The wife and I are returning to Paris in mid-November after a 4-year break forced on us by the pandemic and the delights of the US immigration system.
In the past, we’ve enjoyed dining at Michelin-starred places like Yam’tcha and L’ Arcane, and more casual places like Frenchie’s wine bar, Les Arlots, Septime La Cave, Clamato, Bistrot Paul Bert and Bonne Aventure.
Usually we travel to a region outside Paris and tended to splash out there on a fancy meal (we did Brittany in 2019, Burgundy in 2018, Bordeaux/Dordogne/Cahors in 2016 and Provence/Cote d’Azur in 2014), but this time it’s going to be just Paris for 4-5 days.
Thanks to many other threads on I’ve found here, I think I have a pretty good shortlist of new places to try this time around.
But I also want to do one ‘fancy’ lunch at a two or three Michelin-starred spot (dinner at most of these places seem too expensive to me), and also a ‘romantic’ dinner one evening.
For lunch, looks like La Clarence ticks the box in terms of ‘special-occasion’ ambiance. I also like the idea that the four ‘sequences’ for 180 euros work out to about 20 small courses. Any better options in the same price range?
As for the romantic dinner, Meg Zimbek of Paris by Mouth recommends Petrelle, and the candle-lot dining room does looks lovely and cozy. She highly praises the food too, which is obviously important.
Would be great to hear any other options — for either that fancy lunch or romantic dinner (with great food!):
For reference, here’s the rest of the itinerary I am considering:
Lunch — Breizh Cafe (the wife is really craving the crepes here, so this one is non negotiable)
Dinner — FIEF (we LOVE restaurants where we can see the crew in action and interact with the chef, and this place seems to guarantee that with the counter menu option)
‘Fancy’ Lunch — Le Clarence?
Dinner — Assuming a long and heavy lunch, late drinks and small bites at a wine bar? Bouche, Frenchie Bar a Vins (a minute’s walk from our hotel!) or Pouliche (suggestions welcome)?
Lunch — Eunoe
‘Romantic’ Dinner — Petrelle?
Lunch — Debating between Jeanne Aimee, Perception and Maison Sota
Dinner — Perception or Jeanne Aimme (depending on what we decide in terms of lunch)
Other places under consideration:
A.T. (Just one Michelin star, and not sure if it’s fancy enough to feel like a special occasion lunch), Kei (too expensive even for lunch?), Le Gabriel (128 euros for three courses, and then jumps to 280 euros for anything more. Is it worth such a big premium?), Pierre Gagnaire (4 course for 175 euros, but the setting doesn’t seem as nice as Le Clarence?)
For other lunches/dinners (romantic or otherwise):
Origines, Pantagreul, Nhome, Parcelles, A.Lea (ex-Epicure chef), Verjus (top rated by Paris by Mouth, but seems too ‘American’?), Cafe de Ministeres, Geosmine, Des Terres (both recommended by the NYT, which automatically makes me skeptical!).
Any and all thoughts welcome. Except for Day 1 lunch at Breizh Cafe, I am open to being persuaded to change all the rest!