurade with kumquats and a couple of clams to keep it interesting, followed by iberico pork with wild garlic and peas. Apples in tamarind and a citrus sesame dessert that I don’t quite recall finished us off. This place would kill it in the hipper parts of SF or Oakland, although then everyone who worked there would be covered in tattoos (tattoos haven’t hit here, huh?) 49€ per person plus wine and coffee. Highly recommended. Walked by tetes dans les olives on the way out, and made a mental note for next time, cause it looked like everyone was having a good time in there.

                      Chez Denise. Lunch. Holy portion size, made a tear come to this American boy’s eye. We wanted at least one real carnivore’s meal, and that’s what we got. Escargot, two big slabs each of terrine du poissons in a cream sauce and chicken liver (I think) rustic terrine, followed by two monster hangar steaks for the ladies and foie de veau for me. So much better than any calves’ liver I’ve ever had (mostly at greasy spoons) and pomme frites of course. And a large bottle of their respectable house wine. And chocolate mousse. Totally over ate. I do feel like we missed out on the experience of the place by going at lunch however. It was half empty at 1:30. I would have loved to eaten here at 11 on a Friday night with a bunch of friends. I liked this better than the ladies. Plenty of leftovers.

                      L’Assiete Champenoise (Reims). I owe the board, specifically delucacheesemonger and ChefJune big time for this recommendation and push to try this, it was a real highlight of the trip. It was a gorgeous spring day, so we started off on the back deck with a nice glass of champagne and a trio of amuse bouches, lounging on their comfortable modern patio furniture. They take down your menu selection (the Saison menu at 69€ and wine choice out there (Pol Roger brut). A couple more amuse bouches, then and entrée of foie gras terrine with a foie gras cream and apple and lemon, very refined, generously portioned, followed by breast of squab with some delicate pasta stuffed with thigh meat and radish shavings. Just tremendously tender. The Cheese course was then followed by desserts simply called citron, chocolat and caramel (the specific of which are escaping me right now, but they were great!) followed by cookies and candy. Then we returned to the patio for coffee. The dining room is modern and clean, but still manages to retain some character. The service was both precise and exceedingly friendly to us, and we had a couple of nice conversations with different staffers. They treated us like royalty even though we didn’t opt for the tasting menu. And the crowd was a nice mix of expense accounts, families and couples. Everyone seemed to be having a fine time, as did we. For anyone in Paris for a week or more, I highly recommend a day trip to Reims. We rented a car, drove through the brightest mustard fields ever, toured some limestone caves that date to Roman times (where I learned that I’ve been mispronouncing Taittinger for years,) had the above lunch, toured the cathedral, and were back in Paris before dark. Good times.

                      That night, our last, Tricia and I snuck out and had some cocktails at Lockwood. They feature a lot of amaros and make a solid negroni.
                      Then stopped by Frenchie’s Bar et Vin for some wine and a small bite to eat. Regretted not going to a full diner here as soon as I walked in, but not sure the maternal unit would have dug the high stools, so probably for the best. Great wine list and they have a couple of Pappy Van Winkles for you bourbon trophy hunters.

                      Really tough to rank them, as we were one soggy quiche and a handful of relish away from having a dud-free trip, but based on not just the food, but on the vagaries of my subjective experience:

                      1. L’Assiete Champonaise
                      2. Pirouette
                      3. Galopin
                      4. Semilla*
                      5. Terroir Parisan Bourse
                      6. Cantine de la Cigale
                      7. Chez Denise (safe to assume this would be higher if we went at another time)
                      8. Café Charlot
                      9. 110 Taillevent

                      * 4, 5 & 6 are basically a tie.

                      Thanks to all for making it so easy and enjoyable to research this trip. Can’t wait for our next one.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: Thanksformutton
                        d
                        dogood RE: Thanksformutton May 5, 2014 10:30 AM

                        Not Boring! Very amusing and informative and now I know where our day trip from Paris will be.

                        1. re: Thanksformutton
                          Parigi RE: Thanksformutton May 5, 2014 11:03 AM

                          Whoa ! You did well. Bravo.
                          Just one thing: how can you make it to Café Charlot (where, excuse me, you deserve to eat badly) and not to the marché Enfants Rouges (where you would have of course eaten better)?
                          Bravo again. And thank you for the long, informative report.

                          1. re: Parigi
                            t
                            Thanksformutton RE: Parigi May 5, 2014 11:24 AM

                            I know, I know. But at that point in the day, my mom was more concerned about a comfy chair and waiter service than culinary exploration. Can't win 'em all.

                            1. re: Thanksformutton
                              Parigi RE: Thanksformutton May 5, 2014 11:28 AM

                              Seriously, you did well.

                              1. re: Parigi
                                t
                                Thanksformutton RE: Parigi May 5, 2014 11:36 AM

                                We had a blast. Thanks for your help.

                          2. re: Thanksformutton
                            ChefJune RE: Thanksformutton May 5, 2014 11:07 AM

                            I'm so glad you loved Assiette Champenoise. I'll be back in Reims in October and am looking forward to another fine meal there. I was sure Lallement hadn't slipped, or he wouldn't have (finally!) gotten his 3rd star. :D

                            1. re: ChefJune
                              t
                              Thanksformutton RE: ChefJune May 5, 2014 11:25 AM

                              Thanks again ChefJune. After lunch, Lallemont was out back smoking a cigar with some of his buddies. Seems like a nice humble guy.

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