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Anniversary Dinner in Paris

Greetings again! Our trip is really beginning to take shape, as we have reserved our lodging for Paris (10/19-10/24), have booked our trains from Brussels and back to Brussels, and are now looking at our Bruges (10/16-10/19) and Brussels (10/24-25) lodging, in addition to restaurant and sightseeing ideas. The one evening that we want to get right, though is our anniversary (10/20).

We are staying in 7e, just south of the Eiffel Tower in a charming area. One thought I had was Les Ombres until the Eiffel lights up, and then a tour after dinner. Les Ombres is expensive, though, and I feel like maybe we'll be paying as much for the view as for the fare?

Now, the view is certainly not unimportant to us, it's just that we're going for the entire experience. We live in SW Virginia, and so we're just not fancy shmancy. That doesn't mean we want a ho-hum environment, but just that we want it to be real; something sweet and romantic would probably trump something fancier and more stuffy. We like cozy, quaint, good service, excellent food, multiple courses etc. We aren't looking for "cheap", and aren't unwilling to pay Les Ombres prices, but would like to get a diversity of opinions.

Please let me know if I can clarify, and thanks so much!

Posted by
8293 posts

Have a look at the website for La Fermette Marbeuf. So, so beautiful and delicious food, too.

Posted by
88 posts

Thank you, Norma! Some of the reviews seem to express significant disappointment, and claim it is a tourist trap, etc. etc. Do you have a counterpoint to any of that? Thanks again. :-)

Posted by
88 posts

I love the look of Le Villaret. It gets high marks in Paris by Mouth, and seems to be both rustic and romantic. Any experience from you good folks?

Posted by
29 posts

I'm not sure if the location must be near the Eiffel Tower, but we had a lovely dinner last year at L'Ange 20 in the Marais area. The address is 44 R. des Tournelles. If I remember correctly, we were able to make a reservation directly from the restaurant website. Reservations are necessary since the restaurant is small. The quarters are a bit close, but I found that added to the charm.

Posted by
8293 posts

Oh, Nicholas, I am sorry to hear that about La Fermette Marbeuf.! I really enjoyed but it was about 8 years ago, so,I should have checked the reviews before recommending it. Anyway, no doubt it is still beautiful which means nothing if the food is not good.

Posted by
88 posts

No worries, Norma! I completely understand. It is nice to have Google reviews these days, as they can be very informative.

Posted by
8293 posts

Just received the Bonjour Paris newsletter and it mentions a new restaurant at Le Palais de Tokyo, Les Grandes Verres. It looks marvellous. See what you think.

Posted by
88 posts

The prices look right, Norma! The pictures are during the day, so it's difficult to say, but I'm thinking it might be a bit less cozy - too casual/modern/I dunno - than what we're looking for. Will wait to see if more picture materialize before we make our trip. Thanks!

Posted by
9771 posts

Pottoka comes highly recommended by a friend who lived nearby, although I can't vouch for it myself. A person whose opinion I trust, though!

Le Villaret has been a huge favorite of ours for a long time, although I haven't been there in years (we simply don't go out to restaurants as much to eat any more, it's not that the restaurant has a downturn or anything). I used to make sure to take my favorite friends and family there when they would visit -- in fact, that's where we went to dinner the night my parents and brother and sister-in-law met my then-boyfriend, now husband! And the reason we knew about it in the first place was that he and his restaurant biz friends loved going there.

Posted by
9771 posts

p.s. if you're cheese fans, you'll get kick out of Le Villaret -- if you order cheese at the end of the meal, they bring this little cabinet to your table, and open the front door (lined with mesh metal that lets air in but keeps bugs outs) for you to make your selection!

Of course Le Villaret is all the way across town from where you're staying, while Pottoka is right there. In either case, be sure to reserve in advance (which obviously you are thinking of doing since you're planning ahead!).

Posted by
870 posts

We had a wonderful anniversary dinner at Le P'tit Troquet! It's a small, intimate, family owned bistro. Wonderful food and even better hospitality. They could not have done more to ensure that we had a memorable evening! We have already booked a return visit for this fall. (reservations are a must) http://www.leptittroquet.fr/
I most strongly disagree with a previous post about Pottoka. It was the absolute WORST experience we had on our three week trip. The staff was beyond rude, horrendous service, overpriced food that was mediocre at best. Would not return there under any circumstances!

Posted by
2712 posts

And so it goes...We dined at P'tit the night before Pottaka. We found the food to be very ordinary-not bad but not at all special. Pottaka on the other hand was fabulous. When our table was still occupied when we arrived they comped us champagne while we waited. Service, food, top notch. I guess every restaurant has an off night and maybe that is what you experienced. But, if I landed in Paris tomorrow and had one place to return it would be Pottaka.

Posted by
88 posts

It is always so interesting when reading reviews; how so many folks can have varying opinions. I believe L'Ange 20 and La Villaret are still our top choices, but we will probably get the locals' opinions as well. Le P'tit Troquet looks great as well. When I get so many good recommendations, I usually go to the Google reviews, and weigh the review against the number of reviews, and then make a decision. Thanks so much for all of your thoughtfulness!

Posted by
21 posts

If you are looking for other options near your hotel (not for the anniversary dinner but other dates) I recommend trying Cafe Constant. We dined there twice and really enjoyed it. I would also recommend Bistro Paul Bert. It's further out but it's a straight shot on one of the metro lines near the Eiffel Tower (Ecole Militaire). Reservations needed, delicious food!