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Paris may be known as the City of Love, but it’s also the city of food – home to a dizzying array of Michelin-starred restaurants, laid-back cafes and perfectly placed bars. We’ve put together this round-up of mouth-watering culinary hot-spots to try out on your next trip to the French capital. Bon appétit.
Creamy café au lait, flaky croissants dripping with butter… there’s nothing quite like a classically French breakfast to gear you up for a day of exploring. Book-lovers will fall for Le Used Book Café. The perfect fusion between a bookshop and café, it features floor-to-ceiling shelves of 10,000 much-loved tomes and serves up a typically French menu of rich espresso and dishes such as rosemary scones served with orange zest and sticky jam.
Make your breakfast a sophisticated affair at Claus Paris. Located in the heart of the city, the 1st arrondissement, the restaurant is entirely dedicated to refined breakfast fare, embracing French and Nordic fusion flavours. Splash out on dishes such as hearty rosti with smoked salmon with an elegant mimosa.
There’s so much to see in Paris – from shopping on the Champs Élysées to admiring art in the Louvre, that you might find you don’t have time for a sit-down meal. Luckily, there are plenty of casual spots in the city which are perfect for ducking in and out of or grabbing a takeaway from. After an immersive afternoon at the Pompidou, grab a bite to eat at the trendy rooftop Georges Restaurant.
After strolling through the Louvre, refuel at the Bistrot Victoires. Decorated in quintessentially Parisian style – think frosted glass windows and vintage pavement tables – it offers up low-key and satisfying staples to keep you going through the afternoon. Enjoy a bowl of salty frites, or tuck into flaky haddock with steamed potatoes.
If you do have a little more time to linger, do as the Parisians do and indulge in a long lunch. At classic bistro, Allard, duck into succulent duck served with green olives, or go full French with frog’s legs and poached turbot. Both flavours and décor are kept timeless and simple, and it’s located on the Rue Saint-André des Arts, only a 10-minute walk from Notre-Dame.
If you’re a seafood lover, you can’t leave the City of Light without heading to Clamato. Headed up by one of the city’s most famous chefs, Bertrand Grébaut, this seafood restaurant has décor inspired by a traditional fisherman’s hut, with plenty of driftwood and steel. Spend a few hours picking at the Breton barnacles, washed down with a chilled glass of white.
Paris is well-known for its cafes, where patrons chat over steaming cups of espresso and soak up the sun on pavement terraces. La Fontaine de Belleville is an atmospheric place for a caffeinated pick me up. It embraces its 1920s history with hand-painted tables and enormous mirrors. Coffee comes from artisan roasters Brûlerie.
For a cup of coffee with a twist, head to the République of Coffee. It’s run by Mexican chef Mario Flores, who serves top-notch coffee with a side of delicious favourites such as burritos and quesadillas. The fare may be Mexican, but the décor is 100% Parisian, with huge glass windows, flowers on the tables and sumptuous furnishings. You’ll find it near the Place de la République.
As the sun goes down over the Seine, treat yourself to a meal in one of Paris' renowned restaurants. But where to start? We recommend Epicure, which is part of Le Bristol hotel and has three Michelin stars. The menu celebrates French cuisine in all its glory – think soft macaroni filled with luxurious black truffle and giant langoustines cooked with lemon and thyme.
For a more affordable but no less delicious meal to toast your time in Paris, check out Chartier, which draws its inspiration from the Belle Époque. The dining room seats 300 people, so you’re always likely to get a seat, and the inexpensive yet mouth-watering fare includes classics like beef bourguignon and tender sea bream.
Treat your palate to a French feast in the city of love. Browse our French and European cruises now.
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