Bistros & Restos 1st to 5th Arr.

Bistro Valois-1st Arrondissement

Set on the site of the stables of Louis-Philippe and the Orleans family the Bistrot Valois has quickly become a cantine for government workers at the nearby Palais Royal since its opening in late 2013.

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At the moment (2013) Mexican food is once again hot in Paris and you can pay a lot of money for acceptable “Mexican” dishes but when I want a real taste of Mexico I head for Iticate.

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La Petite Périgourdine

I had frequently stopped here for a pre or post cinema (Grand Action) nibble of a fabulously moist paté de campagne with a glass of Chinon so when my pal John Baxter, who poked fun at me in THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WALK IN THE WORLD and promises to do so again in his next book, suggested lunch, it was time.

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Le Céladon at the Hotel Westminster

It was M’s birthday and although we’d eaten many times at the Duke’s Bar at the Hotel Westminster overseen by Chef Christophe Moisand we’d never tried his 1-star Le Céladon. We were warmly welcomed by Alain, the maitre d’ and ushered to our table where moments later Emanuel Traore, the charming General Manager, joined us accompanied by 3 flutes of an excellent champagne rosé.

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Mori Venice Bar

Elegance is in the details and at Mori Venice Bar it’s in the decor and the cuisine. Remodeled in 2010 in a blend of the crisp modern style of Philippe Starck and the refinement of Italy, you know that you are in for a rich experience from the moment you walk in. Murano glassware, Venetian mirrors, chandeliers made by a client–a veritable museum.

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La Cloche Des Halles-1st arrondissement

Franck Lesage tarted up the place when he took over the reins from his father, Serge, but didn’t disturb the formula that has made it an institution since its inception in 1974-hand cut charcuterie, ripe, runny cheeses and good, inexpensive wines (8cl glasses at the bar for 2 euros) drawn from the barrels that they personally select. As befits a wine bar a wide selection from Beaujolais.

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The Duke’s Bar at the Westminster Hotel

The Union Jack proudly flies above the entrance to the Hôtel Westminster signaling an oasis of British tradition planted between the Place Vendome and Garnier’s Opéra.

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This was my first visit to the Hotel Castille and Assaggio since Chef Giulio Freschi arrived and I was super impressed. For starters the room has been beautifully redecorated for greater intimacy and weather permitting, a lovely, open courtyard awaits diners for an evening under the stars.

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No one should have a bad meal in Paris! Whether a 2-star restaurant or a local bistro there should always be an excellent rapport qualité prix– relationship between price and quality. At my favorites you will be treated as a regular and have a satisfying experience. Just tell them  “Terrance sent you.”


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Regularly scheduled literary salons with guest writers, private dinners, restaurant openings, wine tastings,market visits and cooking classes attract a discerning, sophisticated crowd who love to have a good time while they learn. Our cadre of Paris–based colleagues happily share their passion for this magical city.