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L’Assiette

With its worn wooden tables, intricately painted ceilings, and charcuterie slicer propped on the marble counter, L'Assiette has the precise look of a dream Paris bistro. It also serves many of the classic dishes, like escargots and cassoulet, which have mostly disappeared from the city's restaurants. The far-flung location in the 14th arrondissement, near the Catacombs but far from the center, has probably helped L'Assiette to stay off the tourist radar. Chef David Rathgeber and his team are friendly with visitors but don't cater to them. The customers who come to indulge in this hearty fare are mostly local, which makes this a great option for tourists looking to avoid their own countrymen.

Le Severo

Practical information

Address: 8 rue des Plantes, 75014
Nearest transport: Mouton Duvernet (4), Pernety (13)
Hours: Closed Saturday and Sunday; Open Monday-Friday for lunch and dinner
Reservations: Book a few days in advance
Telephone: 01 45 40 40 91
Average price for lunch: 20-39€
Average price for dinner: 40-59€
Style of cuisine: Classic French
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Reviews of interest

Simon Says (2015) “Si l’on veut manger une bonne viande à Paris, c’est ici. Même les deux bouchers « stars » qu’une fausse inimitié savamment alimentée oppose (Hugo Desnoyer et Yves-Marie Le Bourdonnec) sont d’accord là-dessus.”

Alexander Lobrano (2012) “… the best steakhouse in Paris…the charcuterie is one great reason to come here, and the sharp knives and good bread, two others… I come here to eat a pavé de rumsteak from nearby butcher Hugo Desnoyer… with a tiny magic mountain of some of the best frites in the whole world.”

John Talbott (2011) “Severo/Desnoyer’s beef is not for the faint of heart or wallet, running one 80 E for two – but it is the Gold Standard and the method of making the frites should be required reading for the chefs at the other 39,999 restos in the ville.”

Alexander Lobrano via David Lebovitz (2009) “… all will be forgiven when your steak arrives. Owner William Bernet used to work for the Boucheries Nivernaises, one of the best butchers in Paris…”

David Lebovitz (2006) “… worth the trek for the excellent meal…”

Falstaff

Amid the multitude of crêperies on this little street sits this good old-fashioned beer bar. It's cozy and bustling, with classic rock on the stereo, beer-friendly eats, and maybe, just maybe, NFL football on TV. Service is speedy and well-informed, and the hooks along the walls and bar are appreciated by purse-carriers and coat-wearers everywhere. In addition to the 13 beers on tap, you'll find 120 different bottled beers. Prices are a little steep, but the convivial ambiance and tasty Belgian beers are certainly worth a splurge now and then.

La Cave des Papilles

Since opening in 2001, La Cave des Papilles has risen to become arguably the most dynamic, well-stocked, and brilliantly-curated natural wine shop in Paris. Its daffodil-colored exterior displays made-to-measure posters of the cult winemakers featured at the shop’s regular tastings. Founder Gerard Katz and partners Florian Aubertin and Aurélian Brugnau enjoy an industry pre-eminence that ensures a healthy supply of rare and allocated bottles among the shops 1200+ selections. Prices are fair and despite the shop’s deserved reputation for support of more-than-organic farming and low-sulfur vinification, the selection remains broad-minded enough to please even more conservative palates. Keep an ear open for the shop’s occasional block parties, which reliably feature jazz bands, fresh-shucked oysters, and a who’s-who of France’s natural wine community.

Aux Enfants Gâtés

Practical information

Address: 4 rue Danville, 75014
Nearest transport: Denfert-Rochereau (4, 12, RER B), Gaîté (13)
Hours: Closed Sunday and Monday; Open Tuesday-Friday for lunch and dinner, plus Saturday dinner.
Reservations: Book a few days in advance
Telephone:  01 40 47 56 81
Average price for lunch: 20-39€
Average price for dinner: 40-59€
Style of cuisine: Modern French
Website   Facebook

Reviews of Interest

John Talbott (2014) “An unexpected but gloriously tasty amuse gueule of cold green asparagus soup… a slightly less impressive array of sweetbread morsels (why less impressive? – because while crisp on the outside they were not as moist as I like them on the inside.”

Alexander Lobrano (2014) “Precise modern bistro cooking with beautifully sourced and vividly fresh produce… the perfect retort to the ongoing kerfuffle about whether French food is still good anymore or needs to be saved or some such… I couldn’t help by being moved by the deep desire to please and nourish that so clearly motivates the admirably proud, hard-working and hospitable Bidaults.”

Le Figaro (2014) “Avec cette placidité provinciale qui fait le climat de derrière Denfert, une jeune auberge qui s’y entend à cuisiner le simple. Bonne copie classique : produit net, recette claire, assiette sans rature. On n’en demande parfois pas plus…”

Photo courtesy of Aux Enfants Gâtés website

Le Dôme

Practical information

Address: 108 boulevard du Montparnasse, 75014
Nearest transport: Vavin (4), Edgar Quinet (6)
Hours: Open every day for lunch and dinner
Reservations: Book a day or two in advance
Telephone: 01 43 35 25 81
Website   Book Online

What people are saying

Not Drinking Poison in Paris (2015) “The upside of a city that trades on history, however, is the persistence of such majestic creations as Le Dôme’s airy millefeuille, gargantuan portions of which are hacked off a tree-trunk-sized whole that the servers parade around the restaurant with justifiable pride.”

Simon Says (2015) “C’est une sorte de grosse bestiole. Qui ne bouge pas… On y vient ici s’offrir les poissons du jour, les plateaux de fruits de mer écumant d’iode. C’est impeccable, un peu roué dans la passation de commande où l’on aime bien pousser le bouchon. Mais qu’importe, si l’on a réservé ici, c’est que l’on savait exactement où l’on allait. Sans trop chercher, on atteint avec une aisance déconcertante une addition à 200 euros pour deux personnes.”

Condé Nast Traveler (2015) “I don’t eat fancy food, so most of my recommendations are for bistros and other elbows on-the-table sorts of places—like this one, where Hemingway met painter Jules Pascin, commemorating their story in A Moveable Feast. Here, the fish is still prepared in an old-school way (i.e., filleted tableside) and the maître d’s still wear tuxedos.”

Dorie Greenspan (2008) “Whenever I see a big metal platter with a mound of crushed ice and a pile of oysters, clams, shrimp, langoustines and other precious shellfish, I imagine that I’m in Paris in the 1920s… my favorite place to enjoy this luxury – and is it ever a luxury (especially now with the dollar so weak) – is at Le Dome…”

Photo courtesy of Patricia Wells’ website

Le Dome in video

Anthony Bourdain’s Paris episode for “The Layover.” The segment on Le Dome begins around the 27:00 mark.