One of the first things people ask me about living in France is always about food.
Without fail, everyone wants to know about the food (and wine). Whether they’ve just found out I moved here or they’ve known for a while and are checking in to see how it’s going, there will inevitably be a question about what I’ve been eating, how is the cheese, have you had a lot of croissants…
So I’ve assembled a few of the places I’ve eaten in the last month for a quick Restaurant Round-Up!
In the month of October, we visited a few restaurants, though surprisingly fewer than I think most of you would expect. We’ve eaten at home quite a bit (our own and Frenchman’s parents’ home while we were there) and have been keeping the restaurants to a minimum what with all our trips coming up that we’d like to reserve some money for.
So here you go, the October Restaurant Guide – this month’s round-up of where I’ve eaten and how it was!
Le Casse Noix – We found this place online and tried once to go for dinner but couldn’t get in. Though it was fairly early and there were empty tables, they said they were all booked up without a reservation. We went back for lunch with a reservation the next week and it was delicious. It’s obviously a very local/family/regular place as everyone seemed to know everyone else and the kitchen staff. Always a good sign.
The menu was fairly large (in a good way) with an array of options for both type of food as well as menu style (prix fixe, a la carte, other special prix fixe). This place also offered the most beautiful dessert I’ve ever seen:
Comptoir Moderne – We had high hopes for this one to be our go-to brunch destination. Though the restaurant was – I kid you not – completely empty 20 minutes after opening, they seemed put out that we didn’t have a reservation and struggled to find a place to put us. (In the end, the place was never full, not sure what all the fuss was about!) The decor was cool, ambiance nice, I liked that you ordered your brunch menu but hot beverages and charcuteries were serve-yourself on the bar.
The meals, however, were not great. Overworked would be the best description, with the number of different odd things on the platter, none of which were good and none of which worked together at all. They’re obviously trying for something cool but totally missed the mark. Won’t be going back – the search for brunch continues.
Cote de Mer – Not at all recommended. This place is in Deauville, not Paris, and the reviews on TripAdvisor/Yelp were the most misleading I’ve ever encountered. The wait staff was indifferent, at best; one never even spoke, the other (the owner?) never told us the specials until after we had already ordered. Food was mediocre but the service was appalling. A full 50 minutes went by between my entree/app and the arrival of our main dishes. Well over an hour/hour and a half after we had arrived at the restaurant before we could eat our meals. And they were meh. Our desserts arrived fairly promptly after that, but the moelleux au chocolat was anything but moelleux (instead dry and just cakey) and the crème brûlée was fridge-cold. By the time we left we were still slightly hungry and in crappy moods. (Thankfully next we headed over to the casino for free champagne!)
La Bolée Normande – This gem, on the other hand, was a very pleasant surprise. We stumbled on this creperie/galleterie as we wandered around the hills and “back” streets in Trouville. Really affordable prices, fantastic menu choices, and very welcoming, friendly staff. Our orders were delicious and we were so pleased that we ordered dessert too even though we meant to only have a quick lunch. Our dessert crepes were delicious.
No photos because we couldn’t wait that long. We ate it all before I even thought of taking pictures! Instead, here’s a pretty view from nearby.
Bacco – In my first solo venture out of the apartment, I met someone for lunch just a quick walk around the block. This place is a bit pricey at first glance (28€ for most of their main dishes) but their lunch formule is just 19€ for entree – plat or plat – dessert. My lunch partner got the app, we both had a delicious risotto, and I finished the meal with a tasty dessert. All really nice, except the lunch formule menu isn’t written anywhere inside so you’re left to hope you hear the waiter correctly when he tells you your options in rapid-fire French. I would go back, and hope my ears were tuned in really well, otherwise I’m in for another Mystery Meal.
I am also obligated to mention the “Best Restaurant of All” which is my own apartment where Frenchman “cooks” salad. They are most excellent salads full of lettuce and salady things. Written under duress.
We’ve done raclette, and I even mostly figured out the strange oven/microwave contraption (thanks to googling the serial numbers for an English-language manual) and managed to make a few real meals. #Proud. We have also gone out for a drink here and there or gotten a quick dessert, but those didn’t make the list since I can’t speak to those places as a whole.