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Thursday, January 5, 2012

RESTAURANT CAFE DE LA PAIX - PARIS, LONDON

CAFE DE LA PAIX
PARIS, FRANCE

After walking the streets of Paris for hours we began to look for an interesting cafe where we could grab a nice lunch.  Directly across from the beautiful National Music Building was Cafe de la Paix.  We did not know it at the time, but this place is very famous.  We were seated in the main dining room and waited over 20 minutes before anyone came to the table.  In fact, I had to go to the hostess and tell her that we had not even been served water.  She apologized and took our drink order herself.  A waiter came by a few minutes later.  He was straight forward and did not speak english.  Seemed like it was a chore to do his job.  We requested water first.  The water did not arrive until after our entrees arrived some 45 minutes later.  The service was really bad.  We ordered the Starter, Main Course and Dessert Menu for $46 Euro each.  Quite expensive for lunch.  We ordered a Foie Gras appetizer just to try it in Paris.  The Foie Gras was served cold.  Very hard to each this much Foie Gras when it is not seared.  It was good for about two bites and then very heavy on the pallet.  I started with Pan Seared Snails with Old Fashioned Mustard.  The Snails were tiny and pretty tasteless.  My entree was Black Codfish, Swish Chards with Piquillo Peppers.  Again very tasteless dish.  My wife ordered the Piping Hot Creme of Parmenter with Mussels, Cockles and Crayfish.  This soup was very good.  For her entree she tried the Veal Confit with Blanquette Gravy.  Good tasting veal but more than half was thick pieces of fat.  She could not stomach the dish because of the huge pieces of fat.  For dessert she had the Pear, Creamy Chocolate Cardamon Ganache, Pearl Balls in Honey Glaze with a glass of wine.  Good but not great.  I ordered the Best of Five Dessert by designer Manish Arora.  I have no idea what this thing was or what flavor it was supposed to be.  To me it was tasteless cake that I did not eat.  It was however quite beautiful.  We did not enjoy the service or food here and would not return.

The Café de la Paix opened June 30, 1862, to serve the Grand-Hôtel de la Paix (named after the nearby rue de la Paix), whose name was later shortened to Grand-Hôtel.[1] It serviced visitors of Expo exhibition in 1867. Its proximity to the Palais Garnier attracted many famous clients, including Jules MassenetÉmile Zola, and Guy de Maupassant. The Café is also the setting for the poem "The Absinthe Drinker" by the Canadian poet, Robert Service [2]
During the Belle Époque, visitors to the Café included Sergei Diaghilev, and the Prince of Wales and future King of the United KingdomEdward VII.
A radio studio was later installed in the Café, which broadcast the program "This is Paris" to the United States.
On August 22, 1975, the Café was declared a historic site by the French government.

RESTAURANT CAFE de la PAIX
MENU (CLICK TO ENLARGE)
MENU (CLICK TO ENLARGE)
DESSERT MENU (CLICK TO ENLARGE)
FRESH BREAD AND BUTTER WITH ANCHOVIES
LE FOIE GRAS SEL POLVRE, POIRE CONFITE ET ROTIE
FOIE GRAS WITH CONDIMENTS, CONFIT AND PEAR
VELOUTE D'UN PARMENTIER SERVI CHAUD, MOULES, COQUES, ECREVISSES
PIPING HOT CREAM OF PARMENTIER, MUSSELS, COCKLES, CRAYFISH
ESCARGOTS JUSTE POELES, MOUTARDE A L ANCIENNE
PAN SEARED SNAILS, OLD FASHIONED MUSTARD
LE VEAU CUIT CONFIT, JUS D' UNE BLANQUETTE
VEAL CONFIT, BLANQUETTE GRAVY
LA MORUE CHARBONNIERE, CARDONS, JUS DE PIQUILLOS
BLACK CODFISH, SWISS CHARDS, PIQUILLO PEPPERS
LA POIRE, GANACHE TENDRE AU CHOCOLAT CARDAMOME
BILLES DE POIRES AU MIEL, VERRE DE BANYULS
PEAR, CREAMY CHOCOLATE CARDOMON GANACHE, PEAR BALLS
IN HONEY WITH GLASS OF BANYULS WINE
BEST OF FIVE PAR LE CREATEUR MANISH ARORA
BEST OF FIVE BY THE DESIGNER MANISH ARORA
MAIN DINING ROOM AT CAFE DE LA PAIX

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