Dining for One in Paris
August 30, 2011 9:52 AM   Subscribe

I want an awesome dinner in Paris. Alone. Where do I go?

I'm going to Paris for business and taking a couple days for myself. I would like to have an amazing dining experience over the weekend of 16-18 September, and I require recommendations. I love just about anything (sweetbreads less so unless they're dressed up nicely), and I would really love to have some high quality, local meats and cheeses especially. Dress code and cost not a problem, I just need to be able to get a table.

The two complications I would like to work around - I don't speak French and I'll be dining alone. It would be best if I could go somewhere that I won't be judged for either of these things. Other than that, go nuts!
posted by backseatpilot to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Try Rick Steves ideas over at his site
posted by Freedomboy at 10:33 AM on August 30, 2011

I can echo the experience of the World Famous. I've been to Paris 5 times alone and never got treated strangely for dining by myself. My first trip to Paris I hadn't spoken in French in 12 years. I was amazed how willing people were to cope with my combination french-english-hand puppets to try and converse.

If you're really concerned about not speaking French, stick to the restos at the heart of Paris (ie near the Louvre). A lot of them have menus in French and English.
posted by miss-lapin at 11:21 AM on August 30, 2011

Check out the Michelin-starred Le Bristol. Being a restaurant based in a large hotel in paris, they're fairly international. The restaurant terrace should be open this time of year and may be a nice place to sit while enjoying your meal. See if you can get your hotel to do the booking for you. I'm sure they'd be more than happy to help.

Bon appetit!
posted by lemuring at 11:21 AM on August 30, 2011

As long as you make a minimum effort (say "bonjour", etc...)you won't have a language problem, and "bonjour" pretty much is the limit of my French. Even when I was in a massive, crowded place where no one spoke english I've always gotten by and had fun.
posted by jeporter99 at 11:42 AM on August 30, 2011

Based on your post, I think you really can't go wrong with Michelin-starred restaurants based in large hotels. Two more to add: Le Cinq at the Four Seasons and L'Espadon at the Ritz Paris
posted by lemuring at 11:42 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

David Lebovitz is a chef & food writer living in Paris. His site is full of great recommendations.
posted by judith at 12:57 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

I would totally post to CL and find someone that wants to dine with you - you don't come off as a creep and you can find expats in Paris via CL (or, whatever) that aren't creeps either:

You gotta understand, Paris is flooded with people who have a passion for food and want to share that passion. Being able to sample a new restaurant that they've been pining for + meeting someone interesting (that's you!) PLUS potentially getting their share paid for would be a dream come true.

Dining is also the #1 social activity in France (lunch, esp.) and you're missing a big part of it, if you do it alone. Take 3hrs, find a new friend and get some lunch at 3:00pm. It's wonderful.
posted by alex_skazat at 1:54 PM on August 30, 2011

Terres de truffes if you like mushrooms.
posted by cynicalidealist at 2:51 PM on August 30, 2011


posted by finding.perdita at 6:18 PM on August 30, 2011

Best answer: Write and ask if Hidden Kitchen is serving on any of the days you'll be in Paris.
posted by Joleta at 6:37 PM on August 30, 2011

Response by poster: Just got back from dinner. Hidden Kitchen is the best thing I have ever experienced. I got incredibly lucky and someone cancelled at the last minute - worth every penny and more. The food was absolutely delicious and the hospitality was simply fantastic.
posted by backseatpilot at 4:09 PM on September 16, 2011

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