Giannis's Profile

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French Macaroons - alternative to Bottega Louie?

First time I hear Bottega Louie and googled them. They seem nice. How are these compared to Laduree? This time i shopped laduree it was about 3.5usd each or 2.5 euros each in boxes of 6 and 14.

Mar 22, 2014
Giannis in Los Angeles Area

Paris: Best Foodie Neighborhood?

Sure. If i feel uncomfrotable about others that proved not to be able to unterstand me, I ll take the easy way of speaking english.

Mar 20, 2014
Giannis in France

Paris: Best Foodie Neighborhood?

I can speak French, but always communicate in english. Maybe its after a rude and ironic behavior of a waiter at Angelina some years ago..

In no places I had problem communicate in english. In Munich yeah. Paris or France no.

Excuse me, it was Gare d l est. Not far away for gare du nord.

Mar 20, 2014
Giannis in France

Paris: Best Foodie Neighborhood?

I too have never got any safety problem in Paris.

Everyday we walked from champs elysees to Opera, or Louvre and back to Invalides etc at 3 o clock after midnight and saw nothing. Maybe we were just lucky, but in Paris I felt safe. In Lyon on the other hand near the part dieu etc was a different story.

My first time in Paris (school trip) I was staying near gare du nord, which was not a good location. But in the city centre and metro, no problem at all.

Mar 20, 2014
Giannis in France

Michel Roux to quit Masterchef & the BBC in row over his potato adverts

I really enjoy seeing him cooking. I have watched everything on youtube.

Mar 15, 2014
Giannis in U.K./Ireland

Mykonos/Naxos

I cant help you about specific restaurants as I havent been there. I would suggest you to try the local food and especially any fish roasted over charcoal. Aegean sea is full of extraordinairy fish. The best fish you can find is Sfyrida(epinephelus aeneus). Then some other amazing fishes are synagrida, rofos, tsipoura. Be aware that most big fishes are expensive per kilo.

Mar 15, 2014
Giannis in Europe

Ledoyen - dining room

Just a few months ago that the lunch menu was 88 it was a bargain for the reasons mentioned. Now at 128 for lunch it is average. The decouverte menu is cheaper than Gagnaire Ducasse Passard etc. A la carte it is up there with L Ambroisie and all others.

About the wine I found glasses at 12 or 15 euros at Gagnaire. while at Ramsay's in London (different story) there were half bottles at the price of the glass at Ledoyen. I didnt look at the wine book at all though.

One think for sure, I will always remember the time I ate at Ledoyen.

Mar 13, 2014
Giannis in France

Ledoyen - dining room

I guess they heard the complaints and reduced the price of water. I just saw the receipt (i always keep them as souvenirs) and it is really 8 euros per bottle.

Mar 13, 2014
Giannis in France

Jules Verne Eiffel Tower dress code?

Offtopic, but Loro Piana is amazing. Best quality I have ever seen, at least since now that they are bought by LVMH.

Mar 13, 2014
Giannis in France

Ledoyen - dining room

I was there in early December for lunch, booked the same day of the meal and there were about 2 or 3 empty tables.

What surprises me is that you (not you personaly :P ) find the room dated etc. I found the whole setting as for the view location and decoration perfect. It is not modern but it is not meant to be. The service was also as good as it gets.

Piano boy, my friend had the pork (eel as as starter) and had medium impressions from it. I was about to try the seafood macaroni but got the menu decouverte instead with the spaghetti. Do you have any photos of the macaroni with seafood? I would like to see it.

About water, Ledoyen charged us two for 2 bottles of Evian at 8euros each. 16 euros in total. (wine is at 24 to 32 per glass for lunch)

Ducasse at Benoit charged 9 euros per bottle of Evian (although I think bigger bottle than in Ledoyen)

Gagnaire charged also 9 euros per bottle.

Mar 13, 2014
Giannis in France

Jules Verne Eiffel Tower dress code?

I went for lunch wearing just a polo t-shirt (not the brand polo) and I was very good in there.

I guess in some other places like Plaza Athenee or Meurice a suit would be good. Wear a tie only if you like ties.

In Le Louis XV in Monaco as I remember most diners were in suits and ties, but next to me there was an asian guy eating alone with a red casual tshirt. Again it was lunch.

There are very few strict about the dress code places now on earth. I can think of The Ritz in London and some starred restaurants in New York.

Mar 13, 2014
Giannis in France

Ledoyen, Le Cinq or Taillevent for Lunch?

From the 3 you mentioned I have only eaten in Ledoyen. Lunch is now at 128 euros for starter, main cheese and dessert. You can see my review here http://gastrotrips.blogspot.gr/2013/1...

Ledoyen has superb setting and service. Food for me was very good but not amazing.

Le cinq seems to be a safe option.

I would suggest that you look at L'epicure , in Hotel Le Bristol. Havent been there too, but it is first on my list for the next time in Paris. All comments are positive for L epicure. I would like to here anyone here with any recent experience. Andy Hayler's review is a bit old now, I think this restaurant has really evolved since then.

Mar 06, 2014
Giannis in France

Paris: Best Foodie Neighborhood?

The previous time I stayed right in Champs Elysees, great location for walking around but not much as for foodies.

The last time I stayed in rue Cler. It was very nice, many stores, bakeries, groceries, cheese shops etc. I could smell poultry and liver in the morning.

Mar 04, 2014
Giannis in France

Best dinner in Basel

I know the Cheval Blanc in the Hotel Le trois rois, located in the most central place. 2 michelin stars and nice view to the river.

Mar 03, 2014
Giannis in Europe

Greece Restaurants

I would agree that you should surely avoid the most touristy restaurants in Plaka, Monastiraki, Thiseio, as they are expensive for what you get(pretty much frozen food).

In Greece the expensive restaurants usually serve foreigh inspired food, so I wont mention any molecular, frech haute cuisine ones with stars or not.

I dont live in Athens, but I visit it often, so I ll speak about the places I have chosen to eat thus far.

As you will stay near the amazing Acropolis Museum, you can have a lunch there. The cooking is Greek, not excellent but I found it pretty good. You can see a small sample here http://gastrotrips.blogspot.gr/2013/09/acropolis-museum-athens.html

In Thiseio, there is only one restaurant worth mentioning called Kuzina. What worths is the view from the opened terrace with direct view to the Acropolis. Food is modern. I suggest you make a reservation before the meal. 4 course menu for lunch (only i think) was 20 euros pp without wine.

In Chalandri there is a restaurant called Psomi & Alati, by the chef Yannis Loukakos. It is a bit far from your hotel though. In chalandri there is also Botrini's restaurant, starting at 40euros pp.

In Hilton hotel there is a seafood restaurant called Milos Estiatorio. There is one in NY too. It is expensive generaly but there was a good lunch deal at 20 euros pp. I hope it still exists.

Aegli Zappiou, http://www.aeglizappiou.gr/estiatorio... , excellent location and setting, pretty much close to your hotel. You can also see the menu with prices in their site.

If you decide for one meal that would be more expensive, there are 2 restaurants that come to my mind with Greek food. One is Varoulko (1star) by Leuteris Lazarou serving seafood, and the other is Tudor Hall by Sotiris Euaggelou (havent visited but had a meal by the chef and it was amazing). I consider them to be at 50 euros per person without wine.

Wine in Greece is good. (Avoid not bottled, it can be very good but most times is rubbish). I hope they can advise you correctly on what to chose according to price.

In all of these restaurants you will not find mousaka etc, I think these are only for tourists, so available only in places that work 99% by tourists.

Gyros, souvlaki etc, as for greek fast food is on the same level in most places, so just go in what you ll find on your way.

If you find any greek casual taverna, the pricing is about 15 euros pp, but only if you avoid the touristy areas.

In the islands that you mention, keep in mind fresh big fish can be at 60 euros a kilo, I have seen 80euros too. It is delicious though.

Feb 28, 2014
Giannis in Europe

Greece Restaurants

Can you please put a min and max for the price, so that I can help you for Athens?

Feb 28, 2014
Giannis in Europe

Pizza in basel

I dont remember seeing any places selling pizza while I was in Basel for a week or so. I dont say that there arent, it is just not that common. Maybe then I m wrong, but I remember most places having fondue, or gordon blue, some asian ones too.

The best restaurant has to be Cheval Blanc in the Hotel Le trois rois, 2 michelin stars (18 points in Gault Millau). I didnt have the chance to visit it as it was closed, but went to the other restaurant of the same hotel, (no stars but Gault Millau 13). I remember having an amazing lobster bisque. (Also remember a small bottle of water was about the same price as the lobster soup ).

Feb 28, 2014
Giannis in Europe

2014 Michelin

Any opinions on KIntessence in Courcevel, which got 2 stars this year?

What happend to Senderens? Did they change anything this year, or did they close?

Feb 26, 2014
Giannis in France

Le Cinq: Lunch or Dinner?

Maybe cheese is 10-15 if you order it instead of dessert? I have seen in some London starred restaurants offering cheese instead of dessert for a 10 pounds supp.

In Ledoyen I asked to replace the ris de veau with the spaghetti with blanc truffles.( was 140euros a la carte and couldnt be done in degustation portion which is smaller than if you order a la carte for all courses). The waiter told me they cant do it, unless they charge me more for the 250 euro degustation. So I told him to ask in the kitchen for the final price.

When he came back he told me ''ok sir we can do it for you'' no extra cost.

Feb 24, 2014
Giannis in France
1

2014 Michelin

I was just looking for the new 3star, L assiette champenoise. in Reims. It already had 5 toques by G&M.

Anyone been there?

Feb 24, 2014
Giannis in France

Michelin restaurant for Saturday lunch?

Good point.

May I ask you if you generally dont like any of Ducasse's restaurants? I had my best meal at Le Louis XV, I just have some doubts, if I was so impressed because it was my first time at that calibre. I expected again from other restaurants the same feeling, but neither Ledoyen nor PG did it for me.

Feb 11, 2014
Giannis in France

Michelin restaurant for Saturday lunch?

I think for a tourist that has 2 or 3 meals in Paris the starred places would be the safest choice, as I did myself. Food was my major reason to go back to paris for 3rd time. I had in my mind that I wanted to eat at Gagnaire, Ledoyen, Arpege, Ambroisie etc. I managed to eat at the first two. I dont disagree that you can find better non starred places with maybe better food for a fraction of the cost. Although some places,are more expensive than many 1 starred restaurants.

For me finding good or excellent food is the next step. You have to know the place well and have lived there for some time. I did this to my city. I have found places with better food than in the fancy ones.

Just to make a comparison. When I started being interested in cinema, movies etc I watched so many classical films, many of them boring, some of them great, just cause I had to know about them. You cant be a cinema lover if you havent seen Bergman, Bunuel, Fellini etc. Did I like Dolce Vita? No .. Do I regret spending 3 hours for this film? No way ..

Feb 11, 2014
Giannis in France

Michelin restaurant for Saturday lunch?

Many of the starred places in Paris(if you are interested about Paris) are closed on weekends.

Some remaining open that come to my mind are, Le cinq which regurarly gets the best reviews at 110 euros I think.

Then there is L'epicure, Eric Frechon 3 stars at 135 euros.

1 starred restaurants. Firstly the Le jules verne, of Alain Ducasse which has a lunch menu at 98 euros(maybe it is only on week days). Great view from the Eiffel Tower, but thats it. It is not bad by any means. It is just too expensive for what it is. I still regret how I chose that for my only lunch in paris on that trip, and didnt go for Frechon, Passard etc.

Then there is Benoit, 1 star again of Alain Ducasse with a lunch option available on weekends too at 38 euros. 50 with water and a good glass of wine. I dont know what do you think about it, but I really liked it :)

My review, http://gastrotrips.blogspot.gr/2013/1...

When I visited it, they had run out of tartes so we could choose anything we liked from the regular desserts menu.

Feb 10, 2014
Giannis in France
1

Fish and chips in London, many kinds of fish.

I dont know much about fish n chips. I had a few times in London, I liked the fish in all of them. But would you agree with me about the chips? I couldnt find any place with good chips (handcut, not prefried etc). Even Heston's triple cooked fries were a disapointment.

Feb 10, 2014
Giannis in U.K./Ireland

Favorite train food, knives, mustards from Paris and Reims, Part 3

How can you get the newbought knives back home by the plane? I also wanted to buy a laguiole knife,, but was scared if I would have any problem with it for my flight.

L'Arpege also has a knife for each guest to take home as a souvenir.

Feb 09, 2014
Giannis in France

Alain Ducasse at Le Meurice

Generaly it is expensive. But in Paris and Ducasse where a la carte was the cheapest option for lunch, it was at over 200 euros pp.
The menu consists of:
1. duck ravioli
2.Artichoke black truffle
3. scallops, olive citrus.
4.Saint nectaire
5. Chocolate from manufacteur AD

The price for every 3 star in Paris now is about the same. Frechon is 130, Arpege is 145, Ledoyen is 128, Le cinq even raised the price to over 100 euros. Recently at Gagnaire it was 155 for me excluding beverages, although it was the Christmas menu,(no other lunch menu available).

Ledoyen had 88 euros but when I visited it I was surprised it was now 128 excluding beverages, but cheese included. You can see it here http://gastrotrips.blogspot.gr/2013/1...

Feb 07, 2014
Giannis in France

Alain Ducasse at Le Meurice

Anyone tried the restaurant? I saw a review mentioning how Ducasse did it much better than in Plaza Athenee. There is also a lunch menu now, priced at 130 euros for 3 courses, cheese and dessert which sounds pretty good value for Ducasse and Paris. I m more interested about this lunch option, if its up to the standards of the a la carte. (Degustation in now 3 courses plus cheese dessert, instead of 4 courses plus cheese dessert, at the same price 380 euros). In Monaco at Le Louis XV the lunch menu was amazing, and excellent value at 140 euros, beverages included, with water and half a bottle of wine.

Feb 06, 2014
Giannis in France

Paul Bocuse saint sylvestre menu

No, not yet. I dont live in France and I dont have friends interested in food so it is a bit hard to visit these places.

What I mean in ''I think the Louis XV should take that'' is between the restaurants I have visited since now.

Dec 26, 2013
Giannis in France

This might be silly but…..

Maybe they use handwriting because they change the menus every day.

Dec 26, 2013
Giannis in France

Paul Bocuse saint sylvestre menu

I have to agree on that. The only misfire I had chez Bocuse was the lobster salad. It wasnt bad by any means, but it was a bit overcooked so a bit dry.

Still it remains the best dining experience I had thus far. Not the best cooked food ( I think Le Louis XV should take that) but the best overall experience.

Dec 25, 2013
Giannis in France