One of the few independently owned brasseries left in Paris, Le Grand Colbert, with its globe lamps and ceiling moldings, feels grand yet not overpolished. It attracts a wonderfully Parisian mix of elderly lone diners, business lunchers, tourists, and couples, all of whom come for the enormous seafood platters, duck foie gras with Sauternes jelly, and steak tartare, as well as a few southern-influenced dishes. Whet your appetite with one of the "unjustly forgotten" aperitifs, such as bitter Salers or sweet Lillet Blanc, then expect neither a great bargain nor a life-changing meal: the kitchen does simple fare best. Finish with profiteroles (choux pastry filled with ice cream and smothered in a hot chocolate sauce). Popular with a posttheater crowd, Le Grand Colbert is also a pleasant destination between 3 and 6 pm for rich hot chocolate and cakes.