revel and roam, food is a travel essential, paris, crepes

Food in Paris – Where to start?

July 19, 2013

For me, traveling is about eating, it is as essential as the art and culture in a city. In fact, food is THE way to literally taste the culture! However, when there are so many good restaurants like you have in Paris, how do you pick a place to try? As usual, we scoured various food blogs and looked for restaurant reviews, you name it. All I can say is that you will end up with a list and in the end you will have to try it out for yourself.
 
We learned in this trip that it takes some amount of stomach stamina and taste bud endurance to tackle high end meals. This is probably common for all Michelin Star type restaurants, but we have encountered this more in France and French cuisine than anywhere else. After being a tad disappointed this time at L’atelier Etoile (a restaurant by Joël Robuchon that is supposedly ranked in some world restaurant guide) I think it will have to be a very special circumstance before we sit down for another 4 hour meal.
 
So unless you are a true fan of marathon meals, we bring you three spots for tried and true, great regular dining in Paris. They take far less time, and they deliver enjoyable food at normal prices.

 

#1 Chartier

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Where: 7 rue du Faubourg Montmartre, 75009 Paris
What: Lunch
Notable: This restaurant has been around for more than a hundred years. They serve quintessential French cuisine at very affordable prices. They are open 7 days a week from 11.30am to 10pm. A mix of tourists and local Parisans, it’s a great place for an informal meal. Sitting next to us was a Parisan couple, that seemed to have emerged from the Bohemian rubbles. “Ah, artists in Paris” was what came to mind and that validated their presence as I devoured the duck pate in front of me. Frites… Duck… Foie Gras… Beef Bourguignonne… Yum!
Price: Affordable (~10 euro for a main)

 

#2 Rose Bakery

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Where: 30 rue Debelleyme, 75003 Paris
What: Breakfast
Notable: A casual place that uses fresh ingredients, this place provides freshly baked goods and other delights. It got really packed after awhile, so be sure to get in a little earlier! It didn’t help that one of their waiters decided not to show, so the staff was a little tense, but the food was still great. They open at 9am, closed on Mondays.
Price: A little at the high side for baked goods

 
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#3 La Compagnie de Bretagne

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Where: 9 rue de l’Ecole de Médecine, 75006 PARIS
What: Lunch
Notable: Crepes! If you’ve never had French crepes or Breton galettes before, you are in for a treat! And if you’ve had it before, well, it will rival your top creperie experience. Please, if you can spare a meal, go try it out. You will not be disappointed!
Price: Regular sit down dinner prices

 

Cider

Cider was just delicious. The earthy taste of apple, combined with just the right amount of tang and sweet… simply refreshing. Order up a bottle to go with the meal to get the true Breton experience.

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Plain and simple

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Galette with seaweed butter

The first course allowed us to come face to face with the Breton galette: a savory buckwheat pancake with nothing more than a creamy butter, accented by a sea salty flavor, provided by the flakes of seaweed. It was thin enough to be light, but substantial enough to enjoy the butter soaked bites.
 

Crepe with salted butter caramel

A simple wheat pancake drizzled with heavenly caramel and melted salted butter. Need I say more?

 

More complex mains

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Galette with fresh goat cheese, smoked sweet pepper, chives and young salad

The fresh goat cheese was creamy and light, combined with the warm sweet pepper puree, each bite was just plain delicious! The greens added a touch of lightness to the dish, and the galette was able to bring it all together wonderfully.

 

Galette with wood fire grilled sausage and stewed onions

The sweet caramelized onions complemented the smokey sausage very well. The light taste of the galette allowed the smokey and sweet to dominate, but the density of each accompanying piece also tames it down a tad by soaking in the juices and evening out the strong flavors.

Voila! Three places to try the next time you are in Paris!

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