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MobyP

Group of 16 People, special occasion

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A friend was searching for a recommendation. The criteria -

16 people, no price limit (say 200-300 Euros before wine), 3 stars preferred, but relaxed/not too stuffy (ruling out Taillevant or L'Ambroisie sorts of places).

I suggested Ducasse or Gagnaire.

Where did the Ducasse fella go (Louisa where are you?) - was it Les Ambassadeurs?

Anyway, need help fast! All suggestions welcome!

[Edit for poor French]


Edited by MobyP (log)

"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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Arpege is not at all stuffy, but it is one of the more expensive three stars. Something like 330 euros for the chef's tasting menu. However, we enjoyed our a la carte meal the most, which was also less money. (You also get quite a few extra plates as well) It's a great place, but no price limit and 200/300 euros is a contradiction in terms.

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Guy Savoy is quite buzzy and has good food and very friendly service. Doesn't have that final notch of perfection in the cooking but v good, and they have some fun long tasting menus too.

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I think 300 € will buy a three course meal at any restaurant in Paris. Longer tasting menus may run more, as will a focus on the most expensive ingredients.

The Ducasse fella--Chef Jean-Francois Piege--is at les Ambassadeurs in the Crillion hotel. Louisa thinks highly of him and of the cuisine at les Ambassadeurs. Let us know how it is if you go there. It's only one star and very expensive, but I would expect an increase in the rating next year and prices are not going to decrease if that's the case. In fact going this year may be a smart move.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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HEY - that's MONSIEUR Piège. How about a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T for my chef?? :biggrin: And yes, M. Piège is at Les Ambassadeurs - and actually oversees all of the kitchens at the Crillon - and YES - I think VERY highly of him. And Bux is right - go NOW.

Moby, for your party there are a few considerations. A party of 16 will probably have to be seated at 3 tables - that's true of Les Ambassadeurs, Ducasse, and Gagnaire. Synchronized service will NOT be an issue at Les Ambassadeurs or Ducasse - I can assure you of that. The food only, "No Limit" price limit is fine at all the three-stars - even L'Arpege tops out at 320E for the Pleine Mer, Pleine Terre tasting menu - unless they go crazy ordering a la carte. Relaxed/not too stuffy - I think is so much more of a function of how well the dining room staff performs than interior style - I've had more relaxed and relaxing service at Ducasse than I've had at most bistros. Ditto on not too stuffy - more than a few pretentious brasseries could take a lesson.

My suggestion - still firmly Les Ambassadeurs. Beautiful classic room - marble, crystal, silk - but just recently COMPLETELY modernized and refurbished. Plates and plating - refreshingly minimalist - pure, clean, white. The food - impeccable ingredients, perfect preparation - there are NO lapses in cooking technique here - subtly inventive - and ultimately luxurious AND delicious.

See the Chef's Philosophy and the Summer 2004 menu here.


Edited by LKL Chu (log)

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Interesting. Txs for the info, LKL!

Do I understand well that they have only a menu at lunch time? Nevertheless, it seems very nice for only 70 €.

For me, the dining room of Les Ambassadeurs is one of the most beuatifull I have ever seen.

Besides, the wine list was good too.

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Thanks chaps. Alas the meal is not for me. I'm just the man witth powerful friends (being yous guys).


"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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Pierre G or Guy S - both a riot & pure theatre

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Interesting. Txs for the info, LKL!

Do I understand well that they have only a menu at lunch time? Nevertheless, it seems very nice for only 70 €.

For me, the dining room of Les Ambassadeurs is one of the most beuatifull I have ever seen.

Besides, the wine list was good too.

You may order a la carte at lunch. And good to hear the wine list noted. M. Piege is a serious connoisseur of the Great Wines - and our sommelier - 2004 MOF - was originally trained as a chef himself.

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with all respect, while m. piege is the exec chef at les ambassadeurs and runs the cuisine kitchen with a tight hand, he is quite clueless as to pastry and merely directs what is to be done in the pastry kitchen.

when i say tight hand, i mean a real tight hand which involves steps such as physically shaking a junior chef by one shoulder while simultaneously screaming at the top of his lungs into the latter's face; well, if that what it takes to keep a one-star award and to earn another one....no thanks mister.

i also think the overall quality of pastry at the restaurant has taken a nosedive after m. christophe felder, the former pastry chef, left. presently restaurant desserts and mignardises at les ambassaduers tend to be inventive at the expense of taste.

i worked in pastry at de crillon and have seen both the abovenamed chefs as well as the present pastry chef in operation. i have also tried the food from both cuisine and pastry sides and there are way more misses than hits. while the setting is certainly luxurious, paul, you will have a better dining experience with better food elsewhere such as gagnaire.

in any case, i second gagnaire as his food is way more interesting, delicious with exquisite presentation.

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Ah - those wealthy types. Instead of Paris, they took a private jet to Switzerland, went for a nice stroll, and then ended up in Fredy Girardet's old place.

"You should have come" they said. "We had a lovely time."


"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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I am appending this to the thread about hosting 16 people because even though Moby was talking about sky's-the-limit places, searchers might better find Spring here. We booked Spring for a 16 person (all he can fit) dinner recently and it was terrific; good food, great wine, small enough to be able to circulate, big enough to make it festive. The menu is a reasonable 36 E for 4 courses (in our case pumpkin soup, scallops, pigeon and a saffroned pear) and wines run from 19-35 E. He was most accomodating and would have cooked darn near anything we asked for according to market rates of course.


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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I'm looking for a restaurant for a birthday dinner for a group of 12 to 15 people. Any suggestions on restaurants that would work well for the following:

-ability to sit large groups at one table

-lively/fun atmosphere

-midrange price (menu at 30 to 40 Euros maybe? before alcohol)

Location is less of an issue, although something in the 8th, 9th, 17th or 18th would work well for most of the guests.

Hours/dates are less of an issue because it will be either a Thursday or Friday night in October so I imagine most restaurants will be open those days.

I did a quick search through the France forum and didn't see anything for this - but if there's already a topic, feel free to direct me there.

Thanks!


52 martinis blog

@52martinis

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Thanks John - I was thinking about Spring, but wasn't sure how he'd feel about booking the whole place out.

And, this is just my (unasked for!) suggestion on the names of these threads - maybe it should be changed to say "Places for group of 12" - because when searching for restos where you can fit a large number of people in the France forum, "group" is the first thing I think to search for (and 'place' or '16' didn't even cross my mind) just a suggestion, of course.... or maybe even "large parties" "Party of 12"

ETA: maybe it's a pointless suggestion as I see that they are all compiled in the compendium that does have "groups" in the title.


Edited by Forest (log)

52 martinis blog

@52martinis

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Thanks John - I was thinking about Spring, but wasn't sure how he'd feel about booking the whole place out. 

I doubt Spring would book any longer on a weeknight, but as long as you can gaurantee a minimum number you can book the entire place on Saturday nights. But if only 12 friends show, you pay for 16, at least I would imagine this is how it works.

I was recently at the Cremerie in the 6th and they will reserve the entire place if you can guarantee a certain number of guests.


www.parisnotebook.wordpress.com

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I was recently at the Cremerie in the 6th and they will reserve the entire place if you can guarantee a certain number of guests.

Thanks Felice. I haven't been to the Cremerie, but will suggest it to my friend. Any idea what the minimum number to reserve the entire place would be? And, is it the type of place where they could take a large reservation even if they didn't want to reserve the entire place (sorry about the questions - i've never been there so I have no idea of the size of the place & want to get an idea before I start calling them and bugging them about reservations.) And, final question - I assuming the food was good?

Thanks!


52 martinis blog

@52martinis

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Wouldn't have remembered without pulling up my review but it's exactly 16

Well, Les Caves Miard, 9, rue des Quatre-Vents in the 6th, 01.43.54.99.30, closed Sundays and Mondays, is a little gem. As readers may have suspected, I’m not big on wine bars, but this place is the exception to the rule. About 13 seats and 3 bar stools, walls lined with bottles of wine, olive oil, vinegar, ragu bolognese, etc., and one guy doing it all. It was just right for me on a freezing Saturday; a bit of lard and I mean lard, Costieres de Nimes wine and a nice radicchio salad with balsamic and parmesan. Perfection. My bill was 35 Euros. No smoking, indeed the one-man band, Piero or Pierre, went outside to have a puff. The music was strangely reminiscent of Italian groups on the Metro, but somehow here it fit.
You should know tho, that it's changed hands and I haven't been but reports are good, for example, Feb 19th
Tuesday in A Nous Paris, courtesy of Felice, I read that Jerome Berger had given 3/5 blocks to La Cremerie, coordinates given in the guidebooks, open for lunch and dinner but closed Sundays and Mondays, a la carte about 30 €, that has been taken over by a couple of young architects and it sounds like quite successfully, adding {to my memory anyway} more dishes and desserts to the charcuterie, but fewer glasses of wine.
What about the basement of Les Papilles?, that's about the right size.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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Thanks all.

Incidentally, I tried calling Spring and there's no space available for something like that until Dec. So, if anyone's thinking of booking out the whole restaurant - do so early!

My friend has decided to go with Chalet des Iles (the one at Bois Boulogne). I haven't eaten there so I have no idea what the food will be like. But, the location sounds really pleasant. I'll report back if it's good.


52 martinis blog

@52martinis

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