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Dinner recs when arriving late in Paris

Our family of 6 will be traveling to Paris over Easter. We are taking a 12 hour private day trip to Normandy which has us, supposedly, arriving back in Paris around 8:30pm. I am looking for suggestions for a place to get a walk-in, bite to eat at the end of a very long day. I don't want to make a restaurant reservation we might not make it back in time for. We are staying directly across from the Tuileries Garden on Rue Royale. Many thanks in advance for your help!

Posted by
33140 posts

If you're being picked up and dropped off, won't you be stopping on the way for dinner?

Posted by
3774 posts

Arriving in Paris at around 8:30 PM is no that late for dinner. I’ve started a meal at around 9 PM at Cafe Madeleine Paris, which is about 12 minutes on foot from the corner of Rue Royale and Place de la Concorde. The food was okay and it was definitely a “we are starving and this place is open and available” stop.

Posted by
10308 posts

Your neighborhood has either famous high-end restaurants or some catering to the working lunch crowd that close eves and weekends.
Edit The Grand Cafe des Capucines certainly looks like the place to go.based on the numerous recommendations below by others. I didn’t know it. It's similar to what you can find in Montparnasse. I'd ignore what I wrote.

If you are returning by train, you can find some large cafés/ brasseries across the street from the St. Lazare train station.
If you are being driven, you can asked to be dropped off near Montparnasse where you will find many restaurants open even on Sunday nights, such as Leon de Bruxelles, pizzerias/ Italian, hamburger places. The large brasserie, La Coupole, or the restaurants Le Dôme and La Rotunde would probably need reservations for six. It would be harder to squeeze 6 into the crepe restaurants.
Or, the Latin Quarter is filled with Greek, Asian, and sandwich places open every evening.
BTW, Easter week has a lot of European tourists visiting Paris.

Posted by
48 posts

Wow I was encouraged by a friend to come to this website for great travel information, and it did not disappoint! Thank you so much to everyone who took the time to respond. And to the traveler who suggested we have our guide take us to dinner on the drive back....I am operating on the assumption that he will be quite sick of us at the point and ready to dump us and run ;)

Posted by
3774 posts

If you get dropped off in the Montparnasse area, you may want to try Bouillon Chartier. The food ranges from mediocre to awful but the experience could be fun and they do not take reservations so that could work with your plans. If you are going to be dropped off in an area as opposed to at your accommodations, your choices are many because as kerouac2 noted, many places serve until 10 PM. For example, a couple of years ago, I and a group of four others who were staying on Rue de Clichy wandered into Le Wepler on Place de Clichy at around 10 PM and were seated and ate a good (not great) meal. The same thing happened but with a group of four in 2019 at L'Europeen over near Gare de Lyon. These places are so large that I think you can almost always get a table.

Posted by
10308 posts

I agree with JHK. At Place de Clichy you will find several larger restaurants. In addition to the Brasserie l'Européen across from the Gare de Lyon, there's a chain Alsacian restaurant, and the traditional Train Bleu inside the station.

Posted by
33140 posts

of course for the Train Bleu the pockets will need to be deep

Posted by
1340 posts

I echo kerouac2, Le Grand Café Capucines is amazing. Beautiful, too.

Posted by
7007 posts

No need to go as far as Montparnasse for a meal ; Grand Café Capucines will do the trick, it is walkable to your hotel, and it is not outrageously expensive.

Posted by
4554 posts

as a rule, can't you always find someplace to eat in a major train station? I suppose Les Halles will also have dining options.

Posted by
8173 posts

FWIW. the Chartier Bouillons in my experience have decent enough food -- and a huge selection. Of course this is microwaved but it is 'traditional' dishes, cheap and they are open till late. Not gourmet but a good 'arrived late and hungry' option.