The old Kanter/Colbert of Versailles !!!

In the my saga of Versailles told many times in my blog so no need to repeat again, just read on. I had written a post early in my blogging life on Restaurants of Versailles which turn out to be pretty popular! However, there is one restaurant we went a lot that I like to update and tell you about it just for the memories as it has closed too. The one of great history and good food, I like to tell you about the old Le Pavillon Colbert ,and former Maitre Kanter of Versailles.

We came here first as the Tavern of Maître Kanter, a chain of Alsacien type style restaurants. It was located at 5 Rue Colbert , a small side street left of the Château de Versailles in the Notre Dame district (my former).  In the old Colbert Hotel that Louis XIV built to his chief minister, the former residence of Jean-Baptiste Colbert, the decor of the tavern is faithful to the tradition of the sign: purple, wood, mirrors, fountain and abundant shellfish pond. The location of this establishment makes you dream: to the right of the castle, near the Place d’Armes, the storefront dazzles the passers by its lights and its presence in this small counter-alley of the rue Colbert. This little street, cozy with great views over the parvis , and the great Choucroutes Lol!

Versailles-maitre-kanter-nov12

In the light of the Sun King, facing the sumptuous Chateau de Versailles, the Marquis de Villacerf opened the doors of his mansion and invites you to his table. Madam, Sir, welcome to the Le Pavillon Colbert or Colbert Pavilion. This 17C mansion owes its existence to the benevolence of Louis XIV who donated the site to his state councillor, Edouard Colbert de Villacerf. The latter built a pavilion, which he named Hôtel de Villacerf. Later Colbert Hotel and now Hotel de France!

Versailles-maitre-kanter-inside-nov12

A place full of history since 1690. The lounges of the Hôtel de France combine: The Salon des Glaces (Ice salon) , which will enchant you with its warm colours, chandeliers and parquet of the period, the Salon Napoleon III, ideal for your sub-commissions or a private meal, the pretty Salon des Glaces or the salon Colbert. These salon are ready for rental for any occasion as the hotel also closed. All due to the pandemic and economics. 

For info, some of the other remarkable buildings on the Rue Colbert (known for short of Jean-Baptiste Colbert) are no. 1: Hotel de Grammont until 1809, at n ° 5: Hotel de Villacerf, property at the end of the 19C of Prince Roland Bonaparte (and now hotel de France and restaurant Pavillon Colbert), at N ° 7: Former hotel of Choiseul, then of Villeroy, which housed in 1870-71 the Prussian minister of War and its services. And No. 13: Current EDF, (electricity co of France) location of the former hotel of Aumont under the former regime , and home of Charles-Frédéric Nepveu, architect of the château under Louis-Philippe, at the end of his life.

Versailles-rue-Colbert-nov12

As this is a very famous area and very frequented by my family, with many trips to the tavern and later a couple times at the Pavillon I like to tell you a bit of history I like on Mr Colbert.

Mr Jean-Baptiste Colbert was a pupil of the Jesuits in Reims by 1634,  Clerk of a Notary as chaplain, then of a prosecutor , Commissioner of the troops in Nivernais by 1640, the Regiment of Tavanes by 1641, Clerk of Sublet de Noyer, Secretary of War, protected by Michel Le Tellier ( Brother-in-law of Saint-Pouange) by 1643, his special clerk by 1645, and patented councillor of State then Intendant of Cardinal Mazarin, Marquis of Seignelay by 1657 in the county of Auxerre, purchased in favor of his eldest son, Châteauneuf-sur-Cher and Blainville, Count of  Creully by 1682), Baron de Sceaux, Linières, Ormoy, etc., Lord of Torcy, Minister & Secretary of State of the King’s house from 1668, Marine & Commerce, from 1669, Intendant by 1662 and Comptroller-General of the King’s Finances, superintendent of Buildings, Arts & factories and purchases of France by 1664, Commander & Grand-treasurer of the orders of the King, Academician by 1667, he (inherits a fortune confiscated on an uncle Pussort passed to the enemy in 1647. Married in 1648 Marie Charron ,daughter of Jean-Jacques Charron , Lord of Menars, Grand-Bailiff of Blois, captain of the hunts of the county of Blois, and of Marie Begon. Together they had nine children.

 Mr. Jean-Baptiste Colbert, Comptroller General of the Finances of Louis XIV was responsible for the development of trade, industry, the Royal Navy, the planning of Paris and the growth of sciences. In constant relationship with the king, he remains one of his best trusted men. As in charge of buildings,  he, also took care of Paris with the layout of numerous squares and the Tuileries garden. Attached to the sciences, Colbert was at the origin of the creation of the Academy of Sciences in 1666, as well as of the Observatoire de Paris the following year. Colbert will never be disgraced. He is one of the few men whose Louis XIV will always be sure.

His name gave the Colbertism, economic theory which implies dirigisme state and protectionism.  Responsible for the management of the finances of the state, Colbert writes in October 1659 a brief on alleged mismanagements of the superintendent of Finance Nicolas Fouquet, (see post Vaux le Vicomte) pointing out that less than 50% of the taxes collected would reach the king!. On September 5, 1661, the superintendent Fouquet, fallen in disgrace following the analyses of Colbert, was arrested in Nantes by D’Artagnan (famous muskeeteer-see post). Following this arrest, king Louis XIV abolished the office of Superintendent of Finance and decided to exercise it himself with the help of a council created on 15 September 1661 , called the Royal Council of Finance. He died in 1683 and was buried at Saint-Eustache Church (see post) in Paris. And where his legs are kept, while the remainder of his remains was transferred to the catacombs of Paris in 1787.  So a great historical street as well isn’t it! And we love it by there.

There you go folks, another dandy in my dear Versailles! We love it by here and walked it many times more. Hope you enjoy the post and do explore beautiful Versailles !! This is one of those memorable posts that even if the places are no longer there, will always remained in our hearts.Of course, no webpages.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all !!!

2 Comments to “The old Kanter/Colbert of Versailles !!!”

  1. Nice post and interesting to learn about Colbert.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: