Friday, January 25, 2013

Favorite Paris Eateries

Yesterday I gave you some tips for enjoying the best possible meals in Paris, and today I am going to tell you about five of my absolute favorite eateries!
Laduree: The most famous patisserie in Paris.  They have shops throughout the city {as well as across the world} but my favorite is their location on the Champs Elysees.  It is always swarming with tourists and nearly always has a line outside -- but it is so worth the wait.  Not only are their pastries and teas amazing {they are known to have some of the best macaroons in the world} but the elegant interior of the restaurant is absolutely gorgeous.  Its multiple dining rooms across two floors are filled with crystal chandeliers, gold molding, beautiful textiles, pastel-hued china, and silver tea services.  Marie Antoinette would clearly approve.  My absolute favorite dessert was the Saint-Honore Rose Framboise which was a gorgeous combination of fresh raspberries, rose-petal creme, custard, pâte feuilletée, raspberry compote, and rose fondant -- topped with one beautiful red rose petal.  I would give anything to have one of these for lunch today!
Le Comptoir du Relais: This brasserie received the trifecta of accolades - it was recommended by Fodor's, Bon Appetit, AND a Parisian friend.  Clearly we had to give it a try.  On my first trip to Paris I ventured to this restaurant with my boyfriend and sister {who had flown over from Germany to meet us}.  They do not take reservations so you have to stand in a line outside of the restaurant to get a table.  It is quite small and we had to wait about 90 minutes to be seated -- but it was so worth it.  The extensive menu features farm to table classic French fare with a twist.  I ordered the tuna {pictured above} which was absolutely fantastic.  I loved it so much that I went there again with my mom this fall.  This time we were seated outside under a heat lamp and given fleece blankets to keep us warm.  It was her favorite meal of the entire trip, and we still daydream about it!
Les Cocottes de Christian Constant: This was another restaurant with a lot of hype, so my boyfriend and I decided to save it for our last night in Paris.  Located in the uber-posh 7th Arrondisement, only a few blocks from the Eiffel Tower, it was even more crowded than expected.  Since it also didn't take reservations we were a bit nervous that they wouldn't be able to seat us, but after a slightly uncomfortable 45-minute wait {the waiting area was tiny and packed with people} we were seated at the bar.  What ensued was a two-hour long feast for the taste buds.  We started with the infamous Vraie salade César Ritz which was simply perfect.  It {along with the majority of the other items on the menu} was served in a cast-iron Staub cocotte.  For my entree I had the most delicious provencal-style chicken with root vegetables, again cooked in a cast-iron cocotte.  To finish we split the insanely rich and delicious La fabuleuse tarte au chocolate de Christian Constant, which most certainly lived up to its hype.  It was the perfect ending to the perfect week in Paris.
Chez Georges: I was dying to visit a quintessential Parisian bistro reminiscent of one of my favorite era's - the 1920's.  After doing some research I decided on Chez Georges, which was recommended by Bon Appetit and Julia Child herself {during my trip I was actually reading "My Life in Paris" in which she describes Chez Georges as one of her favorite bistros}.  Located on a quiet little street, it would be easy to miss {thank goodness for Google Maps}.  However, once we stepped inside we were transported to an era of classic French food and style.  I ordered the Sole Chez Georges {similar to Sole Meuniere} which was delicious and incredibly rich.  I could only finish about one third of it!  We sipped wine and enjoyed the lively atmosphere.  If you're looking for classic French fare I would highly recommend Chez George.
 
Fromage: Ok, so I know this isn't a "restaurant" but honestly a trip to Paris is not complete without a simple meal of fresh baguette, cheese, a bit of fruit or preserves, and some wine by the Seine.  It is quick, easy, and the absolutely out of this world delicious.  Believe me when I tell you the cheese in the United States doesn't even hold a candle to French cheese {many of which are actually illegal to sell in the US because they are unpasteurized}.  I highly recommend picking up your cheese at the fromagerie on Ile Saint Louis then walking just a few hundred steps to the Seine.  If you're feeling extra lucky then stop at the patisserie on the island and pick up something sweet for dessert.  It is one of my happiest memories of Paris, and I know it will be yours too!

Images via {1} {2} {3} {4} {5} {6} {7} {8} {9} {10} {12}

4 comments:

  1. What a fantastic selection - now I wish I could go to Paris right this minute and visit these lovely places! There is something so utterly romantic about dining in Paris.... ahh!

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    1. i know, even going to a simple bistro is infinitely more romantic than going to a restaurant here in the US!

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  2. love this!

    http://glamourgirl-bg.blogspot.com/

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  3. OK, this is almost criminal. Looking at these photos and reading your desciptions of the lovely meals makes me want to hop on a plane and go directly to Ile Saint Louis for fromage and patesserie and have a lovely picninc. I would then walk the banks of the Seine (carefully watching out for "gold ring" exploits) then go stand in line at Le Comptoir Du Relais! Ahhh, Paris...beautiful memories

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