49 Rue Volta, 3rd
You'd walk right by this nondescript sliver of a restaurant if you didn't know it was there. A smattering of oversize gold candlesticks, artfully dilapidated tile walls, perfectly gilded mirrors, slabs of marble, and rickety chairs will make you feel like you're eating in someone's wonderfully loved kitchen. And this kitchen just happens to serve Argentinian steaks accompanied by creamy guacamole, beans and rice, and heaping amounts of side salad.
32 Rue Saint Marc, 2nd
Alain Ducasse’s Aux Lyonnais is one of those traditional French dining experiences that manages to deftly skirt stuffiness. The old-world façade still has the original sign from the restaurant’s 1914 debút, and the belle époque interior (mirrored walls, intricate tile floors, and an original wooden staircase) feels straight out of central casting. The menu changes seasonally—they offer a prix fixe as well as a la carte.
27 Rue du Dragon, 6th
This cozy spot in the 6th is open through the entire month of August, and we’re grateful for that because their dishes are a perfect showcase of France’s summer garden bounty. Their burrata starter comes with fresh cherry tomatoes and a pistachio pesto, and their brunch dishes (yes, that means French toast and crêpes) revolve around around summer raspberries and strawberries.
Bistro aux Vieux Chene (Closed)
7 Rue du Dahomey, 11th
If Bistro Paul Bert is too busy (which is often the case), grab a seat at the zinc bar here. It’s friendlier, much less hyped, and specializes in reliably wonderful bistro classics at always reasonable prices.
74 Rue des Gravilliers, 3rd
At lunch, Bob’s is overrun with health-conscious Parisians who sidle up to the communal tables for salads, veggie stews, and cold-pressed juice.
28 Rue Henry Monnier, 9th
It takes nerve (and talent) for an American to take a French concept and recreate it for a famously hard-to-please Parisian audience. In chef Jody William’s case, her French-inspired wine bar, Buvette, has been adopted with open arms. She tested the concept in New York first—there is a much-loved West Village outpost—and exported her “gastrotheque” back to Paris in 2013, to rave reception. In this romantic, perfectly Parisian little wine bar, you can expect a wonderful cocktail and wine list, and a petite menu of small versions of dishes like Coq Au Vin and Moules and Tartines. They also serve several local, seasonal salads—good ones are still a hard to find in many traditional French restos.
38 Rue de Bretagne, 3rd
This bustling bistro is particularly great for late dinners and brunch: The menu is nice and succinct, offering the classics you want after a few glasses of wine. You’ll find steak au cheval, steak tartare, a selection of burgers, and a sampling of salads, plus a small wine list mostly offered by the carafe. This is one of the few places open on Sunday.
Café de Flore
172 Boulevard Saint Germain, 6th
This classic Parisian Art Deco café on the corner of Boulevard Saint-Germain has played host to everyone from Sartre to Picasso. They came for the coffee and the people-watching, as should you: When the weather’s nice, find a spot on the outdoor patio and get a big café au lait and an omelette.
58 Rue du Faubourg Poissonnière, 10th
The focus here is on California-style, organic vegetarian fare; healthy, wheat-free, veggie-centric dishes that don’t skimp on taste. The interior is all wood floors, stone walls, and mix-and-match seating. Come for lunch on weekdays, as dinner can get a little hectic. There's another location in the 4th.
6 Rue du Forez, 3rd
The focus here is on California-style, organic vegetarian fare; healthy, wheat-free, veggie-centric dishes that don’t skimp on taste. The interior is all wood floors, stone walls, and mix-and-match seating. Come for lunch on weekdays, as dinner can get a little hectic. There's another location in the 10th.
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