[Paris] Day 5-6: Le MaZenay, Les Canailles Pigalle, Montée

Third (and final) part of my 6-day trip to Paris, as a solo traveler. You helped me with a lot of very nice suggestions, so here’s how it all turned out.

I’m struggling a bit with this last report and it has to do with Le MaZenay (which was my least favorite meal) and Les Canailles (which was one of my favorites). In both cases, I find it hard to explain why that is. I guess it’s just a matter of liking that particular dish, feeling comfortable in that particular place, feeling a connection with that particular waiter.

Le MaZenay
My lunch on day 5. I arrived at about 12:50, finding the place completely empty - there wasn’t a single guest, apart from me. So I settled at my table, wondering why nobody was there. And then, in the next 15 minutes or so, people kept coming and coming, until all but two table were occupied. Apparently all their reservations were for 1 pm?

Anyway, I had the lunch menu, with a main and a dessert and I didn’t like it all that much. Maybe just unlucky choices on my behalf. The main was ‘pork shoulder from the lagast mountains roasted with saté, coconut milk sauce’. Three large slices of meat, which came with some cauliflower. The cauliflower wasn’t very interesting and I didn’t really recognize the saté.

The dessert ‘white cheese mousse and Corsican clementines, Breton shortbread’. I thought this sounded interesting, but it wasn’t. The cottage cheese didn’t have much taste of itself and nothing had been done with the clementine, except peeling it and putting the segments on top of the cottage cheese. I found that quite disappointing. I can peel a clementine, I don’t need a chef for that.


Les Canailles Pigalle
In my mind this place is quite similar to Le MaZenay, but I liked this a whole lot better. It’s not on an attractive street, and the place itself doesn’t look very special either. I really had my doubts beforehand, I was even thinking about not going there at all, after it took them more than two days to confirm my reservation. On the other hand, reviews seemed to all be quite positive and it was only a 5 minute walk from my hotel.

I really liked the staff. I guess it’s the difference between being friendly, cause your profession requires you to be, and being a genuinely friendly person, who really wants to make an effort and be sure his guest is having a pleasant dinner. In my mind, all three waiters at Les Canailles were in that last category.

I also liked the food, a lot. Started with the foie gras, then the sirloin of beef and finally the chocolate fondant. Classic dishes, but done so well.

I said Les Canailles de Pigalle was one of my favorites, Montée was the other. Had lunch there on my final day in Paris. There were only three guests, including me. I guess a 7 course lunch on a weekday, isn’t for everybody. But it’s a small restaurant, so even with only three guests, it didn’t feel deserted.

I loved every course. The taste of course, but also how they looked. Little pieces of art.

  1. Cheese cookie and paprika chip

  2. Beets, yogurt, parsnips

    ‘Mix before you eat’, I was told

  3. Scallops, nasturtium, celeriac, black olive

    Such a prefect looking plate, loved how this looked (and tasted)

  4. Cod, almond

  5. Red mullet, mint, potato

  6. Quail, foie gras, grapes

  7. Additional dish: Comté cheese 2019

    Sorry, I took my first bite before I remembered to take a picture

  8. Pineapple, meringue, coconut
    And then I completely forgot to take a picture, which is a shame, cause this looked really pretty. A bowl of meringue, filled with pineapple and coconut. Very fresh, but with a little ‘sting’ too, in a good way.

  9. Caramel, popcorn

    It tastes like popcorn, but the texture is nothing like it. They are very little, fluffy flakes, that melt on your tongue. ‘Eat slowly’, I was told. And also, ‘the chef is a bit crazy…’.

X. Coffee, marshmallow


Great report and photos, K_man, thank you!

The first time we went to Mazenay in Sept. 2017, we liked it a lot. In October the same year, some dishes were good, some just okay. The last time we were there in June 2019, we didn’t like anything we were served. The filet de boeuf was nice and saignant, but very chewy. And I’ve always found the atmosphere a bit somber although it seems to draw a lot from the neighborhood. I know some on HO like Le Mazenay, but we haven’t been back although it’s close to the apartment we rent.

Les Canailles Pigalle looks great! It was on our list, but the week we were set to go the menu online wasn’t exactly what we were in the mood for. So we went to Flocon instead and saved Les Canailles Pigalle for the next trip.

Montée is definitely a place we have enjoyed many times - more for lunch than dinner. But the chef is very slow in changing out the menu so we haven’t been since Spring 2019. Your photos tell me that it’s time to check it out again.


We loved Les Canailles - glad to hear it was one of your favorites. I’ve never seen citrus served like that in a restaurant! They’re usually in supremes. Weird. Thanks for another great report!

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We tried Mazenay last fall and were totally unimpressed. Very little choice, same garnish on every dish (in this case butternut squash which I hate). The food was so ho-hum.

Canailles sounds great. The menu offers a good number of choices. Going on my list for September.

By the way, I love your posts, Carole. Very informative.

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