Gastronomy is taken very seriously in France and with the rich history for fine French cuisine, Paris is a city where you will find some of the Worlds finest chefs serving remarkable cuisine and you will find thousands of cafes and restaurants in Paris alone, ranging from the small bistro such as the Allard Bistro through to exceedingly plush restaurants.
Even at a small traditional restaurant like the Boeuf sur le Toit or at a fancy restaurant setting such as the Train Bleu, the quality of food is of the utmost of importance, but many places have to be booked prior and some require reservations weeks or even months in advance, like the Jules Verne at the Eiffel Tower!
When it comes to the type of cuisine, you have choices from all over the world such as the Blue Elephant which serves Thai dishes in beautiful surroundings, Brazilian food at the Brasil Tropical Cabaret and restaurant, Le Curieux Spaghetti Bar for true Italian delights, or the Tokyo Eat restaurant serving adventurous fusion cuisine.
There is so much variety to tempt your taste buds, yet obviously, it is the French food that really stands out in so many restaurants in Paris and some are in unusual surroundings like L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon, 1970's style Korova, the family restaurant Apollo or Altitude 95 in the Eiffel Tower and they vary in cost from only a few Euros to hundreds per person.
But if you want to splash out for that special occasion, the finest way of dining in Paris is with Haute cuisine, which is elaborate food preparation and presentation, and just some of the Michelin star rated Haute cuisine restaurants include the Le Grande Cascade close to the Longchamps horse racing, Guy Savoy, Taillevent, Le Grand Vefour and La Tour d'Argent, where you could be paying upwards of 250 Euros per person, but even the most expensive restaurants are cheaper for lunch than in the evening.
Now forgetting Haute cuisine, you will find most restaurants in Paris serving French cuisine have a Menu du Jour or a set menu of the day and this normally means the most reasonably priced meals, which change frequently depending upon what fresh produce is available.
Also, if you want to eat breakfast out it is likely to be at a Patisserie or Tea Salon where you can get croissants, bread, fillings like cold meats and cheeses, pastries and a nice cup of coffee and numerous places such as Angelina's or Laduree, offer a choice of eating on the premises, or items to take away, but just one point worth mentioning is that many establishments add an additional charge to your bill if you decide to sit outside on their terrace, rather than inside.
When it comes to lunch, you will be able to find numerous different cafes and bistros whilst walking around Paris such as the Cafe Marly with a great view of the famous Louvre museum, and it may be an idea to mark these on a map so that you can find your next fuelling station!
As for the evening, meals are usually served from around 7.30pm and restaurants get far busier from around 9pm onwards. Plus we would like to point out that Parisians do tend to dress up for an evening out and in most restaurants it is expected that you have a glass of wine or two with your meal, but bear in mind that a table wine can be just as expensive as many others on the wine list, as they are still of excellent quality.
And numerous different options are available for an evening meal like the cosy intimate setting of Au Bon Accueil, or perhaps you have been to a nightclub and need to eat in the early hours of the morning, then Au Pied de Cochon that is open 24/7 is a good choice, or you could choose the friendly atmosphere and smells of food cooking on a spit at the Atelier Maitre Albert or contemporary cuisine at Spoon Food and Wine, but you also have cabaret venues where you can enjoy a meal and watch a cabaret show such as at the World famous Moulin Rouge.
And after all this eating out in Paris enjoying the fabulous cuisine on offer, it just may not be the same when you get home!
Martyn Davis European Traveller, Author, Photographer and Business Development Manager, For all your French holiday needs and travel guide to France, with tourist information, landmarks and attractions - Restaurants In Paris
Tres bien, mon ami! J'adore tarte a la framboise et glace au chocolat.
Really good writing, I hear that they have good ice cream in Paris.
I'm taking French and I like to read things about France, so keep writing.
Merci, for the article. :)