Best places to eat in Paris
Paris is known for its fine dining, but the city isn't just about formal restaurants, classic dishes and crisp white tablecloths. It also boasts an innovative and diverse culinary scene, with plenty of imaginative new flavours and inspired chefs. Here's our pick of the places making waves in the Paris food scene.
Surrounded by Moorish mosaic tiles, it's easy to feel like you've been transported to the Middle East when you're at Ima Cantine. The veggie food follows the same regional inspiration as the interior design – order fluffy sweet potato falafel and cashew kofta, followed by a couple of tahini cookies, from this relaxed spot on the banks of the canal.
For an inventive meal, take a seat at Le Dauphin, an elegant wine bar decked out in gleaming marble. Here, you can sample European-inspired small plates with extraordinary twists, like jet black squid-ink risotto, Iberian pork cheek and buttermilk-olive oil ice cream.
Grab a table outside old-school Chez Prune in the warmer months and enjoy fresh fish, crispy salads and creamy desserts next to the glimmering canal. Inside, the décor's eclectic – some of the light fixtures and wall hangings are even made from repurposed rubbish.
The Eighth Arrondissement
Le Grand Café Capucines
For an authentically French dining experience, settle in at one of the sleek velvet booths at Le Grand Café Capucines for mouth-wateringly moist oysters in a rich broth. This eatery was founded as far back as 1875, so it’s as classically Parisian as it gets.
Get your daily baguette from Julambre, a few minutes' walk from the Arc de Triomphe. The savoury goods and pastries served in this hot-pink shop are designed and crafted in-house by artisan bakers and patissiers.
Ravioli Chinois Nord-Est
Dine on dumplings under neon lights in this no-frills space – it has some of the juiciest jiaozi (Chinese dumplings) in the city. The budget-friendly menu typically lists around ten different types, with options like pork and celery and shrimp and chive. You can also order a crunchy peanut salad as a satisfying side.
Tiny pistachio-coloured Mijo T brings the distinctive regional cuisine of eastern France to Paris. Dig into a succulent duo of salmon with braised fennel for your main course, then finish off the meal with organic rosemary and honey ice cream.
Les Canailles Menilmontant
This restaurant is the little brother of the original – and immensely popular – Les Canailles in Pigalle. Wood detailing and a bright-blue-tiled floor give the place a home-from-home feel. While you're there, try the melt-in-the-mouth carpaccio of beef tongue appetiser that's a favourite among regular diners.
Pain Vin Fromages
Feast on gooey raclette, a melted cheese dish popular in France's Savoie department, at Pain Vin Fromages. Set inside a rustic stone cellar, this restaurant will transport you to the French Alps – all without leaving Le Marais.
For a contemporary take on French fare – in a restaurant resembling a sophisticated apartment – seek out Derrière. Pick a spot next to the stairs, by the living room's ping-pong table or even under the mirrored ceiling in the bedroom, before digging into flaky sea bass cooked in coconut milk for main and a custard 'floating island' for dessert.
Brunch place Gramme caters to the Instagram crowd with its mismatched wooden furniture and stripped-back walls. Meals are served with bread from the on-trend bakery Le Petit Grain. Wash down your brioche-based bánh mì sandwich with their delectable Café Lomi coffee.
Take an evening stroll just beyond the borders of the Marais area to reach Le Dix at the Crowne Plaza Paris hotel. People-watch as you indulge in fine-dining options like crusted cod fillet and tender veal rump at this smart restaurant. It's framed by big bay windows facing the bustling Place de la République, one of Paris' biggest squares.
A couple of minutes' walk from the Sacré-Cœur, this international restaurant has iconic views similar to those you'll see from the basilica itself. Tear your gaze away and check out LouLou's menu, where you'll find organic coconut mussels and homemade carrot cake.
Le Cabanon de la Butte
Take a seat by the window, order some classic French dishes and gaze out over Montmartre's rooftops at upscale Le Cabanon de la Butte. You can look forward to choices like burgundy-cooked snails and rich beef tartare with fresh salad.
Set off on your foodie foray around Paris with an empty stomach and an adventurous appetite – both are sure to be satisfied.