It happens every Spring. I can count on it. Friends and acquaintances start sending me emails asking for recommendations for where to eat in Paris.We like Paris, try to get there every other year, and so it is a natural we get requests.
But it is hard for me for me to make suggestions. A restaurant I love is probably not one someone else will like…..and yikes, there are so many restaurants in Paris. Where to begin?
But I decided to make a stab at it….listing a few favs and a couple of comments.
1. I recommend a couple of books I look to for information about food in Paris.
First, my favorite guide book is the “The Unofficial Guide to Paris”by David Applefield. I haven’t tested his restaurant recommendations but I think the advice about dining in Paris is terrific. Worth the price of the book. It’s important to learn and follow the foodie rules in the City of Light.
2. The other book I recommend is “Clothide’s Edible Adventures in Paris” by Clotilde Duseulier —If you like food, you’ll enjoy the side bars and the recommendations. Click here for her web site.
3. I love Le Petite Zinc in the 6th ARR. I don’t love it so much for the food, although it is fine. I love decor. It is authentic Art Nouveaux. This style of design was prevalent around the turn of the century in Paris. Most of the Metro stations are Art Nouveaux Style.
4. For a blast from the past go to La Coupole in the 14th ARR. This and the other cafes on this street are ones Hemingway, Fitzgerald and those guys hung out in during the 20s. Click here for more about this area.
5. I like restaurants with a view. If you’d like to dine with view of Paris, try Les Ombres on the top of the Branley Museum with great view of the Eiffle Tower, George’s on the top of Pompidou and Le Zyriab on the top Arab World Institute. Do make reservations for all three.
6. A charming spot right on the Left Bank is Les Bouquinistes, a Guy Savoy restaurant. (left bank). We enjoyed going there after attending a concert at Saint Chapelle. (see two blog posts about these concerts….it’s really my favorite thing to do in Paris).
7. Mostly though, I like to wander into little cafes and Bistros and enjoy authentic French Food. As long as you avoid any establishment with the menu in multiple languages you are probably going to be fine. Also, look for the chalk board. If they don’t have a chalk board with the specials of the day–indicating that the chef is on his or her game, getting the freshest ingredients you’ll be ok. Stay away from eating on Champs-Élysées or anyplace with huge buses parked near by.
9. You usually can find good stuff to eat on Market streets. These are two or three block streets, typically pedestrian, devoted to food. We’ve had good experiences on Rue Cler, Rue Mouffetard and Rue Montorgueil. Also look for Le Marche Les Enfants in the Marais.
9. I love the Art Deco period. If you know of a restaurant, cafe or bistro decorated in this aesthetic, let me know. I’m always on the hunt for a wonderful new spot. Or please add your favorite Paris restaurant to the comment section for our blog readers to enjoy. Thank you.