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42390

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  1. Well that is an odd time to close but here is another option in the immediate area, Restaurant Hotel Anthon. http://www.restaurant-anthon.fr/tarif.php This one is in Obersteinbach, just a few minutes down the road from Lembach. True the restaurant there is not up to Cheval Blanc standards but is still good, very reasonable prices. Disclaimer - I have only eaten there once and that was in 2004 but would have no problem returning. They do have guest rooms that look quite decent from their website but I have never stayed there. Just throwing it out as an option. It is charming, Obersteinbach is even smaller than Lembach, just a wide spot in the road, calm and tranquil.
  2. Not true about nowhere else good to stay close to l'Arnsbourg. There is a very charming 1 star (used to be 2 star but changed chefs and lost a star)called Auberge du Cheval Blanc in Lembach http://www.au-cheval-blanc.fr/. While Hotel K was just opened in 2006, this place has been around forever but they did add 6 new spa rooms recently. The restaurant is fundamentally different from l'Arnsbourg. Cheval Blanc is more traditional but with very high skill level, l'Arnsbourg is one of the most inventive in France. Of course if you stay there you have no obligation to eat at the restaurant. Lembach is very charming and you will probably need a GPS to find l'Arnsbourg. Also, that stretch of autobahn between about Basel and Essen is always very busy, which is I guess is what you would take to get to Amsterdam, no way you will average 100km per hour through there. Picture of Lembach / Cheval Blanc attached.
  3. yes I did have the club menu. I just made the champagne last through the foie gras. My wife had an entree of artichoke soup and her plat was a fish called lotte du lac, never heard of such a thing before, monkfish from a lake. Anyway, with the club menu you do get paired wines. The wine guy speaks perfect English. He just said all we ordered would be well matched with that Rully so that is the only wine we had other than the champagne. I wish I had written down all the wine options from the club menu but did not, I can tell you they are offering very decent selections. So yes the total price was 94.5 x 2 =189e for two 3 course menus, two champagnes, one bottle of Rully 1er cru, 2 or 3 bottles of Badoit, two coffees, I think the best deal ever in Paris high end dining and I have been to a bunch of the starred places. Here is a picture of the quenelle and the mignardises and some other things from that day.
  4. I ate there for the first time in December 2009, it is really, really good. In addition to the 79e menu you are talking about they have another lunch option called the menu club, 94.5e, which is same as the 79e menu but includes aperitif, wines matched per course, water and coffee. You will be blown away by the combination of value, hospitality, and excellence of cooking. Unlike some of the other multi stars in Paris which are palace like in decor, Rostang is like eating at a good friend's tastefully appointed, luxurious yet very unpretentious town home. As for dress, I wore wool dress pants, dress shirt, tie, blazer. They seem to do a very brisk business lunch business and this style mixed in perfectly, but I have no aversion to ties and such and always dress so for good restaurants. Having said that, there were a few present that were kind of slouchy looking and everyone received the same level of service regardless of dress. In fact, as we were starting desert one particularly frumpy looking guy came in, took the table next to ours and ordered nothing but Rostang's famous truffle sandwich (85e) and a glass of wine. Rostang came out and sat with this guy for a really long time. Some of the cooking is old style, especially the quenelle, still showing on the online menu last I looked, which is straight out of Escoffier, and a true delight. In fact, I will give you a run down of the whole thing: 1. Champagne to start 2. 3 amuse bouche, small slice of dried sausage with pistachio, a small fried fish ball of some sort, and a little foie gras thing 3. Another soup amuse which was terrific, a play on both words and presentation, called a creme de celeri comme un noisette, looked like one of the coffees they call a noisette in France, espresso with a small dollop of creme floating on top, only this one was celery root puree with a foamy top, looked just like the coffee noisette. 4. A thing called presse d'foie gras et artichaut which was sooooooooo good, a good size rectangle of alternating layers of foie gras and artichoke puree, the top layer was artichoke jelly, served with one whole nicely trimmed and cooked artichoke stuffed with a fine dice of carrot, turnip, etc, all sauced with some meat juice. 5. La Quenelle de Brochet soufflée à la Crème de Homard - Straight out of Escoffier. Fabulous, huge quenelle sauced with lobster creme containing generous chucks of lobster, served with a side of basmati rice and vermicelli (world's best Rice a Roni). 6. Souffle caramel buerre salé, sorbet de poire - best ever souffle, whole roasted noisettes (the real nuts this time) in the bottom of the dish, sauced with wonderful salted caramel, small quenelle of pear sorbet lightly flavored with what they called poivron de Mexique. 7. Nice assortment of mignardises. 8. Coffee Drank badoit with this and whole bottle of some Rully 1er cru but did not write down the name of the producer. My wife had some different things but i did not take good notes on her stuff, had plenty of my own to worry about. Turned out that wine worked exactly with what we both had, but the club menu comes with paired wines. Their selection of cheeses looked perfect, that would have been a supplement to the menu club, would like to have sampled but could not pack more in. Yes you should go, we left very happy, amazed that such a high quality feast could be had for 189e total, all in. Picture of the souffle is attached.
  5. I do have firsthand knowledge of Paris NYE dining, 2 star on down, absolutely not worth it. The restros will be absolutely packed to the point that good service is difficult and since they are so busy it seems most places offer stuff that can be prepared in advance, you end up paying extreme high prices for what is not a lot better than airplane food, and your $100 budget is totally unrealistic for NYE dining in Paris, except maybe at Quick or Hippopotamus which is not really dining.
  6. 42390

    paris vacation

    my experience is that the Red Guide does a good job of reporting fairly exact holiday closing dates. It is true that some restaurant close around Christmas time but you will absolutely not have a problem filling your dining schedule with good places to eat. I go every year from about 20 Dec to 05 Jan. True you may miss out perhaps on some place you are set on visiting but there will be plenty of others to substitute. For instance, I was wanting to go to Fogon this last visit, was closed, substituted La Braisiere, no problem. Do not go out to eat on new years eve. Believe me on this. I have done so from 2 stars on down and it is always a rip off. Prices are jacked up, the restaurants are too packed to really do their best work, absolutely not worth it. The food shops do a great job around that time of year, you can pick up really great things to take to your apartment. Look at a globe - Paris is nearly 45 degrees north lattitude, further north than Maine. However, it is not usually bitterly cold in December but you can have those days. Generally, the winter climate in Paris seems to be more temperate than, for instance, some place in Germany at the same lattitude, not sure why.
  7. I had barbe à papa flavored with lychee and mint at l'Arnsbourg in December 2006.
  8. 42390

    Famous diners

    I saw Andy Rooney at Relais Louis XIII one time. To keep it on food, he ordered turbot and vanilla millefeuille. He was cranky with the waiters, kept asking for a half bottle of the cheapest wine on the list after they repeatedly told him it only came in full bottles.
  9. 42390

    A Minor Complaint

    I've heard it is because of the 35 hour work week. When that law passed a few years ago instead of hiring more workers business owners just chose to reduce hours of operation. Not sure if this is true but sounds likely. The rationale behind the 35 hour work week was since 35/40 = .875, the result of a 35 hour work week would be that 12.5% more people would need to be employeed to maintain pre law levels of business activity. My guess is that Monday is a slow day for restaurants so rather than hire more people to support a slow day of the week the best choice would be to close.
  10. I loved les Ormes but am fairly sure it has closed.
  11. I looked through my 2003 Red Guide (Paris only version) last night. The 2003 guide was still in the old format. There were 412 restaurant entries in Paris proper (with even more listed in the environs section) that year including the stars and bibs so they have cut down the number of restaurant entries quite a bit. The number of hotel entries is way way lower now than with the old format.
  12. I wasn't aware that Michelin ever listed "all" the restaurants. It only lists those that that it's inspectors consider to be the "best in every category of comfort and price". I am sure you know this but the knives and forks are an indication of a "pleasant restaurant" i.e. one with good decor, service, etc. It doesn't indicate the quality of food. Food quality is indicated by either a bib or the stars. Thus a nice place with good food will have a bib/star and some crossed knives and forks. ← Michelin reformatted their Paris Red Guide 2 or 3 years ago. Prior to that there were only short cryptic entries for each restaurant and there seemed to be a lot more entries than now. Now there are only one or two entries per page with lengthy descriptions. I have not actually counted up the number of entries in the 2008 Paris guide versus the 2001, for instance, edition but I am sure it has been cut down quite a bit.
  13. I will put in a plug for my favorite part of Alsace. It is to the north of Strasbourg, always stay in Lembach either in the guest rooms at the 1 star Auberge du Cheval Blanc or the Hotel au Heimbach http://www.hotel-au-heimbach.fr. This is about 35 miles north of Strasbourg and is a perfect little village. As for dining, in the immediate area there is the 3 star l'Arnsbourg http://www.arnsbourg.com (also has a hotel now), and the 2 star le Cygne in Gundershoffen http://www.aucygne.fr in addition to Cheval Blanc which is really outstanding. For non food things, the Maginot line runs right through here and is interesting to see.
  14. Could be Banyuls or Mas Amiel, fortified wines made in the south of France (but not made in Provence)
  15. I hope you are not talking about Cador on ave Admiral Coligny.
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