Vivant 2

While a chorus of Bonsoir, bienvenue! still sounds the moment you walk through the door at Vivant 2, these days, it’s underscored by a bop-filled soundtrack and service with a smile that make a seat at the open kitchen’s wrap-around bar feel more inviting than austere. Chef Rob Mendoza is a champion of delicate, plant-focused fare, his luscious, creative moles drape anything and everything from broccoli to Bresse hen. Elsewhere, he effortlessly blends international ingredients with French terroir: House-made potato flatbread is spread thickly with tahini and blanketed with swiss chard; tuna is served with a Korean gochujang-spiked tomato broth. This restaurant is a great option for vegetarians and is open on Monday nights. A curated list of natural and sustainable wines seals the deal.

Massale

The 11th arrondissement may be flooded with phenomenal restaurants, but the seasonal menu at Massale stands out with far meatier market-driven options than most other spots leaning into the plant-based trend. Fish and seafood nevertheless abound here, and the wine list features specialties from France’s Jura and beyond.

Le Servan

Tatiana Levha, formerly at L’Arpège and L’Astrance, and her sister Katia opened this light, airy bistro with a central bar & hand painted ceiling. The short list of offerings changes each day, but expect seasonally driven cuisine inflected with international touches like tandoori spiced beurre blanc atop asparagus or harissa to spice up the line caught hake. Dessert left room for improvement, but otherwise Le Servan had reasonably priced, expertly executed dishes and friendly service in a beautiful space.

David Toutain

David Toutain, who brought acclaim to Agapé Substance before jumping ship back in December 2012, returned to the Paris scene with this signature restaurant in 2013. His meticulous and conceptual cooking highlights seasonal produce, with vegetables often playing the starring role. This is by no means a vegetarian restaurant, but Toutain’s ability to bring out the beauty in oft-ignored roots reminds us of his former boss Alain Passard.

Holybelly

Pancakes, poached eggs and hearty seasonal fare served alongside excellent coffee sourced from Belleville Brulerie in a sunny space along the Canal St. Martin. An international array of coffee preparations (flat whites, espressos, long blacks, cappuccinos, and very good “real deal” filtered coffee) are accompanied by hot chocolate made from homemade chocolate syrup and a selection of teas from Le Parti du Thé.

Alléno Paris au Pavillon Ledoyen

This historic three-star restaurant is perched in a pavilion just off the Champs-Elysées and has been a dining destination since the French Revolution. Long-time chef Christian Le Squer handed the reigns to Yannick Alleno in July 2014, and Alleno has promised a renewed focus on what he considers to be the great strength of French cuisine – sauces.

FTG

Just down the street from the impossible to get into Frenchie, you can complete the Gregory Marchand hat trick at the latest outpost from the renowned Frenchie chef. The Anglo-inspired eatery features excellent Reubens, flavorful fish and chips, sweet treats like cheesecake and doughnuts, housemade ginger beer, pickles & maple smoked bacon, and one of the best beer lists we’ve seen in Paris.

Candelaria

With its bright, bare-bones kitchen, crowded counter, communal table, and addictive salsas — all mercifully un-Frenchified — this upper Marais spot has officially changed the game, and people are lining up for tacos and agua fresca. Go through the unmarked door next to the stove and you’ll find a serious bar, staffed by Experimental Cocktail Club grads.