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.
With its resident DJ and even a bouncer, the Opéra Café is an oasis très design, as the French say, in the Papal City's principal square. At about $17, the lunch formule is a good value (appetizer and main course or main course and dessert).
Located inside Paris’s esteemed Hôtel Hospes Lancaster, La Table du Lancaster serves as a creative vehicle for chef Michel Troisgros, recipient of a Michelin star.
Situated in Montmarte, this old-fashioned café is best known as the restaurant where Amélie Poulain waits tables in the 2001 film Amélie. While a steady stream of movie fans continues to arrive each day, the café remains a modest neighborhood eatery with a largely local clientele.
Tables are shared, which most Americans are really not comfortable with, so you just hope for the best. The walls are hung with Hansi village scenes and the marquetry landscapes the Spindlers of Boersch have been chiseling since 1893.
This Alsatian brasserie in the 17th arrondissement has been around since 1925 and continues to specialize in seafood, particularly shellfish.
Wait out a stopover at this spacious lobby bar in the Sheraton, the only direct-access hotel in Charles de Gaulle Airport's Terminal 2. Just a short jaunt away from all terminals via rail concourse, the lounge provides a quiet retreat from airport commotion.
Although famed eating establishments abound around Versailles, La Brasserie du Théâtre is a classic spot for French fare and reliable service. The brasserie is situated at the west end of Versailles, near Neptune’s fountain, in a 19th-century building right next to Le Théâtre Montansier.
La Grande Mosquée de Paris, a restaurant and tearoom on the Left Bank, transports diners to North Africa.
A fun spot to watch the natives drink and scarf down oysters, this neighborhood restaurant and bar in southern Monmartre has local color to spare. Opened the same year the Moulin Rouge and Eiffel Tower debuted (1889), La Mascotte features Art Deco decor and authentic Parisian cuisine.
Epicure in Paris’s Hôtel Le Bristol evolves as the seasons change.