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Upcoming Paris Trip


docsconz
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If you decide to visit Giverny instead of Versailles, you may also want to visit Musee Marmottan, in the 16th, which has a fantastic collection of Monet's Water Lilies in addition to other Impressionist gems. It's a beautiful walk back towards the Eiffel Tower -- a walk that could easily end at Astrance's doorstep :biggrin:.

I think it's great your kids are willing to stay with their younger brother in the evening.....when we took our 3 to London a few years ago, that idea would not have been well received. Oh no, no, no....that little pistol would not have wanted to miss out on anything.

I agree 100% about planned spontaneity. Some friends consider me nuts, but I always travel with notes on places to eat in several different neighborhoods when we leave the hotel or apartment each day. That way, no matter where we are in our travels around lunchtime we have a few previously researched options to check out.

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If you decide to visit Giverny instead of Versailles, you may also want to visit Musee Marmottan, in the 16th, which has a fantastic collection of Monet's Water Lilies in addition to other Impressionist gems. It's a beautiful walk back towards the Eiffel Tower -- a walk that could easily end at Astrance's doorstep  :biggrin:.

Last tome I was in Paris in May of 1999 there was an incredible Monet exhibit from collections around the world at The Orangerie. Magnificent. That Museum has most of the large scale Water Lillies. I know that it has been closed, but I believe that it is supposed to have reopened or will reopen soon.

I think it's great your kids are willing to stay with their younger brother in the evening.....when we took our 3 to London a few years ago, that idea would not have been well received. Oh no, no, no....that little pistol would not have wanted to miss out on anything.

Who said the idea was well received? :wink::laugh:

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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(Literally) just back from 2 weeks in Paris and very jet lagged.  When are you going?

How was your trip?

July and August are my least favorite months to be in Paris.

Someone mentioned upthread something about nightlife. On my last trips there, I was traveling as a family man so we didn't go to any night clubs.

But when I was going to school and working there I remember a really good night club scene that went well into the night, early morning and going out to eat at 4:00 AM.

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

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How was your trip?

The trip was great, thanks. The food agenda might have been a little too ambitious, but we enjoyed everything. We had dinner at Au Bon Acueil, Taillevent, Aux Lyonnais, Le Troquet, Mon Viel Ami (twice), Angle de Faubourg, Le Violon d'Ingres, La Bastide Odeon, Les Ormes, Le Pamphlet, Le Clos de Gourmet, and Bofinger. We missed out on Thierry Burlot because we spent the first night in Philadelphia instead of Paris, courtesy of U.S. Airways.

I'll be posting about it all as soon as things get back to normal and I figure out where to start.

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July and August are my least favorite months to be in Philadelphia.

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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A day in Versailles. Picnic lunch - suggestions for what?

This picnic must include cheese from one of the fine fromagieries. I've eaten my first raw milk cheeses during my trip--which I'm still on--and can't get over how wonderful they are.

JJ Goode

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"For those of you following along, JJ is one of these hummingbird-metabolism types. He weighs something like eleven pounds but he can eat more than me and Jason put together..." -Fat Guy

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I stayed in the exact same area with my children last year. Goncourt was right at the corner. If you want to stay in the neighborhood try Astier. I have been there at least 3 or 4 times in the past year and have never been dissappointed.

As for the area being lively, there is no need to fear. I imagine you are on Rue Faubourg du Temple, and whatever direction you go in is lively..ahem.

Villaret is a great little resto, I don't know why it does not get talked up more! I don't remember what I ate there, bur it was modern French and the owner has a great respect for good wines.

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

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On one evening I hope to be dining at Pierre Gagnaire.

Doc, did you get a reservation at Gagnaire? My evening there was one of the most memorable eating experiences I've ever had. My description for his cooking is "cerebral food," as each dish seems to be its own little gastronomic exploration.

I do hope you're able to go. :smile:

Jennifer L. Iannolo

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I stayed in the exact same area with my children last year. Goncourt was right at the corner. If you want to stay in the neighborhood try Astier. I have been there at least 3 or 4 times in the past year and have never been dissappointed.

As for the area being lively, there is no need to fear. I imagine you are on Rue Faubourg du Temple, and whatever direction you go in is lively..ahem.

Villaret is a great little resto, I don't know why it does not get talked up more! I don't remember what I ate there, bur it was modern French and the owner has a great respect for good wines.

raisab, thanks for thee encouraging input. We will be at rue Arthur Groussier. I imagine that this is quite close to where you were. What are those particular restaurants like? Is "modern French" along the lines of the upscale bistros such ass L'Epi Dupin?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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On one evening I hope to be dining at Pierre Gagnaire.

Doc, did you get a reservation at Gagnaire? My evening there was one of the most memorable eating experiences I've ever had. My description for his cooking is "cerebral food," as each dish seems to be its own little gastronomic exploration.

I do hope you're able to go. :smile:

Jennifer, I should find out soon as I believe they are scheduled to return from vacation on the 17th. I expect it would be fun. Did you have any particularly memorable dishes?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Doc,

Villaret is most definately along the lines of Epi Dupin but better. By modern, I mean not classic but oh so original and true to the French method. When I went there were very few Americans there, and the owner seemed to know most of who walked in.

Astier is also in the tune of Epi Dupin but meilleur(better). They also have an awesome cheese tray they bring to your table, which you serve yourself. The only caveat is you have approximately 2 minutes to serve the entire table!

I really think you will love this area. The Canal Saint Martin is a lovely area. There is a wonderful little wineshop there, if I think of the name I will tell you. Buy a bottle, (bring you own glasses, they can't sell or give you disposibles) and go to the canal with your children, let them run wild and enjoy the beautiful afternoon you will most surely have in September.

I am off to Paris tomorrow evening after a 3 months hiatus. If I can help with anything, let me know.

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

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The Canal Saint Martin is a lovely area. There is a wonderful little wineshop there, if I think of the name I will tell you.

Probably Le Verre Volé on rue Lancry.

www.parisnotebook.wordpress.com

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The Canal Saint Martin is a lovely area. There is a wonderful little wineshop there, if I think of the name I will tell you.

Probably Le Verre Volé on rue Lancry.

Felice is correct! I am PM'ing you P.

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

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On one evening I hope to be dining at Pierre Gagnaire.

Doc, did you get a reservation at Gagnaire? My evening there was one of the most memorable eating experiences I've ever had. My description for his cooking is "cerebral food," as each dish seems to be its own little gastronomic exploration.

I do hope you're able to go. :smile:

Jennifer, I should find out soon as I believe they are scheduled to return from vacation on the 17th. I expect it would be fun. Did you have any particularly memorable dishes?

I got it!

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Doc,

Villaret is most definately along the lines of Epi Dupin but better. By modern, I mean not classic but oh so original and true to the French method. When I went there were very few Americans there, and the owner seemed to know most of who walked in.

Astier is also in the tune of Epi Dupin but meilleur(better). They also have an awesome cheese tray they bring to your table, which you serve yourself. The only caveat is you have approximately 2 minutes to serve the entire table!

I really think you will love this area. The Canal Saint Martin is a lovely area. There is a wonderful little wineshop there, if I think of the name I will tell you. Buy a bottle, (bring you own glasses, they can't sell or give you disposibles) and go to the canal with your children, let them run wild and enjoy the beautiful afternoon you will most surely have in September.

I am off to Paris tomorrow evening after a 3 months hiatus. If I can help with anything, let me know.

raisa, thanks for the descriptions. Where exactly is Villaret? Is it an easy walk from the Goncourt metro?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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You may want to also ask John about Villaret, he is not much of a fan. But if you do a search on egullet my posting on the night we went there will come up, and I have to respectfully disagree with Mr. Talbott. :raz:

Edited for spelling, when are we getting spellcheck? :wacko:

Edited by raisab (log)

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

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You may want to also ask John about Villaret, he is not much of a fan. But if you do a search on egullet my posting on the night we went there will come up, and I have to respectfully disagree with Mr. Talbott. :raz:

Edited for spelling, when are we getting spellcheck? :wacko:

Oh boy, here I am again in the minority. How to explain it?

First, I don't think my opinion is infallable. I have had such different experiences from those of other persons whose opinion I value highly (eg Bux about l'Astrance + l'Ami Jean, raisab about Villaret, Felice about lunch at Le Comptoir, Sebastien Demorand about La Famille, the world about Pamphlet) that I've got to question my judgment.

Second, I think I have a lower than normal/average theshold for dissatisfaction, so, if something is off, there are so many places that have just opened or I've heard about, that I venture off to try something new, even tho it might be bad rather than chance another off-meal at a known quantity..

Third, I value consistency and innovation so I think places should deliver consistently good food but not stick to the same carte for months on end.

Fourth, I'm influenced by my companions' dishes - if say, one of the four of us has a terrible course, that's what I remember, not the 75% of them that were good. Which is not to say that I write every place off after one bad course - I am a sucker for thinking maybe I was wrong.

That said, let's return to Villaret; I've only eaten there 6-8 times and despite my wife and companions' disgruntlement with the "lack of 'girl-food'" [their quote not mine] and overall food preparation, versus my relatively positive impression, I go back every time I hear someone rave about it.

Bottom line - go, you'll love it, you'll wonder why I'm not passionate about it. Have fun.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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John,

Please, please don't think I am questioning your judgement so please don't you question it either. (did that make sense?) Taste is always subjective. I advised Doc to ask you about it so he could get two sides of the story! You have had much more experience with Villaret than I have. I loved it but who knows next time I may go and find it so-so.

By the way I found the food very girly :biggrin:

Signed your admirer :wub:

Raisa Berriz

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

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Two sides of a story are always good. I have yet to find or hear of a restaurant with universal praise and no criticism at all :wink:

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Two sides of a story are always good. I have yet to find or hear of a restaurant with universal praise and no criticism at all :wink:

Well, just to be contrary, I'm not sure I've ever heard a bad word uttered about Eric Frechon, either at his eponymous place or the Bristol; nor a good word about flunch.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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A couple of thoughts and suggestions. I have that same type A planning thing. I enjoy the planning as much as the trip, but sometimes I wish I could be less scripted. I always have a lot more planned that can actually occur on a trip, but it is nice to know what the possibilities are so you have things to choose from and adapt according to weather and energy levels. We just spent two weeks in Paris and we didn't do half of what I wanted to, but at least I didn't waste time thinking about what the choices were. I agree with the suggestion that time be allowed for just taking in the place, which I find quite rewarding. Toward the end of our trip, after I'd had enought of the museums and regular sight-seeing, it was fun to just wander the neighborhoods and soak up the city,

I tend to use taxis in Paris more as I get older. For short trips with multiple people they aren't all that expensive. Part of the problem is that we always seem to be late for dinner, and the only way we will be on time is to take a taxi. I usually find a taxi stand near where we are staying and ask at the restaurant where one is located when it's time to leave. Occassionally we have a restaurant call one if there is no stand close, but you do pay more that way. I've never had any luck hailing a taxi anywhere other than at an empty stand. I doubt you will ever find a taxi that the 5 of you can get in even if you could convince the driver to take you all, so you would have to take two of them if you are all riding. That may pose further logistical problems at night when many of the stands seem to be deserted and you would need to have two come by at the same time. I've had no luck at night pushing the button that some of the taxi stands have. Taxis would work well for the three of you going home from Gagnaire. There is something very exciting about a taxi ride around the Arc de Triomphe, down the Champs Elysees, and along the river at night. On our last night, we had a great taxi ride like that after dinner at Bofinger. My wife said she wanted to see the sights so the driver said he would "follow his nose." He took us along the river and over to the other side of the Eiffel Tower so we traveled by it when the light show was on, then back along the Champs Elysees to our apartment. The fare was about 25E as I recall, but we thought it was well worth it.

You have a great list of restaurants, and you are probably going to be happy at any of them. One factor I like to consider when narrowing a list is whether a restaurant is in an area that has things I want to see- either before or after dinner or lunch. (I usually give up on substantial lunches fairly quickly into a trip though and have lunch at cafes wherever I am at lunch time.) For instance, before dinner at Mon Vieil Ami, we explored the Ile St-Louis and after we saw the lights on Notre Dame. The Eiffel Tower is handy to see before dinner at Au Bon Accueil, and late afternoon/early evening is a good time to go because the light is good and the lines always seem shorter. With kids involved, the ease of transportation on the metro would also be a factor.

Have a nice trip.

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Thanks for the tips! Our minds must think alike. One thing about traveling with a 6 year old is I don't think that we will be out very late at night far from our apartment. :laugh: My restaurant list is large enough so that I can pare it based upon what else we want to do. For example, I hope to have lunch at either L'Astrance or Le Bon accueil centered around a visit to the Eiffel Tower. We will most likely take a taxi home from Gagnaire, but the other evenings we will either take the Metro or walk.

Carlsbad, I have very much enjoyed reading your accounts of not just this trip, but others you have made as well. They have given me much to use in my planning. Planning is good to give something to work from and I very much enjoy doing it. It should never, however, be so rigid as to miss the pleasure of spontaneity.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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I'm a great fan of walking and a greater one of walking off a meal. Paris is a great city for walking, even when the storefronts are closed. I absolutely detest getting into a cab on a full stomach. I might suggest that if you could locate a taxi stand some comfortable distance away from Gagnaire, or any target restaurant, in the direction of your home destination on a nice boulevard, you might want to walk a few blocks and then take a cab. Be careful, I remember once choosing not to take the last Metro thinking we'd catch a cab if we got tired of walking and having a great deal of difficulty finding that cab late at night when we wanted 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.

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