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Best Restaurants in Paris

Our meal at David Toutain was actually one of the weaker meals we had.

July 9th is not that far away for booking a hot restaurant. Many restaurants I've booked are full unless you book 1 month in advance.

Meals we enjoyed:

Les 110 de Taillevent 1* -Seriously amazing food - same owners as 3* Taillevent. The vol-au-vent was more than perfect.

Sola
French Japanese. 1*
Most dishes we had were very flavourful and well though out.

Passage 53
Very clean, light delicate food. Service was very professional. It is a very small and very formal setting. The food was very Japanese with french cooking techniques.

Chez L'Ami Jean
Though no dish was particularly amazing, the meal overall was quite enjoyable with a lot of quirkiness. The chef, Jego, started shouting halfway through service. The entire restaurant was watching on as the open kitchen was in full view of everyone. Seating is literally elbow to elbow with tables having to be pulled out to get into your seat. Gluttonistic - he really does try to make you leave knowing you couldn't possibly eat any more. If you don't feel full after all the savoury courses, there is still *the* rice pudding that comes at the end.

Cheaper meals we really enjoyed:

Savoury and sweet crepes at Breizh Cafe

L'As du falafel

Jun 23, 2014
quddous in France
1

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

I think the curries and other mains are more special though the pad thai is still good. We usually get the curry with the longan in it.

May 13, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

One of my favourite things lately has been the salted caramel cream puff from Beta 5. You can reserve it ahead of time and I would recommend that as they run out often. Not sure if they are open but you can check their hours online. Their chocolates make a really nice gift - the packaging is simple but really nice.

You could get a banh mi from Au Petite Cafe for the flight.. which might be what I will do next time I have I have a flight myself.

Maenam - everything is really quite good. I really enjoyed the salad with chicken crackelings last time but not sure if that was a regular menu item or just a special.

Their roti and thai iced tea are just okay. They take reservations (and they are usually quite busy so I would recommend reserving).

May 13, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

I don't know if I have mentioned but Hai Phong has fish sauce chicken wings (not on the menu) which are really delicious. They remind me of the wings from Pok Pok but much more authentic.

Will have to try that fish dish at Kalvin's next time.

May 12, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

We went to Peaceful just this past week and enjoyed it but it seems to cater to western crowds more than trying to be authentic.

That being said, we enjoyed the lamb with cilantro and bean sauce (a bit on the sweet side) , the green peppered chicken (too much soy sauce - salty), and I liked that they had knife cut noodles - always something I enjoy.

May 12, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

You can make reservations at Phnom Penh.

Kalvin's -
Taiwanese meat sauce rice
Eggplant with chili and garlic
Chicken with cashew (it's not like most other places)

If they have tong choy get it.

Everything there is quite good. I used to like their XLB but haven't had it in some time.

We always order too much (on purpose) and just give the leftovers to homeless people on the way home.

May 12, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Better than Peartree?

I've been to Pear Tree twice and was disappointed both times. The problem on the last visit was that most if not all dishes tasted like bacon.

Vancouver has very few good options for great dining.

Two I can offer would be: La Quercia, Vij's, not sure where else.

Although I do like Octopus Garden, their quality to price ratio is good at all. The quality is about the same as Ajisai and prices are about double if not more (from what I see at the end of our meals). I haven't left Octopus Garden with a bill for less than $200 for 2 - Ajisai is typically about $40-$70 for 2.

May 09, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Recent closures - surprised ?

Kits Daily is for sale. (ie soon to be closed)

May 09, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Green garbanzos in greater Vancouver?

They have them at some Indian grocery stores in the summer (if I remember right)

I bought some from Fruticana last year.

May 09, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)
1

3 Days from Toronto - Kelowna, Okanagan and Vancouver

Phnom Penh - chicken wings, beef luc lac, hot and sour tamarind soup, cambodian stew, butter beef

Pidgin - interesting but I would just drop by and have 1 or 2 dishes max. I think the food has good technique but most of the flavours don't pair well. The one dish we liked was the sea urchin with cauliflower puree.

Espana - Really good tapas. One of our favourites.

Blue Water - Standard high end with good seafood options.

Acorn - Pretty amazing for a vegetarian place in Vancouver. The food is hearty and delicious enough for a meat eater.

Hawskworth - I really don't think this place was that good. We had the tasting and I really don't remember one dish I had (ie unmemorable).

Wildebeest - Not bad - interesting space, interesting food. but there is better.

L'Abattoir - used to be one of my favourites but haven't been there in ages. Very modern cooking. Nice plating, nice space, good servers, good food.

Maenam - Good. Mains are very different from other Thai restaurants.

Santouka - The only ramen restaurant we go to in Vancouver - If you don't have a Santouka in TO and are craving good ramen then I would go. Get the Aka miso with pork cheek.

Meat and Bread - good/interesting sandwiches - very cool spaces (2 locations now) - If you are going to be nearby then I would pop in but wouldn't go out of my way for it.

Vij's in Vancouver or Poppadums in Kelowna (do not ask for spicy) - both so delicious

We also love the restaurant at Mission Hill for the view and the space (long narrow corridor open on both sides to views)

Momofuku Shoto and Khao San Road (yum)

May 09, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)
1

Advice for the (not so) lonely tummy - one meal left in Vancouver - Chinese? Hoi Tong vs. Kelvin's vs. Chongqing Japanese?

HK BBQ master for lunch. I've had some decent bbq there in the past but the last time we went was phenomenal.

I still like Fisherman's Terrace. It is still our favourite Cantonese restaurant (typically for dim sum though we have had dinner there also). Sea harbour is still good but not as good as it was in its old location. We've also been to Jade seafood twice recently for dimsum. Very good flavours but Fisherman's still seems more delicate.

We go to Kalvin's quite often though they are Taiwanese not Sichuanese. Their food is just very good homecooking.

I would recommend trying Ajisai - get their seared pressed hamachi sushi.

Get the special banh mi from Au Petite cafe - I think their pork meatballs are pretty darn special - most tender meatballs ever.

I used to really be against Vij's and Maenam but I really like both now. We tend to go to Vij's about 9:30pm when the line has died down. Both offer dishes which are quite different from what you would get at other typical Indian or Thai restaurants.

(I still think Vij's needs to improve their naan and rice. Both quite disappointing but their food more than makes up for the other things which are lacking.)

May 09, 2014
quddous in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Industrial Strength Restaurant Meals

Just like everything in the world, this debate isn't black and white.

1) There are exceptional frozen ingredients.

2) Sometimes frozen ingredients are used to save costs.

3) Sometimes dried or frozen ingredients are better than fresh ingredients (taste, texture, quality, etc)

I like that in France, you can only call yourself a boulangerie if you make the dough and bake the bread on the premises. I think this concept really helps to keep the traditional French lifestyle alive. It is very easy to forget traditions in the modern world.

I think the big question shouldn't be between fresh, dried or frozen ingredients but more so making food in store versus reheating foods made offsite.

Jan 30, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

We are going for lunch. I have read up on both and realize they are quite different animals.

I have reservations at both Le Cinq and L'Epicure booked and they seem to offer similar experience (obviously the food would differ); my wife prefers L'Epicure from what she has read and seen. I am also quite wary of eating at both of these two because we may be too full after each meals to do anything after (both lunch and a few days apart).

Jan 29, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

You are great, John. I've had a lot of fun reading your posts in older threads. all your responses along with wisdom and experience are greatly appreciated.

It was still a question. I removed Paul Bert and Le Chateaubriand due to too many mixed reviews. I have read some bad reviews of L'Arpege as well but yours is the first post on this thread to point it out as a weaker choice.

It's quite hard to dig through reviews and ratings and have an unbiased judgement towards which restaurants will be truly amazing and which are good with an amazing amount of hype.

I felt this way about Yamtcha for a while and am still unsure of it. I typically don't like Asian food cooked by non Asians (not that I haven't enjoyed some).

Also, I remember seeing that you ranked Sola quite highly in 2011. I didn't notice it on the newer lists you had though.

What do you think about Passage 53 over Le Cinq?

Jan 29, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

I used La Fourchette for quite a few of my reservations actually. Septime, Saturne, Sola, and Le Cinq were all booked using that system.

On that note, I think my current list looks quite different than it did originally.

L'Epicure
Saturne
Septime
Passage 53 (Cancelling Le Cinq for this)
Spring
David Toutain
Yamtcha
Sola
Le Comptoir du Relais
Josephine Chez Dumonet
CLJ
Hugo Desnoyer
L'Arpege

Jan 29, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary recommendations - London

I've taken Tayyabs off. I'm surprised that so many have said they don't like it on this thread - it had many strong supporters on the threads about Indian food.

Jan 26, 2014
quddous in U.K./Ireland

Best non-fusion Italian in Rome

I am happy with any cuisine that is Italian. I still haven't experienced enough Italian food to be able to differentiate between the dishes of different regions. I dont mind fusion. I may eat at one of those fusion restaurants I named but I would prefer traditional for most meals.

Which other restaurants do you recommend?

Jan 24, 2014
quddous in Italy

Best non-fusion Italian in Rome

kmzed: I hadn't even noticed the hamburger on the Roscioli Menu - I am sure that is there to please foreigners. I'm going for their pastas, cheeses and meats. I agree that many Family run restaurants try their best to get good ingredients straight from farmers. I want the best of these; people who are sourcing the best cheeses, best olive oils, and best meats sourced locally, regionally or nationally. I didn't mean international; If I wanted Spanish olives, wine, cheeses, meat or olive oil I would go to Spain.

I own food businesses from wholesale to retail to restaurants. I have seen many of my customers and know how restaurants function; one of the basic tenets of running restaurant is the need to be economical - I've even seen Joe Bastianich who owns some of the most expensive Italian restaurants (Del Posto, Babbo, Osteria Mozza, etc) say this. At my own restaurant we use lower grades of meat to be able to match our price point; the food still tastes great but could be better, or much better depending on your taste, given a price increase. I want restaurants that aren't too restricted by low prices so they can afford to pay for better ingredients and have the knowledge and expertise to use these ingredients. The Roscioli's seem to fit this bill. La Pergola, Imago, or Glass Hosteria seem to have the knowledge but their food looks too fusion.

Elizabeth: Yes. Straight forward cooking, traditional. I don't mind the chefs using good/fancy techniques as long as the dishes are traditional (ie sous vide). Cesare al Casaletto was second on my list of places!

My list is as follows:

I haven't had too much time to update it recently, but the list is basically in order of preference

Roscioli
Cesare al Casaletto
La Gensola
Perilli
Colline Emiliane
Armando al Pantheon
Sora Margherita
Trattoria Monti
Corsetti 1921
Pierluigi
Agustarello
La Campana
Checchino dal 1887
Tempio di Iside

Jan 24, 2014
quddous in Italy

Looking for a dining partner?

Agree. Not crazy at all! It's fun travelling and having solo dinners but also nice to meet new people and have some interesting conversations. It doesn't hurt that you can order and try more food too.

We would have met up but we are not there until February 10th. Good luck on finding a dining partner!

Jan 23, 2014
quddous in Italy

Best non-fusion Italian in Rome

What are your favourite non-fusion restaurants which know exactly what they are doing and are sourcing high quality ingredients? I like mom and pop shops and family run restaurants; they do rustic flavours well but they usually don't have the best ingredients.

The one place I have found so far that fits these criteria is Roscioli.

Jan 23, 2014
quddous in Italy

If I Can't Get into Le Chateaubriand, What to Substitute Based on...

How were all your meals?

Jan 23, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

Thanks for the lists everyone.

Jan 23, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

Me :) and I will have some other delicious things along the way.

I also supply many restaurants and hope to have my own fastfood chain someday. So it isn't all about the flavour or the food quality when visiting some places but also understanding how and why they became and are so popular.

That being said I'm having a hard time finding somewhere to my liking for Sunday dinner. I've been through all the threads and websites but haven't been able to find anywhere suitable.

Frenchie, Le Chateaubriand, Septime, Abri, Le Comptoir du Relais, La table d'Aki are all closed Sunday.

Currently Reserved
Chez L'Ami Jean
L'Arpege
Le Cinq
L'Epicure
Saturne
Yamtcha (may cancel to book something else)
David Toutain
Bistrot Paul Bert
Josephine Chez Dumonet

Jan 23, 2014
quddous in France

Please Critique our Paris Itinerary December 2013

John, what are your favourites out of those Japanese cooking french food? I've seen you list these quite often but I can't discern which do you like best? (and what about best with no price limit?)

Jan 22, 2014
quddous in France

Paris Restaurants On The Rise

I think Michelin does a much better job (than Pellegrino) of helping the restaurant community as a whole. It may be flawed but I still think they are doing a magnificent job. I think the amount of time and effort they put in pre internet was phenomenal.

The one big flaw that I find is that the same restaurants keep getting attention; but this happens everywhere including here on chowhound where many restaurants are lauded constantly while others are barely mentioned at all.

Jan 21, 2014
quddous in France

Paris Restaurants On The Rise

I agree about the comment about Parnassien. The same could be said about you too, John. Thank you both for all the helpful information.

Jan 20, 2014
quddous in France

Paris Restaurants On The Rise

"The impetus behind my question is I am looking for Michelin level dining at pre-star prices."

Redsox: Try looking up Abri and Frenchie.

Jan 20, 2014
quddous in France

Paris Restaurants On The Rise

I think what everyone is debating over is a technicality of the wording of the question.

The OP is asking which restaurants offer the same level ingredients, preparations, uniqueness, experience of a great restaurant at affordable prices. Restaurants that are a good value to quality ratio.

To the OP, I would recommend giving a price range and what kind of food you would like or examples of restaurants you are thinking about visiting.

I would look into lunch at one starred restaurants. Some have 3 courses for about 30

Here is a link to a similar question on quora.

http://www.quora.com/Paris/What-are-t...

Jan 20, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

I wasn't offended except by fishskis comment "But the masses don't know any better, or don't care".

I'm sorry if it came off as me being defensive but I found that comment very rude.

I'm thankful to all who have made recommendations.

Jan 20, 2014
quddous in France

Itinerary Advice and Questions - Paris

I agree that many internationally renowned restaurants have much more hype than they deserve - even the good ones. They may not be the "best in the world" nor even the best even in their respective city, but there is always some factor or factors which keeps them popular and busy. Some are overhyped disappointments (Joe Beef) while others are truly amazing (Au Pied de Cochon).

I asked for advice for a reason. If I wanted to go to these restaurants blindly, I would have done so without asking.

Jan 20, 2014
quddous in France