Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Are most Paris restaurants prix-fixe for New Year's?

Are most Paris restaurants prix-fixe for New Year's?

Nov 25th, 2003, 10:21 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Are most Paris restaurants prix-fixe for New Year's?

I would like to make a reservation for New Year's dinner (since another poster said we might be SOL for food otherwise!) but I still want to have some sort of choices as to what to eat. (I don't want a place where they roll out the courses without any selection on the customer's part.) Is this possible? I am a little overwhelmed because although everyone on this board says to make a reservation somewhere, no one really says where.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 25th, 2003, 10:38 AM
  #2  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
I also would just love some more restaurant recs. After going over my budget, I think 100 euros/person is probably all we'll want to spend. I frankly would rather just walk around and eat somewhere impromptu, but people have said many places close, and the rest are all booked up. Can anyone comment on this? If the consensus is we should reserve, please pass on any recommendations. One consideration is my boyfriend is a strict vegetarian, so if these places have pre-set courses (with no variation allowed) that won't work for us.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 01:21 AM
  #3  
Vincent
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Well, if you stick to your food fetish, there is no choice but contacting one of the few "strictlty vegetarian" restaurants in Paris and ask if they are open that night. In which case they should have a special menu (even if for me "strictly vegetarian" and "festive meal" are a contradiction in terms, but that's judgmental, I confess it). The good news is that your range of restaurants will be extremely restricted. Anglo Saxon guide books, such as Lonely Planet or Rough Guide should list strictly vegetarian restaurants.
 
Nov 26th, 2003, 04:51 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
If ever there was a case to avoid dining in Paris on New Year's, you just made it.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 06:22 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,129
Nearly all restaurants in France offer a special price for New Year's Eve, including dinner, a special drink at midnight and perhaps entertainment. It is assumed that you are booking for a whole evening that will continue into the early hours. Throughout December, restaurants advertise their special New Year's Eve menu. I doubt whether you'd easily find an ordinary meal that evening. If you're in France before the 31st, you may be able to find a suitable place with vacancies, otherwise have a big lunch, so you don't need to eat much in the evening.
GeoffHamer is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 06:49 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 47,150
Given your restrictions, I'd look for someplace in París's "Chinatown."
StCirq is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 07:56 AM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
It's the most ridiculous thing I've heard to suggest that because we can't spend a fortune and one of us can't eat meat it's somehow impossible for us to enjoy a dinner in Paris on New Year's. The only thing that would make it impossible would be sitting next to you, sounds like.

Anyway, we arrive on the 29th, hopefully we'll find someplace that can fit us in. Otherwise I guess it will be a hotel room floor picnic before we wander outside. I would still like more legitimate responses, so please keep them coming.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 08:36 AM
  #8  
Vincent
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
mp143, there are two kinds of diners: those for whom food is a way of enjoying time in a congenial atmosphere, the way locals do and celebrate (especially if the said locals have got some kind of a gastronomic reputation)and to discover local food; and those for whom food is something dangerous, which has to be carefully sorted out, to be eaten in a defensive way just to feed oneself. I think you (and certainly sectarian vegetarians) belong to the latter category. I would even suggest you call off your trip to France (no irony there), because you will be missing much of the fun, especially in the wintertime, and are heading for a daily food nightmare.
 
Nov 26th, 2003, 08:50 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Wow. I'm not going to play the whole vegetarian defense game because it's just stupid, and I'm not even vegetarian, but seriously, have you never eaten something that wasn't cooked carcass? Because if you have, surely you're aware that there is a whole gamut of delicacies to be had all within the confines of vegetarianism. It's pretty silly on your part to arbitrarily assign me a 'category'. I've been looking forward to this trip--and the food I plan to eat on it--for months, and all the while have been asking people on this board where I can buy the best rillette, steak tartare, etc. in Paris. It may be slightly more difficult for a vegetarian to get by in Paris restaurants, but equally so for most carnivorous Americans who won't touch anything that isn't steak or white meat chicken. I strongly doubt that eating in an int'l capital would be a nightmare for anyone.

Call off my trip? Are you daft?
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:27 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,657
chill out here folks. MP413, you have a task ahead of you, but there's no reason to go with a chip on your collective (you & Beau) shoulders. It seems to me in recent years that Paris has increased the numbers of vegetarian options...and you will be able to find them. The suggestion to check out Lonely Planet guide is an excellent one, and if you identify a couple of places that sound good, try to contact them as soon as possible to find out what they plan to offer for New Years. If he is a Vegan, it may be more difficult, but I've several Indian friends who are "strict vegetarians" for religious purposes, and they have quite enjoyed all the capitols of Europe with few problems.
uhoh_busted is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:39 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Uhoh, he's vegetarian not vegan. And he's usually quite contented to survive on cheese, which is a pleasure in France anyway. I was just hoping to find something slightly more creative for him for NYE dinner!

As for the proverbial chip, we don't have one. It's absurd to tell someone they can't enjoy Paris and should CANCEL THEIR TRIP (??) because they have different eating habits, whatever the reasoning behind those habits may be. Suggest Vincent et al. should expand horizons some to realize not everyone in the world is/eats/thinks like an American.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:43 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 380


Finding in Paris a restaurant open, serving a vegetarian meal, on budget and without reservation for New Year's Eve definitely seems a near-impossible task to me.

I would advise you, like other posters did, to call ahead vegetarian or ethnic restaurants and reserve your table.
clairobscur is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:45 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 380


Oh...and yes, essentially all restaurants open on New Year's Eve will serve only a fixed price menu. That might not be true for ethnic restaurants, but I wouldn't know since I never paid attention.
clairobscur is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:46 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Thanks. I've posted another request for veg. restaurants since I don't know any and no one here has given me any names.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:47 AM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
PS--we are ready and willing to reserve ahead of time, if someone can give us a suggestion of where. I've scoured the web but most Paris restaurants don't have websites or NYE info.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:48 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
mp413, quoted: "It's the most ridiculous thing I've heard to suggest that because we can't spend a fortune and one of us can't eat meat it's somehow impossible for us to enjoy a dinner in Paris on New Year's. The only thing that would make it impossible would be sitting next to you, sounds like."

WHO said ANYTHING about spending a fortune or that it will be IMPOSSIBLE to find a vegetarian restaurant in Paris???? The chip on this shoulder is quite a load, indeed.

"It's pretty silly on your part..." What's pretty silly (especially to the French) is this ridiculous query.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:55 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,638
mp413: I called a friend of mine who's a vegetarian and travels to Paris quite frequently. She suggested this website: www.happycow.net/europe/france/paris/. It lists at least a dozen restaurants but then again, I don't know if they serve dinner on New Year's Eve. Good luck to you and happy travels.
Treesa is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:59 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,697
I think the advice you were given is good if you just take it for the facts it offers--to look for vegetarian restaurants. The problem is that you are looking for a special NY eve restaurant event and then wanting only vegetarian. You are right that many restaurants will have special menus set for that night and you can't order just what you want. I don't think most people care what you eat or want to eat, they're just telling you the facts.

I'll admit I'm a little confused as to what you want in that regard because at one point you said you just didn't want meat/chicken, and so you could have plenty of seafood choices -- but a lot of vegetarians get angry when they inquire on Fodors broadly about where they can eat and you suggest places that might have seafood. I know because I have done it and they have complained about how no vegetarian would ever eat any kind of seafood and they can get rather snotty about it, as if someone can predict all permutations of what one calls vegetarian or what they, in fact, really mean. It seems any advice should be welcomed, rather than complaining when someone offers very good restaurant suggestions that might have seafood. I have done the latter and gotten complaints even when they don't specify exactly what their particular requirements are.

So, it can be difficult when people have particular food requirements but don't make it clear what they are. You say vegetarian and then talk about just not wanting beef etc. YOu've also made some remarks about not wanting to eat "carcasses" which is an odd term for, let's say, shrimp. Some restaurants will have seafood choices on their NY eve menu, do you want those ideas or not? Otherwise, what would your boyfriend want to be eating for a special NY eve menu that is only vegetarian? You are not going to find tofu entrees in any restaurant except the true vegetarian ones, so that is your best suggestion. NY eve menus are very expensive even in modest restaurants, so there's no point in going to one if you don't want to eat what they are serving.

Here's one suggestion: Au Piano Muet on rue Mouffetard which is cheap and specializes in raclette, but has other good dishes for you to choose from. Raclette is a Swiss cheese specialty: essentially melted cheese, served over boiled potatoes with ground black pepper and some small pickled onions and gherkins. Here is their web page which describes the dishes and has photos:
http://www.paris-lights.com/english/...pianomuet.html

This would be a fun area to be in for NY eve, I'd think. You will note that many of their raclette and other dishes have some meat or duck in them, although I think some do not. You'd have to phone to see if they are doing NY eve, however. Otherwise, a nice friendly, busy brasserie might be fun for a modest NY eve (as modest as it will get), but that would be similar menus to Au Piano Muet, probably, with seafood.
Christina is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:59 AM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Thanks a lot Treesa! That's a decently-sized list. I'll definitely contact some of those places.
mp413 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 10:14 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 236
One thing to remember if your boyfriend is a strict vegetarian is that even in a meal that doesn't include meat, they may use a stock or sauce that has animal-based broth or fat in it. I am an un-strict vegetarian, so that doesn't bother me. But just wanted to point out that the dish may not include meat but may include meat products. Have a great trip--I'm sure you will find wonderful food! And if not, you can always drink your sorrows away.
QueenMab is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:33 AM.