Letter from Paris

By Alexander Lobrano A L’Epi d’Or, a solid old neighbourhood bistro that opened on the edge of Les Halles in 1880, has mercifully been spared the ignominious fate of too many traditional Paris bistros in an ever gentrifying city: becoming a clothing store. Sepia-tinted by decades of Gauloises and Gitanes,

By Alexander Lobrano Le P’tit Canon is a perfect and very happy example of a good uncomplicated Parisian neighborhood bistro. It’s a lively, friendly, well-run place with a pretty Belle Epoque style dining room with a big bar up front where you can stop by on your own for a

  By Alexander Lobrano With the opening of Pavyllon, chef Yannick Alleno has created a convivial new casual restaurant that aims to make his cooking available to a broader public than the one that can afford his Michelin three-star table upstairs at the lovely Pavillon Ledoyen in the gardens of

  By Alexander Lobrano Mieux, which means ‘better’ in English, is a wonderful name for a restaurant, because it declares gastronomic ambition but with a certain appealing humility. This charmingly decorated and cleverly designed bistro just five minutes from my front door in the rue Saint Lazare delivers better than

By Alexander Lobrano The recent opening of Brasserie Bellanger is another sign of one of the best dining trends in Paris today–the renaissance of city’s affordable dining scene. This category of restaurants had long been abandoned by most Parisians to backpacking students as the food they served slouched towards mediocrity.

By Alexander Lobrano Substance is such a good restaurant that it’s well worth traveling to a quiet corner of the 16th Arrondissement to discover the sinewy talent of young chef Matthias Marc, 25, a native of the Jura in eastern France. Marc signs many of his dishes with a witty

By Alexander Lobrano Through a succession of different owners and chefs, Chardenoux, now known as Le Chardenoux, has been part of my life in Paris for thirty years. Now this storied old bistro has been rebooted as a fashion-forward restaurant redesigned and redecorated to attract a trendy crowd of younger

By Alexander Lobrano When a rooster crows, the French transcribe the sound it makes as cocorico. Even after living in France for over thirty years, I’ve never quite been able to retool my SONY Walkman ruined Connecticut-born ears to hear that. Mais peu importe, (But that’s of no importance, or, in more

  Deliciously Sincere Contemporary French Cooking By Alexander Lobrano Heading for dinner at Virtus on a rainy Saturday night, I couldn’t help but thinking about how this address in the 12th Arrondissement has always been sort of a cradle for the gastronomic ambitions of foreign chefs in Paris. The first time I

By Alexander Lobrano In the dialect of the Bearn region of southwestern France, Jòia means “joyous.” But ever since chef Hélène Darroze’s new restaurant by the same name opened in Paris, it also means great eating and good times. “I found this space when I was looking for a new address for