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Everything posted by 42390

  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. 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.
  16. Christian Constant (the chocolatier not the chef with all the places on Rue St Dominique) is at 37 Rue d'Assas in the 6th. He has been at that location for quite some time (I first visited there in early 1999) and is still in business there, or at least was as on mid June 2007 when I last stopped in.
  17. I ate there once in June 2004. At the time they had a 68e dinner menu that was quite a good value but with very limited choices, maybe 2 per course. The interior has a country house kind of decor very similar to Jacques Cagna right around the corner. I enjoyed this dinner very much. First course was an item called nage of langoustines, second course was a very nicely roasted pigeon, cheese, then a dessert that included a tasty armagnac ice cream. I can't remember the principal component of the dessert but i often recall the ice cream. They had a good selection of well prices wines by the glass. If you stray from the fixed dinner menu the prices explode. Would I return, no question, but have not since there are always lots of new places to try.
  18. In the other direction north of Strasbourg is 3 star l'Arnsbourg, also very much worth the drive but has a style of cooking which is about exactly opposite of Auberge de l'Ill.
  19. Maybe so but the 1996 Chateau Meyney, St Estephe, I had at les Ormes (1 star red guide) last week tasted a lot better at 37.5e per bottle rather than 75e. The appartment company I rent from offers the card at 5e per day which is a fabulous value.
  20. I would like to report an a dinner I had earlier tonight at Chez les Anges, 54 Blvd la Tour Maubourg. We arrived at 1930, were seated and had amuse of a thinly sliced sausage, raddishes and carrot strips. We ordered well priced aperitifs, 5e each, of cremant de bourgogne. A second amuse of a thin but very tasty gaspacho was also served. For entrees my wife had a green salad with parmesan and pine nuts. I had a fricassee of girolles with oeuf mollet that had been rolled in bread crumbs and fried. This must have been the world's best everrrrr fried egg, just fabulous. The girolles were served with a lightly frothed sauce. I enjoyed this dish very much. For mains my wife had a piece of Doraude Royale. I had agneau d' Pauillac which consisted of the ris d' agneau, foie d'agneau and carre d'agneau with a small herb salad. This was a fabulous dish. For wine we had a 2000 Pauillac Chateau Lacoste Boire, 58e, but with the Vintage Partnaire card = only 29e!!!! http://www.vintagepartnaire.fr. I have used vintage partnaires twice now and it is the BEST deal going in Paris, 50% off wines at participating restaurants. For dessert my wife had assiette autour cerise, several preparations of cherries and I had a millefeuille framboise with glace caramel beurre sale, both very good. We both had glasses of Sauternes with dessert. Coffee was served with a plate of miniatrue macaroons and tuiles. Total price = 144e which I consider quite a bargain. I liked this restaurant very much.
  21. I had a really good steak frites at la Rotonde on Blvd Montparnasse in December. This place was not on my dining schedule. We had a reservation at les Magnolias, the RER E line had a train hit a person at Gare Fontenay, as a result all traffic on the line stopped in both directions for way more than 2 hours. By the time the trains started running again we had no choice but to return to Paris and look for something else. We ended up at la Rotonde (awarded Bibb Gourmand in the 2007 Red Guide). I had a pave rumsteak with pepper sauce off the 35e fixed menu, my wife had a filet with bernaise off the carte. Both were really good with crispy well made frites. They have original Modiglianis on the wall, there is a story he paid for food there with paintings back in the day. I only considered this place a let down because it was an ad hoc substitute for les Magnolias. If looking for a nicely done steak frites would return in an instant. It is right across the street from la Coupole (which was packed with a lengthy line that night, walked right in Rotonde). As part of the 35e fixed price menu I also had oeufs en meurette and profiteroles.
  22. 42390

    Michelin 2007

    2 great places in Alsace slammed too, Auberge du Cheval Blanc in Lembach cut from two to one, Le Cerf in Marlenhaim cut two to one also. I downgrade Michelin as well!
  23. 42390

    Michelin 2007

    And no 3 stars for Helene Darroze according to the press release
  24. 42390

    Michelin 2007

    There is a press release on Michelin's website today. You can download a pdf document that has all the new ratings. It is not on www.viamichelin.com but is located at www.michelin.fr
  25. I ate there on the night of 22 December 2006. Yes, the dinner menu is 45e for 3 courses, 36e for entree and plat or 32e for plat and dessert. Service is much less formal than previously but cooking is just as good as before.
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