Lunch options in Paris that will effortlessly impress
Perhaps one of the most widely known traits of the French is their ability to do everything well without seeming like they’re trying. Whilst most people talk about this in the context of fashion, it applies just as equally to lunches too!
We’ve compiled a list of five excellent lunch options in Paris, which don’t look too fancy or formal, but will most certainly impress your friends.
Please note: set lunch options only run during the week!
Bistrot Paul Bert
For the classic French bistro experience, Paul Bert is hard to beat. Tarnished mirrors, a battered zinc bar, and nicotine coloured wallpaper mean that the bistro is bursting with old world charm. Most importantly, of course, the food here is excellent: 18 euros for three very good traditional French courses. There’s also a fancier 38 euro menu, which could include delicious things such as grilled langoustine with truffle butter.
We’ve previously interviewed the chef and owner, Louis-Phillipe Riel – have a look here!Bistrot Paul Bert
18 Rue Paul Bert, 75 011 Paris
Metro: Rue des Boulets or Faidherbe-Chaligny
Mon Oncle Le Vigneron
Another gem tucked away in the back streets of Belleville, Mon Oncle Le Vigneron is actually an epicerie fine. However, they do offer lunches, which hover around 30 euros (note: these must be reserved). Beautifully rustic, calm and cosy, lunches here will showcase all of their great products, which are produced by the extended family. This includes some excellent Riesling, which is provided by (surprise) the uncle.Mon Oncle le Vigneron
71 Rue Rebeval, 75 019 Paris
For a lunch that punches well above its (price) weight, Le Baratin is hard to beat. Understated and located in the very scruffy neighbourhood of Belleville, this French-Argentinean restaurant is a popular choice with many of Paris’ most famous chefs on their days off.
19 euros will give you three excellent courses, bursting with fresh flavours and made with lots of love. The restaurant also has a very good wine list, comprised of excellent organic options.
An added local fact: Edith Piaf was just born around the corner.Le Baratin
3 Rue Jouye-Rouve, 75 020 Paris
Café de Nouvelle Mairie
Just a stone’s throw away from the Pantheon and the Sorbonne, the Café de Nouvelle Mairie is a popular choice with many university professors. For good reason too! The lunches here are excellent, and though there is no set menu, an entrée and plat will probably set you back 20 euros.
It’s a wonderfully light-filled bistro, with great coffee (a rarity in France!). If you enjoy fish, we’d heartily recommend the mackerel rillettes.Café de la Nouvelle Mairie
19 Rue des Fossés Saint-Jacques, 75 005 Paris
Metro: Place Monge
A la Biche au Bois
For an absolutely no-nonsense, traditionally huge and delicious French lunch, look no further than A la Biche au Bois. Lunches here are great value: 29 euros for four courses. This could include a stellar coq au vin (served in a battered pot) and when in season, freshly hunted game.
Regardless of what you order for main, make sure you order a plate of their hand cut frites – beautifully fried to dark, golden brown perfection. Expect to waddle out feeling pleasantly stuffed.A la Biche au Bois
45 Avenue Ledru-Rollin, 75 012 Paris
Can you recommend somewhere for a good lunch in Paris? Share your favourite places with us in the comments below.Image credits:
1. Lunch on Rue Keller, by Alyosha Efros, via Flickr.
2. Bistro Paul Bert, by Rob Hyndman, via Flickr.
3. Le Baratin, by B.Reynolds, via Flickr.
4. A la Biche au Bois, by Yoann G., via Yelp.