Paris after 15 years

Feb 19th, 2016, 08:34 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 64
Paris after 15 years

My wife and I have been travelling thru Europe for the last 15 and this May will be our return to Paris. There are so many restaurants and its making my head spin. I am looking for small bistros as the cliche goes where the locals go and enterprising tourist. We are there for 5 nights. We are not food snobs. We are comfortable in Michelin restaurants as we are comfortable in hole in the wall places. Any assistance would be appreciated.
zmzm917 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 09:46 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 8,803
I'm not one who feels I must know where I'll be eating next so, obviously when this question is asked, I think just look around wherever you are when you're hungry, look at menus outside at places that look appealing, avoid menus in other than French and take a chance. Especially in Paris where there are so many, few of us, I suspect, will leave and go to a place across town because someone on Fodor's said they liked it.

Having given my speech, I'll say that I have looked on some websites and have made a list from them for my upcoming trip for places within walking distance from my accommodation. I like that they're reviewed and give an idea of costs:

http://www.timeout.com/paris/en/restaurants
http://parisbymouth.com/our-guide-to-paris-restaurants/
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 09:56 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 8,827
Check "The New Food Lover's Guide to Paris". You can download the app or buy her book. And yes, I do know Patricia.
Robert2533 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 10:01 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 46,731
I agree with Mme Perdu. Not being a fanatic about food (but having a great interest in it, love cooking, and have given culinary tours), I tend to just scout out what looks good around me when I'm hungry in Paris. By law every restaurant has to display menus and prices, and often you can see who's there and what they're eating and assess whether people are enjoying it or not, so I would just wander until you find something that appeals. You can also check out the Chowhound website, which does attract a lot of people who are far more srious about food than I am, but still have wonderful recommendations. As noted, Paris By Mouth is another great resource.
StCirq is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 10:09 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 2,585
I like to eat but I find Choxhound alien to me.
These guys seem to have no other interest than eat.

I downloaded tripadvisor's app and I use it for the function 'what is near you' when I look for a restaurant.
I ednd up about 30% of the time in the restaurant I selected, finding it not that interesting after all or having come accross another one 'en route' to it.

plenty of good restaurant;

Now if you want a special atmosphere, special food please do ask, we may give you one of our favourites. indicate a budget.
Whathello is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 10:32 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 142
A couple of suggestions from our December visit. If in Montmartre, La Bascule was excellent food for good value. Not too far from the Louvre is Le Mesturet, a traditional bistro. If you are anywhere nearby, get an éclair au chocolat at Maison Pradier.
dweislaw is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 10:44 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 2,435
Agree with MmePerdu; we generally choose place to eat based on what's around when we get hungry, but we were disappointed by the food in Paris last fall and more specifically on the results we got relying on Yelp, so next time (if there is a next time for Paris) we would make a list of the places that are near where we are going to be.

One suggestion: Chez Gladines 30 Rue des cinq Diamants. 13th Arr near Porte d' Italie. I think they have a location on Blvd San Germaine as well--we ate in both, but the 13th location less touristy. Basque and pas cher.
dwdvagamundo is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 01:18 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 64
I agree about checking what is around us but i have also learnt in the past when you have limited dining opprtunities planning is key. For example,if. I did not plan our trip in San Sebastian, Spain we would have missed out. I have started looking at conde nast for some idea. I was just hoping if i could get a couple of "insider information."
zmzm917 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 01:32 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 3,374
I agree with Mme Perdue, and usually do what Whathello does, use the Trip Advisor app for what's near me.

I especially liked l'Alsacienne on I believe rue de Bon near the Hotel de Ville. We found it with TA in our March/April trip.
apersuader65 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 01:45 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,608
I have lived in Paris for 43 years and still enjoy discovering restaurants completely at random. Even the bad ones often provide priceless memories, sometimes just because they were do bad. (One often laughs hysterically about bad experiences while a good experience will just create a weak smile.)

I only make an effort if I must go to a restaurant with people who really care about such things.
kerouac is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 01:49 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 8,803
I'd much rather be disappointed in a restaurant that looked good from the sidewalk, than one I'd spent hours researching and looking forward to for months. But the bigger issue for me is that I'm lazy and just don't care much. Also, there are worse problems than embarking on discovering whether we prefer planned eating in Paris to unplanned.
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 01:55 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 64
if i lived in paris and a bad meal can be replaced by many more, i could see how one can be so casual about it. i think researching mitigates a little risk but at the same time it is only a guide. for sure as i leave the ritz i would ask my door man or our driver where he would recommend around and far. concierge personnel often have agendas.
zmzm917 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:15 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
It's possible that restaurant food in Paris has fallen so far below what it once was that no one knowledgeable goes there anymore as a gastronomic destination, but for many, many years, Paris set the standard for restaurant cooking, both plain and fancy, and many people considered that a legitimate attraction of Paris to be experienced as a visitor, in its own right, and a way of gaining a better understanding French culture.

That is actually still true of much of Europe -- that visitors go with a great curiosity about the food, and want to experience an exemplary version of it.

I realize "foodies" and the focus on food in travel has become obnoxious, but there are still some people traveling who value foreign food experiences as an integral part of travel abroad, and some of you sound like you look down your nose at it. Like I said, maybe Paris is no longer worthy of that kind of interest.
sandralist is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:22 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,608
Paris is perhaps not the place to look for traditional French meals unless you either want to pay a fortune or else settle for ordinary brasserie fare (which, it must be admitted, usually far outshines Applebee's or Denny's) After all, we have more than 1200 Japanese restaurants just for a start. Some people think they should not go to 'Italian' restaurants in Paris, but there are as many Italian restaurants as there are French restaurants since items like pizza or pa
kerouac is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:25 PM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 64
i echo you sandralist. to fly to such a big city like paris and simply walk around aimlessly and hope you "chance" that culinary experience is an alien concept to me. i came to this site hoping to learn from people who frequent there or live there. if someone came to visit my city, i know where to either lead away or to that person to have a descent dining experience.
zmzm917 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:25 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 8,827
>Like I said, maybe Paris is no longer worthy of that kind of interest<

That will depend on where one dines.
Robert2533 is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:29 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,608
(cut off by a stray finger)

items like pizza or pasta became staples in France long before they ever reached North America, where I don't really think they are considered to be 'foreign' food either. Algerian couscous is the second most popular 'French' dish and other North African dishes are also very much appreciated. Then of course there are the countless Chinese-Vietnamese-Cambodian-Laotian-Thai restaurants...

It is interesting to note that Chinese food in Paris is not at all the same as in North America because the Chinese immigrants to France and the United States came from completely different regions with totally different cuisines. For this reason, I have often seen that Americans consider Chinese food in Paris to be 'bad' and by the same token, the French visiting the U.S. don't really like the Chinese food there either.

So going to a restaurant no matter where you travel should be an adventure and not a search for totally traditional dishes that you have heard about. Go out and discover unexpected things!
kerouac is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:39 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 8,803
There are some things I care a great deal about when I'm traveling anywhere, food "experiences" just don't happen to be among them. I like good better than bad but am perfectly happy falling in somewhere & happy to return if there's a good reason. That's the end of my interest. I no more look down on those who are more interested in food than I am, than I expect disdain for that which does interest me. Funny how simple statements of personal preference can seem to be infused with other intent entirely.
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 19th, 2016, 02:43 PM
  #20  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 64
MmePerdu--- my inquiry was simple. I asked for recommendations not an ideal or your opinion how to spend my days in Paris. Having said that, your insight is appreciated.
zmzm917 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 07:53 PM.