France

Restaurants in France

Gastronome or not, France is the place to go for great food. The country has a long history of not only rich, haute cuisine, but a tradition of excellent regional fare that has transformed France into the culinary giant it is today. It’s far too difficult to name just a few of the many great restaurants in France (though the famed Guide Michelin is always happy to help), so those visiting France restaurants should work overtime to try cuisine that is unique and native to the country like pot-au-feu, a hearty beef stew; matelote, fish cooked in cider; coq au vin or boeuf bourguignon, chicken or beef braised in red wine; and ratatouille, a rich vegetable stew. And don’t forget to drop by an authentic patisserie to stock up on madeleines, croissants, macarons, baguettes and all the delicious breads, desserts and cheeses that have set France restaurants apart as leaders in culinary excellence.

Upon entering the main dining room of Les Élysées, in the four-star Hotel Vernet near the Champs Élysées and Arc de Triomphe, look up to see the stained-glass dome ceiling with gilded edging, designed by Gustave Eiffel.

Once a butcher shop, now it has more than meat on its menu.

In the heart of the Golden Triangle, next to Les Champs Elysées, sits the Mini-Palais.

Presidents from across the globe, including Jacques Chirac, Bill Clinton, and Vladimir Putin, once dined at this traditional bistro in the Seventh Arrondissement, just a five-minute walk from Les Invalides.

The concise wine list here is a paean to France’s vin naturel gurus, such as the Jura region’s anti-sulfur crusader Pierre Overnoy and Beaujolais renegade Philippe Jambon.

If you knew in advance that Le Marronnier had 500 seats you’d never go. But forget everything you’ve suffered in French restaurants that accept groups and, when staying in Strasbourg (at Le Chut, l’hôtel du moment), book a cab and cover the 6 1/2 miles to Stutzheim.

Formerly the restaurant of the Hôtel d'Orsay, this Belle Èpoque dining room is much the same as it was when it first opened in 1900. Located on the first floor of the museum, the restaurant is adorned with crystal chandeliers, a frescoed ceiling, and tall arched windows overlooking the Seine.

Owned and operated by Cambodian chef Dao Heng, this tiny, no-frills bistro serves classic French cuisine as well as a small selection of Asian-French fusion dishes.

Yen

Located just a few steps from St.-Germain-des-Prés’ iconic Café de Flore, Yen is an authentic Japanese cuisine restaurant and noodle house. The simple lines, wood doors, and lone white flag outside complement Yen’s minimalist Asian décor inside.

Le Chateaubriand was ranked ninth in S. Pellegrino’s 50 Best Restaurants of the World in 2011.

Chez Savy hasn't changed much, if at all, since its inception in 1923. Located near the famed Champs-Elysées in the Eighth Arrondissement, this quintessential French bistro serves original cuisine from Auvergne among traditional Art Deco touches of Jazz Age Paris.