My best restaurants in France, my selection

 St Jean de Luz Pau  Ile de Ré Noirmousiter en l'Ile Nantes Angers  Batz sur Mer Mont Saint MichelWell I would like to talk about dining in the rest of France ,outside my area of Versailles/Paris. I need to do some catch up so will list the ones that have remained memorable for me and my family and some repeat often. It is a difficult task as there are so many good ones here, food is king or queen, and choices are endless. However, I will again dare to give my choices;hope they will become yours in the years to come. This was written in 2011 originally,so I have given it a refreshment in 2017 ::)

French follow a light breakfast, continental style , and lately some yougurt, are thrown in there. Sometime you see heavier placing but this is only in tourist places or buffet style. Lunch is the main meal of the day, heavy and hearty, usually between 12h-15h where you need to be there on time or be square, place is closed or chef is out having lunch! Then dinner starts by 19h in most cases onwards to about 23h generally speaking. I know in some place nice folks have stay open for me until 01h00 when gathering with a group, but most like to leave by 23h and in some chains they stay until midnite 00h00, this is a lighter meal than lunch, but sometime hard to distinguish the two. Sundays lunch is our big gastronomic time, and we either go out or cook a big meal at home. More and more places are opening with Brunch , with one price all you can eat.

There are many places where you can eat in France, these are call Auberge, hostellerie,relais (all a coaching inn or alternative to restaurant); a bar,a bistro,a cabaret or boite de nuit, brasserie,cafe,buffet restaurant,hotels,pizzerias,libre-service(cafeteria style self service usually in hypermarches and autoroutes), rotisserie,salon de thé, and restaurants. The hours again, varied a bit as to more tourist big city areas to provincial inland towns,but normally are open from 11h to 23h or later in brasseries, cafes:bars are from 06h-07h until midnite 00h00, but they can be license to be open as late as 02h00. Restaurants are open for lunch between 12-15h but usually stop seating by 14h30,dinner is between 19h and 22h with some staying as late as 04h00.

The menus are displayed outside every restaurant or eating place, sometimes the meal of the day or plat du jour is posted in a board inside main lobby of the place. You can have a set menu call menu prix fixe where for one standard price you can get a combination of entree and main dish or main dish and dessert or other combinations.  Some places will have a menu conseillé or advice menu which is often the cheapest combination available or you can have the other side of the most expensive with a menu gastronomique. The idea  of tipping is often raise by visitors, here there is something call service compris , meaning the total price including the tip and tax (VAT) is included. If it is not mentioned you can assume it is or ask. If the mention is only prix nets it means nothing extra has been added so you should tip. The tip is not obligatory, and it should be given with several variables in mind; like, what type of place you are in, if you will be a regular customer or just passing visitor,and the amount of services offered, as well as of course the excellence of the service. Its a personal choice. Mine take is ,if the service is good beyond reproach at a passing establishement, I tip a bit a few coins, if indeed is one of my regular joints where I am treated like a family then I tip as much as 15% of the bill. Again ,its up to you.

Some of my favorite places outside my area are:

le Lotus d’Or, 7 rue Bac, 92150, Suresnes; tramway suresnes-longchamps.tel +33 01 40 99 07 10. Just before mounting the highest hill in the Paris area at 162 meters in Mont Valerien, surrounded by the beautiful sight of the river Seine overlooking the bois de bolougne on the other side. Oriental chinese, vietnamese, thai food serve by an entire family with great service and prices,menus from 10€. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-lotus-d-or-suresnes

Donatello, 24 Esplanade Courtieux, 92150, Suresnes. tramway Suresnes-Longchamps, no web tel +33 01 42 04 41 67. An oasis of good inexpensive Italian food just over the bridge pont de Suresnes other side of bois de boulogne and on a courtyard where the market of Suresnes is held. Pizzas from 9€, and real Italian products and chef! More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/donatello-suresnes

Chez Clement, 15bis quai Requenequin Sualem, 78380, Bourgival. a chain that have gone thru bad times due to owner personal problems but the one in Bougival is still open , our classic, and had my oldest son b-day celebrated here. French cuisines in a painter’s old house cant be more romantic, and overlooking the river Seine,really French. You can take RER A to le Vésinet-le Pech and walk here. Tel +33 01 30 78 20 00. More here: https://www.lafourchette.com/restaurant/chez-clement-bougival/289487#reviews

Le Duc de Guise, 13-15  place Louis XII, 41000, Blois. traditional pizzeria and huge salads that wont break your bank and serve very good food. Near the Houdin magician museum,and castle. Tel +33 02 54 78 22 39. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-duc-de-guise-blois

Le Triboulet, 18 place du Chateau, 41000, Blois. French traditional in a house warming cozy setting with wood stove and fireplace. Just across from castle with a great view. Enjoy it, the family love it. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-triboulet-blois-2

Cafe des Arts, 138 cours Victor Hugo, 33000, Bordeaux,tramway musée d’Aquitaine gets you there. tel +33 05 57 95 94 51. Traditional French cafe of old, nicely decorated, good food, if a bit slow at lunch times. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-caf%C3%A9-des-arts-bordeaux

Le Kayoc, 2 allée Pierre Ortal, 33680, Lacanau-Océan. great view right on the beach, and seafood galores ! an oasis our family trek practically every summer. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/kayoc-lacanau

Le Colibri, 12 rue Chanzy, 51100, Reims. great piano bar restaurant right by the Cathedral.Very cozy French traditional, and elegant. Our family love it. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-colibri-reims-2

La Scala, 1 Place Planchat, 18000, Bourges. Great food, ambiance, decorations like you were in Italy, the servers are Italian and you cant eat any better listening to Eroz Ramazzotti! and the waittress singing alone!!!! The reason for the name maybe .We have it mark. More here: http://www.la-scala.org/

Le Palerme, 8 place de l’Eglise, 11990, Hourtin. The medoc again, central plaza overlooking the marché on your way to the beach. Nice setting ,simple but great pizzas good food, great service even in busy summers, you wont be disappointed.  tel +33 05 56 09 18 46. more here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-palerme-hourtin

Le Meridional, 27 ave Pierre Curie, 78210, St Cyr l’Ecole. Recently open and it was a surprise, great Italian dishes at good prices, and family fun, the owners are on board daily. Real Italians for that home cooking we seek always. no web, tel +33 01 39 42 02 95. right on road D10 coming into the city from Versailles. Bit more here: https://www.pagesjaunes.fr/pros/08119610

Brasserie Paul, 1 place de la Cathédrale, 76000, Rouen, a local gourmand place of French traditions. Open in 1898 and the quality continues, friendly fast service even at lunch. Great food and ambiance at the side of the Cathedral of Rouen. tel +33 02 35 71 86 07. More info here:https://www.yelp.com/biz/brasserie-paul-rouen-3

Ty Breiz, 59 Quai Henri IV, 76200, Dieppe, a great creperie in the best area traditon all done on order by mama and son themselves ,right by the harbor. Cant make it any better than like home. tel +33 02 35 82 86 56. More here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/ty-breiz-dieppe

le Crystal, 3 Rue Haute, 14600, Honfleur, a beauty try the second floor inside a house on the pedestrian street out of the harbor to your right, left hand side. great seafood place. tel +33 02 31 89 12 02. More here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-crystal-honfleur

Le Bistro du Port, 14 Quai de la Quarantaine,14600, Honfleur. whether its a seafood pizza or a plat from the ocean this is to be seen and be seen with great ambiance, friendly service always for many years. tel +33 02 31 89 21 84. More here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-bistro-du-port-honfleur

Le Queen , 3 Place Gambetta, 80000, Amiens ; very nice terrace near hotel de ville, to be seen and be seen in town, great views, and ambiance. Come for a pint or a nice steak and fries, good prices,great service, a stop a must. tel +33  03 22 92 60 33. More here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-bistro-du-port-honfleur

Le Bistrot des Brasseurs (3 brasseurs) , 18-20 place de la Gare, 59000,Lille,  a place to taste the beer made next door at the 3 Brasseurs and use here with some moules and frites, great people , come enjoy it.tel +33  03 20 06 37 27. More here: https://www.yelp.com/biz/les-3-brasseurs-lille-2?osq=le+bistrot+des+brasseurs

Le Vieux Comptoir, 10 rue de la Rôtisserie, 37000, Tours, great family place, in an old street of Tours, very nicely decorated. French traditional of great estime locally, and wines of the Loire valley. very sympa. More here: http://levieuxcomptoir.free.fr/accueil.html

Taverne de Bois de Maitre Kanter, Rue Georges Méliés, 41350, St Gervais la Foret. on the road D174 towards the A10 or Blois. Great setting in the middle of the forest to sample Alsacien cuisine. A great tour to continue your journey with a great ambiance. More here: http://www.bloischambord.co.uk/organize/restaurants/french-brasseries/246183-la-taverne-de-maitre-kanter

La Fontana, 2 Rue de la Croix de Fer, 78100, Saint-Germain-en-Laye. Great traditional Italian resto with Italian natives at the kitchen and serving. You will taste like mamma mia and just with the junction of the N186 to the A15 and Paris or the train at Saint Germain en Laye bel air-Fourqueux. no web tel +33 01 34 51 67 66. More here:https://www.yelp.fr/biz/la-fontana-st-germain-en-laye

J’Go, 16 Place Victor Hugo, 31000, Toulouse. they have it now in Paris too, the best of the southwest with an unique local flavor, my favorite in the city of roses. good webpage for all, here is  Toulouse http://lejgo.com/toulouse

Le Louchebem, the butcher of Toulouse in the covered market of place Victor Hugo, great cassoulet toulosain, ambiance, service and great views on the second floor over the place.Cant beat it. 21 different meats to choose from but keep at the cassoulet ::) More here: http://www.lelouchebem-toulouse.fr/

Bar Les Clip’s , 1 place de la Trebaille, 81000, Albi . Great prices good view underneath the cathedral by the parking below its back. Cassoulet was good,and the service very family friendly. Good to go; no web, Tel +33 05 63 54 90 68. More info under the brasserie here: http://www.tourisme-tarn.com/restauration/brasserie-du-clips

Les Berceaux,  13 rue de Berceaux, 51200, Epernay. Sublime Champagne resto gastronomic French cuisine at its best, cozy, ambiance sublime, regal, one of the best in the area. right in central town off  rue Eugéne Mercier, More here: http://www.lesberceaux.com/

La Cave d’Artagnan, 4 rue de la republique, 32000, Auch. Great tapas selection and ambiance, friendly service. The products comes right from the owners farm, great foie gras tapas, enjoy it ,more here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/la-cave-d-artagnan-auch-2

Some new additions as years go by are:
La Vieille auberge, at Mont Saint Michel. Lovely architecture overlooking the bay, good food friendly service in an area loaded with tourist is to recommend. More here: https://www.lavieilleauberge-montsaintmichel.com/fr/restaurant.html

Le Phare in the island or Ïle de Ré, wonderful quaint seafaring town of St Martin de Ré, and the place was just great: more here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-phare-st-martin-de-r%C3%A9

La Brasserie Royal at Pau. Grand placeof Pau historical chic good ambiance right on the square Place Royale. More here: http://brasserie-royale.com/

Le Suisse, St Jean de Luz right in the pays Basque, great location near all at place Louis XIV , and good times in family. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-suisse-saint-jean-de-luz-2

Pizzeria Nota Bene at Nantes. excellent location , nice architecture, good food and soft prices. more here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/la-nota-bene-nantes?osq=pizzeria+nota+bene

Crêperie Le Blé Noir at Noirmoustier en L’ïle. A wonderful location by the place Saint Louis and good galettes! More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/creperie-le-bl%C3%A9-noir-noirmoutier-en-l-%C3%AEle

Le Pub du Ralliement at Angers. nice central location good food and nice ambience; nice. More here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-pub-angers?osq=le+pub+ralliement

Crëperie La Flambée at Guérande. In the old town just next to the ramparts walls; good old fashion ambiance good service good food nice; more here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/la-flamb%C3%A9e-gu%C3%A9rande-2

Le Café de la Plage, Batz-sur-Mer. Overlooking the sea cith by the harbor at the beach or plage Saint Michel.Very good family ambiance good food good prices nice. More here: http://www.ot-batzsurmer.fr/le-cafe-de-la-plage.html

I have try to update as many as usual some were already out of business, a very common thing here where competition and the tourist season are fierce , and of course, these are those still open that I like. Of course, you must verify before hand at the time of your travel if they are still open.Hope it helps and bon appétit dans la belle France::)

 

2 Comments to “My best restaurants in France, my selection”

  1. wow…I can’t believe La Scala in Bourges is on your list. I have walked past that place many, many times and never thought about trying it. I will this year :-). It’s actually 1/2 block from my old lycée).
    J.

    Like

  2. Thanks for keeping tracks ::) Yes wonderful place we have mark to stop by again. shame on you not stopping by hehehehe is wonderful inside. Cheers

    Like

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