Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
Freckles

Cave Gourmande de Marc Singer

Recommended Posts

Bonjour, Egulleters... I`m hoping to go to La Cave Gourmande, in the 19th, for dinner in September. Have any of you been? What are your thoughts? Would it be a good place for a group of 8 women to have a meal together? How are the prices? Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Freckles, I've been there two or three times, and never really loved it -- it's always a bit complicated, twisted... Their wine list is OK, but would you go to the 19th just for that? When Frechon was there (last century...), it sure was a place worth travelling...

Anyway, what are your friends like? What kind of place and atmosphere are you looking for?


"Mais moi non plus, j'ai pas faim! En v'là, une excuse!..."

(Jean-Pierre Marielle)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I and three friends had a dinner there which was so baroque that I haven't been able to write it up to my satisfaction. It was a blend of pretentious cuisine, an overworked and incompetant waiter, lack of proper backup from the front of house manager (the chef's wife), a refusal to accept criticism, and rude interference from the occupant of an adjoining table who came to the front desk to take the side of the chef, who, as far as he was concerned, could do no wrong. (One dish which he stoutly defended was breast of wild duck so lightly cooked as to be properly labeled canard tartare.) The meal was not expensive, but the psychological cost was enormous.


John Whiting, London

Whitings Writings

Top Google/MSN hit for Paris Bistros

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been there twice post-Frechon and have dropped it off my list for reasons of mediocrity - but after reading John Whiting's post, I realize I got off easy. Once Mme Frechon left it really went downhill. Why bother when there are so many other great places. I hesitate to imply sexist motivation, but why does it matter whom you're eating with?


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eric Frechon was indeed worth the trip and the opposite of what John posts about Cave Gourmande. That's a real blow for fans of neighborhood restaurants and it would be rubbing salt into the wounds for me to describe his cooking as well as the service we had from a very able waiter. At least the main waiter was so incredibly compentent that he handled 85% of the tables, including the most difficult four top I have seen in modern times in any restaurant. Alas, they were Americans. The waiter was a joy to watch and only disappointed me in his performance by not smacking at least one of the Americans with a wet towel. I was tempted to do the deed, but Mrs. B persuaded me that it was none of my business. My guess was that she expected to the waiter to snap and didn't want me to rob him of the pleasure.

Let's hope John's dinner was an abberation. It's strange as I am usually prepared to have my duck breast more rare than most French chefs care to serve it.


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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks. It doesn`t sound particularly appealing.

To answer the question of `why does it matter with whom I eat...` I am in charge of picking a restaurant for my friends and I, and of course wish to select an establishment that will treat us well. I have found that when I patronize some Parisian restaurants in a woman-only group, we receive mediocre -- and sometimes even unpleasant -- service. At first, I thought it was just the rudeness that some waiters exhibit to all customers, regardless of gender. But, sadly, I now have a statistically significant number of French meals under my belt and can definitively state that some restaurants will give bad service to a group of women; others will not. Hence my question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well why don't you try a restaurant owned by a woman? Chez Catherine, in the 8th, for instance (great food, huge wine list, chic atmosphere), or les Enfants rouges (a casual wine bar and bistrot), in the 3rd?


"Mais moi non plus, j'ai pas faim! En v'là, une excuse!..."

(Jean-Pierre Marielle)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well why don't you try a restaurant owned by a woman? Chez Catherine, in the 8th, for instance (great food, huge wine list, chic atmosphere), or les Enfants rouges (a casual wine bar and bistrot), in the 3rd?

Or Au Petit Tonneau, on rue Surcouf in the 7th. I've found Mme. Boyer's cuisine de femme to be consistently wonderful.

:smile:

Jamie


See! Antony, that revels long o' nights,

Is notwithstanding up.

Julius Caesar, Act II, Scene ii

biowebsite

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have found that when I patronize some Parisian restaurants in a woman-only group, we receive mediocre -- and sometimes even unpleasant -- service. At first, I thought it was just the rudeness that some waiters exhibit to all customers, regardless of gender.

I wonder if it could be just a "group" thing. Was it only when you are with a large group, or even with just a few women?

Having been a waitress for a many years in the States and even one in Paris, I can tell you that groups can be more difficult to serve at times and since the Parisien waiter has no real incentive (meaning extra $$) to ensure good service he might end up giving you poor service.

Groups (meaning more than 4-6) can be more difficult because every one is usually busy having a good time and doesn't pay much attention to the waiter. Ordering seems to take longer, half the group isn't ready to order when the other half says there are, nobody remembers what they ordered when the food arrives and all that kind of stuff. Also, waiters in Paris generally have way too many tables and so any extra time spent at the table can put you in the "weeds". In the US I generally had 4-5 tables, whereas in Paris I had as many as 10 and no support staff like bussers, runners, etc. So many waiters might come off as gruff, but really they are just way too busy to be nice.


www.parisnotebook.wordpress.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, it could be a group thing. But I eat out in groups quite frequently; sometimes with men, sometimes with women only. I have noticed that waiters have seemed to be more unpleasant when the group is girls-only. It is true, though, that in my girl-only groups we tend to have more constant flow of conversation than when I`m out with, say, my boyfriend and his friends. So, perhaps it is the dynamic of people who are busy talking all through dinner vs. people who do not talk so much, and therefore are better at communicating with waiters.

In any case, I am happy to frequent restaurants where my friends and I are treated nicely, whether owned by women or men.

Which brings me to another question... but I'll start another post for that. Please keep thoughts coming about this thread, since I'm very curious.

THANK you for your thoughtful and helpful responses!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For what it's worth, and Michelin is hardly infalliable, Michelin awards Cave Gourmande a Bib Gourmand.


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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...