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Paris question: For the umpteenth time I'm sure


Simon_S
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We'll be leaving for the airport directly after the recital, so that may provide some suitable souvenirs.

Great idea; macarons travel especially well - I always bring some back to NY with me and they usually arrive intact!

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I'm firmly in the "Astrance is awesome" camp, my advice is to eat there if at all possible.

In a similar price range is Le Pre Catelan where I had a fantastic meal and I don't understand why it never seems to get any play here on eG. Being in the Bois de Bologne, it's a nice change from the urban environment if you're spending an extended period of time in Paris.

Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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Absolutely, another unhesitating recommendation for L'Astrance.

Several visits over the 4 years they have been open, it simply gets better and better. As he matures and quietly becomes more confident (and older) his food really sings. And he continues an unflagging love affair for the quality of his ingredients.

I would be suspicious of a restaurant that was always praised...

Edited by milla (log)
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So, after much forum-searching (John Talbott, your writings are an incredible resource) and a slight upward revision of the budget, I've booked Drouant for the Saturday night. I'll let you know how we get on.

Once again, thanks for the suggestions, despite the fact that I went ahead and ignored them!!

Si

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, we're back from our trip. Here's a brief report:

We had a most enjoyable meal at Drouant, and it turned out to be the ideal restaurant for our needs. As has been reported elsewhere the service was perhaps a little ropey at times, but what was lacking in ultimate polish was made up for in friendliness.

The food was really well-prepared and tasty, the pork belly I ordered probably the highlight of the mains. The lamb looked, and was reported to be, excellent, and the lobster that Hazel ordered was very good. The other main was John Dory, which looked fine, but at that stage of the holiday I was reaching my fish limit, so I didn't pay too much attention to it! Starters were enjoyable, the seared tuna particularly so. I shared the foie gras selection and I wasn't disappointed, but then again you could serve foie gras mashed up in a bucket and I'd be happy with it. The desserts were truly divine, and it is really great to be able to sample so many different flavours if you order as a group. Our waitress asked at one point if we would like any more "as a secret" and much to our delight snuck out of the kitchen with an extra serving of mille feuille!

I thought the prices were very good, with a well-judged wine list. I'll be back.

The previous night, having planned to dine at Le Meurice, Hazel and I decided midway through the holiday that we wouldn't be able to do it justice, so we cancelled that and instead ate at L'Angle du Faubourg. We both had the taster menu, it was extremely enjoyable and, mercifully, quite light.

Our plans to lunch at Le Comptoir de Relais at Sunday lunch were scuppered by the large group of people waiting out front coupled with the growing hunger of one of our party. We ate at les Editeurs across the road and it was okay. Given the numbers still waiting outside Le Comptoir long after 3pm, I'll definitely be sure to make it next time!

We managed a flying visit to Pierre Herme and picked up a small selection (15) of macarons. Having nursed them home on the flight, we lovingly opened the box yesterday intending to have one or two. When the dust settled we had eaten 10 of them, and it was sheer willpower that prevented me tucking into the remaining 5. They really are something else -- I should have got more!

As a final note, the funniest thing about this visit to Paris was that, rather than pointing out notable sites to each other, we seemed to spend all our time pointing out notable restaurants. Comments like "There's Senderens", "Is that Gaya down there?", "Oh look, it's Aux Lyonnais" were normal. I knew things were especially bad when I found myself standing with my back to Notre Dame wondering "Where exactly *is* La Tour d'Argent?!"

I think I've become a hopeless case!!

Si

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We had a most enjoyable meal at Drouant, and it turned out to be the ideal restaurant for our needs.
We had a wonderful meal again there this week, but if truth be told, both Ze Kitchen Galerie + Thierry Burlot surpassed it.
As a final note, the funniest thing about this visit to Paris was that, rather than pointing out notable sites to each other, we seemed to spend all our time pointing out notable restaurants. Comments like "There's Senderens", "Is that Gaya down there?", "Oh look, it's Aux Lyonnais" were normal. I knew things were especially bad when I found myself standing with my back to Notre Dame wondering "Where exactly *is* La Tour d'Argent?!"

I think I've become a hopeless case!!

Welcome to the Land of Delight!

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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As a final note, the funniest thing about this visit to Paris was that, rather than pointing out notable sites to each other, we seemed to spend all our time pointing out notable restaurants. Comments like "There's Senderens", "Is that Gaya down there?", "Oh look, it's Aux Lyonnais" were normal. I knew things were especially bad when I found myself standing with my back to Notre Dame wondering "Where exactly *is* La Tour d'Argent?!"

I think I've become a hopeless case!!

Welcome to the Land of Delight!

Or as my husband turned to me on our last visit and said, "I like the way we travel. On our stomachs." :laugh:

eGullet member #80.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Well, after much discussion, when it came down to it Hazel and I realised that, for whatever reason, we both wanted to dine at Le Meurice. I have booked a table there for the Friday night. Hopefully it will live up to billing (and hopefully my wallet will recover in due course!)

I must admit I'm now intrigued by l'Astrance, and I will definitely try to find my way in there next time I'm in Paris. In fact, I may try to squeeze in a cheeky lunch on this visit if the opportunity presents itself. The differences of opinion on this board are quite entertaining to see, and a timely reminder that "one man's meat", etc. Making (and listening to) restaurant recommendations is dangerous at the best of times, but even more so at the higher end in somewhere like Paris, where the weight of expectation can enhance or ruin a meal depending on the circumstances. In any case, I really want to eat there and find out for myself.

Now all I have to do is find a restaurant for 4 people on Saturday night at the €50-€60 per person mark. Trawling through the many threads on the board left me with Au Bon Accueil as first choice, but I see that it's not open at weekends. I happened across Gallopin on viamichelin and thought it looked interesting in a touristy way, but John Talbott's brief review has put me off somewhat, and to be honest has probably just confirmed what the restaurant's own website suggested. Aux Lyonnais might be a little heavy (?) for the others, although probably right up my alley. I just can't quite separate the wheat from the chaff of the many many choices on offer!! Can I impose upon you all once again for suggestions? We'll be looking for something French (!), lively without being down and dirty, but not Michelin-style either.

Finally, we'll be at St. Sulpice for an organ recital on Sunday afternoon at 4. Is there anywhere nearby for a simple and tasty lunch?

Once again, thanks to all for recommendations and discussion. I know I'm probably going over well-trodden ground here, but such is the breadth of the postings on this site, it can be hard to pinpoint the information we seek. Given the fact that I only have internet access at work, my ability to read through all the previous postings is somewhat limited, so I appreciate the responses.

Cheers,

Si

Too bad you could not get into Au Bon Accueil - I took a group of 8 there last November largely on the recommendation of Mr Talbott and it was wonderful. Superb oysters, great fish and meat main entrees and very good desserts. the wine list was very good as well. Service superb. I'd be interested if it continues to maintain it's standard as I'll be back in Paris next spring and would like to go back again.

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Too bad you could not get into Au Bon Accueil - I took a group of 8 there last November largely on the recommendation of Mr Talbott and it was wonderful.  Superb oysters, great fish and meat main entrees and very good desserts.  the wine list was very good as well.  Service superb.  I'd be interested if it continues to maintain it's standard as I'll be back in Paris next spring and would like to go back again.

I'm happy it didn't disappoint but I've transfered my loyaties from ABA to Les Anges since Jacques Lacipiere moved down the street.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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I'm happy it didn't disappoint but I've transfered my loyaties from ABA to Les Anges since Jacques Lacipiere moved down the street.

obviously I lack comparison, but I was at ABA during a trip to Paris two weeks ago and we had a rather pleasant evening. I found the level of the cooking and the service quite remarkable at that price point (especially when compared to the local scene here in Boston).

so I need to get back asap and try Les Anges I guess.......

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