Been to Bofinger?

Old Nov 14th, 2007, 05:38 AM
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Been to Bofinger?

Some questions -

Where's the best area to sit in (non-smoking, please)? What was your bill and what did it include? Need reservations?

Was it worth it?

kenav is offline  
Old Nov 14th, 2007, 06:18 AM
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Best place to sit is under the stained glass dome, which is the non-smoking area anyway.

Last two times I've been there I had the set lunch menu - was around 30-40 euros I think, but that was a few years ago. Can't remember the specific dishes but I know it was very good, and the service was excellent. Haven't been in the evening so can't comment on value for money of the dinner menu.

Definitely worth it, and yes, reservations are (usually) required.
hanl is offline  
Old Nov 14th, 2007, 06:50 AM
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Bofinger has a variety of prix-fixe menus, from 24E at lunch to a special 91E dinner menu. Not the very best food wise (Zagat overrates it with a 20), but arguably the most photogenic. Within the Flo group we prefer Balzar.
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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 07:37 AM
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Yep! Here's my travelogue with details of dinner and even pix of the food:

The seating under the stained glass dome is indeed non-smoking.

"was it worth it?" I think so. Is it the best meal in Paris? No, but it was decent and the setting is lovely.

As for the Flo restaurant group, we always go back to Terminus Nord.
Kristina is offline  
Old Nov 14th, 2007, 07:44 AM
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Wondering if you can go in just for drinks. If so, would there then be seating only at the bar or are there tables in that area for drinks? Can you see the stained glass dome from this area?
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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 08:38 AM
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From my Christmas in Paris 2007 trip report:

"Our dinner on Christmas night was at Bofinger. It was when we got off the metro at Bastille, that Tom’s Tuscan Tours (please see 2005 trip report for details) got a little derailed. I had forgotten to bring the address, and at the Opera Bastille (a place I knew it was fairly near), there were about eight or nine options on which way to head.

Now a sane and raisonnable person would, of course, ask one of the people standing nearby which way Bofinger was located. Not I. In a moment of temporary insanity, I decided I could figure it out with that GPS system of a brain installed in my stubborn head.

For the next ten minutes, I did my best Keystone Kop imitation as I headed one way, then another and then another again. After ten minutes, Tracy was tired of this movie and said, “Please ask somebody.” Good idea.

Trying to be as French as possible (of course, they had probably seen me do my cartoon act for the past ten minutes), I went up to a gentleman in front of the opera. In my best really bad French I said, “Oú est Bo-fahn-jay?”

He looked at me and said, “You mean BowFinger.” Yeah, that’s the place. By the way, there were lots of restaurants open in this neighborhood. I know that because I saw them all on my ten minute joy walk.

We were now 20 minutes late for our 8:30 reservations, and we walked in the door. “Bonsoir,” I told the Maitre’di. “We are Mr. and Mrs. Late People.” He could not find our names.

I then told him our reservations were for 8:30. He said, with a little bit of an attitude (which I like), “Oh, you should have made them for 9.” He then gave us a quick “I’m kidding” look and directed us to our table located under the belle epoch ceiling. It was quite cool and, even better, there is no smoking in this section (although smoking in restaurants did not bother us at all on this trip).

A large number of Americans presumably dine here, but on Christmas night it was mostly occupied by French families, lovers and a couple who we surmised were either on their first date or heading for divorce because they talked about as much as a couple at a Marcel Marceau convention (now that’s a reference I didn’t see coming).

I liked the traditional French waiters, the room and the experience. Dinner was fine, but, once again, it wasn’t one to write home about.

It was more escargots for me, while Tracy had an arugula, egg and bacon salad. My beef in peppercorn sauce wasn’t bad, and Tracy had a Napoleon of seared scallops with Parmesan crisps on a bed of cornichons.

Dessert was good. We had a chocolate mousse cake with caramel on a cookie crust.

For drinks, we had started with some champagne, then a bottle of 2003 Chateauneuf de Pape L’Orateuers (or at least that’s we wrote down) with dinner, and for some strange reason, I had another Irish Coffee after dessert. Interestingly, or maybe not, at home if I have caffeine after 2 p.m., I’m a mess trying to sleep. In Paris, I can drink one at 11 p.m. and sleep like a baby.

Our waiter told us that Bofinger can serve 1,000 or so people on a very busy day, and on this Christmas they were above 700 for the day. The kitchen stays open until 1 a.m."

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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 08:58 AM
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What everybody else said and I always found them to have the best by the bottle champagne prices. You can book a table on-line.
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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 09:11 AM
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Much prefered Bofinger to Balzar. Sometimes you need a reservation and others not.
Another great place if you like fish is Le Dome on Montparnasse and Raspail.
Also try Relais Entrecote around the corner from Cafe de Flore. One dish only for 150 years and there is a line to get in every night. It's steak and FF's and salad--quite an experience and not too costly. You'll meet many locals there.
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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 09:18 AM
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I agree with TPAYT on both places...I would recommend them both for a reasonable meal and a bit of fun.
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Old Nov 15th, 2007, 06:32 AM
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Thanks to all who responded.

Still wondering, though, if Bofinger allows you to just come in for drinks.
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Old Nov 15th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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A few years ago, three of us had dinner at Bofinger. the dollar was much stronger then and a bottle of Crystal was approx $75. My BFF and DH went nuts and wanted to stay for a bottle (or 2), but we had tickets to a concert at St. Chappelle. Needless to say, after the concert we went back to Bofinger to have a bottle. We showed the maitre'd the bill from dinner, told him we wanted to order a bottle of Crystal, and he immediately sat us at a small table in what I would call the waiting area. So, can you go for just drinks, I'm not sure, but we did.
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