It’s finally Friday–the end of what has become a very heavy week. I held off posting this yesterday as it seemed inappropriate and frivolous, but I know we could probably all use the distraction today. Thinking of our readers in Ukraine and hoping you and your loved ones are safe. If you’d like to help, here’s a great list of resources sent to me by a Ukrainian reader.
In what seems like an inevitably jarring transition…
Today, I’m sharing my favorite spots to eat and drink in Paris. Yes, here we are several months after my Atlas Adventures Paris Trip and I’m just getting around to compiling this post. Time has flown by faster in the last year than ever before. It feels like I just got back yesterday! So…better late than never, right?
I started to write a big ole Paris Guide blog post and realized there is just WAY more content than I could possibly recap in one post. Better to break it up by category. So, here we are, with my most requested category.
Where to Eat and Drink in Paris
A very famous spot for bottomless steak frites. (Locals also frequent, not just tourists!) There is only one thing on the menu: steak frites! It also comes with delicious bread and a salad, which was simple yet very good and a welcome addition because by the time we ate there I hadn’t seen a fresh vegetable in days. The servers are ladies who have seemingly worked there forever, they are very no-nonsense, and will swoop in and plop down more steak and fries on your plate as soon as they see an empty space–so be ready, haha! We went for lunch, I recommend going EARLY when they open, as there was a long queue when we left. They are also open for dinner–but you need to prepare to wait! FYI there are several locations!
Really cute spot we stumbled upon for lunch my first day there! We sat outside and had an awesome meal–I loved my Croque Monsieur and frites. The wine was great and our server was very nice and funny. I’m sure it would be lovely for dinner or a drink any time of day.
Chez Fernande Christine: (Above)
An absolute must for dinner. A handful of you dm’ed me when you saw we were here and said it’s your favorite spot in Paris. If you want the quintessential French bistro experience, you must go here. Not only was the food lovely (and homey, and just felt like a hug), but the staff is a riot. Rebecca arranged our welcome dinner of 24 girls here, and they dubbed us, “The Rebeccas” Tell Baptiste that “one of the Rebeccas” sent you.
We had our last group dinner here–it’s a very Instagrammy place but SO cool. Owned by the Big Mama group which is a well-known restaurant group in London and Paris. We ate on the top floor which is an indoor terrace (or maybe it just felt like an indoor terrace?) The food was delicious–authentic Italian. Pizzas and Pastas were great and so were the cocktails. They don’t take reservations, plan for a line!
Same owners as Pink Mama, appears to be the same menu, different location in case this one is more convenient to where you’re staying. Also looks adorably instagrammy!
Au Petit Fer A Cheval:(Above)
One of my favorite meals–my kind of spot. Tiny, historic, unfussy rustic but delicious food. We came here for lunch after an afternoon of shopping in The Marais. I had the beef bourguignon and frites and they were fantastic. Sit inside at one of the tiny tables, cozy bar, or on the patio and watch the hustle and bustle of The Marais. Would’ve loved to come here for a nightcap at the bar–they’re open late!
Our big group came here after our twilight picnic at the Eiffel Tower! We sat outside under the heat lamps and those who were still hungry ordered food! They have great cocktails and great food. They have the traditional French staples but they also had things like Poke bowls–which Rebecca ordered and loved! A good spot for a drink or a bite not far from the Eiffel Tower.
A really cute spot that wasn’t overly busy (and could sit like 15 girls on a whim). If you’re looking for a good lunch spot near the Tuileries or the Louvre that isn’t overrun with tourists this would be a good spot! The food was good and you can snag a table on the patio overlooking the park.
Neal and I ate here on our trip to Paris a few years back and it was delicious. Roasted chicken is their speciality and even a local Parisian on the street told me that “it’s the best chicken in Paris!”
If you want something a little more upscale and less traditional than your average bistro, this came recommended to us by Adele & Joules. The menu is seasonal and rotating but very fresh and not heavy at all. It’s also very cozy, dark, and romantic (at least for dinner!)
Whitney, V, Rebecca and I went to dinner here our second night as it was a close walk to our hotel. It was great Italian food, fun trendy vibes, a really cute but small patio as well. We sat inside and got pizzas for dinner and they were great! A good choice if you’re looking for a break from French cuisine.
I had no idea they had a Hoxton in Paris but we were looking for a late-night spot for cocktails and some nibbles and this fit the bill! It was very swanky! I would go elsewhere for dinner (somewhere they don’t have in the US!) but if you need somewhere to land after, this is a good bet!
Brasserie Il Saint Louis: (Above)
A favorite spot very close to Notre Dame on Il Saint Louis. It has a great terrace with beautiful views overlooking the river. It was a favorite spot to stop for an espresso when I was with Neal and Rebecca and I happened to stumble upon it again when we were walking back from our class at La Cuisine. Have never eaten there, but the food looked good (classic French fare). A lovely stop for a morning
If you appreciate a TRUE hole in the wall experience, want to go a little rogue and love Vietnamese food–you must go here. Neal and I loved it so much that on our last night in Paris we cancelled our fancy dinner reservation and went back. It has four tables. The owner is also the cook and the waiter. She speaks Vietnamese and French (no English) but we spoke via Google Translate and she was so friendly and welcoming. She made recommendations for us and they were all so good.
Favorites were the pho and the Bo Bun. Her dog wanders around the restaurant, you can see into the kitchen and it’s a hot mess express–but it’s all part of the charm. We loved getting to talk with the other diners as well. (It’s a very tiny, communal place.) I’d recommend going at off hours (we always went for dinner on the later side after 9pm) because again, there are only four tables!
Neal and I had a reservation here and never made it because we ended up back at our favorite Vietnamese hole in the wall (see below!) But I wanted to include it here because it’s a cute place and the menu is a bit lighter than your traditional French bistro. (Sometimes you need need to mix things up!)
A great spot for drinks before or after dinner! They have a beautiful bar paired with eccentric clown motifs on the wall.
Highly recommend the chicken paillard and frites! (And wine, always wine!)
Bimbo is a great spot for lunch in Montmartre
Terass Hotel Rooftop Bar:(Above)
If you’d like drinks with a view in Montmartre, this is a great spot overlooking the whole city!
An awesome and adorable spot we stopped for lunch after exploring Montemartre. It’s in a nice location because it’s on your way back down (so you don’t eat a delicious meal and wine and have to walk all the way back down the steep hill)
A warm, funky neighborhood standby that has live music Tuesday-Sunday. Neal and I went here late night and it was really fun if you’re looking for something different!
If you want to feel like Eloise, go to Angelina for their famous hot chocolate. It’s so fun and fancy, you’ll live out all your little girl dreams! I cannot wait to bring June one day! I haven’t been in a long time (since college) but it was such a fun experience–I hope it’s still the same! (Note: There are also “Angelinas” restaurants/snack bars in some of the museums–while this is the same company it’s not the same thing!)
Don’t miss the brioche at Le Pain Retrouve for a snack any time of day
Bakeries and Patisseries:
There are several locations of this cute boulangerie throughout the city. We stopped at the Bastille location to grab goodies and wandered over to Places de Vosges and had a little picnic. In addition to bread and pastry they have some grab and go sandwiches and other lunchy/snack type items–specifically a vegan selection too!
Found this gem on the way to Montmartre and while everything we got was good–the brioche was to DIE for.
A very famous macaron shop with several locations around Paris. They’re all very instagrammy and the macarons were very good!
Our Atlas Adventures Paris group in at our Eiffel Tower picnic!
For a very special occasion:
Ok so this isn’t technically a restaurant or bar, but I’d be remiss to not mention the ultimate food and drink experience…
Yanique from My Parisian Life was the one who brought our Parisian Picnic at the Eiffel Tower to life! You can hire her to create an incredible picnic box (to eat anywhere you please!) for you OR hire her to set up an entire experience like we had! This would be so great for a special occasion like an engagement, anniversary, or “just because” surprise! I cannot recommend this experience enough–enjoying this delicious spread, drinking amazing wine and being there to watch the sun set and see the tower light up was just the most amazing experience! Yanique is also really lovely and truly an artist at what she does! You can read her blog (with tons of Paris reccos!) here, and book her picnic experience here!