Paris has an unfathomable amount of restaurants. They all smell fantastic, look charming as ever, have beautiful people to wait on you, and, so it seems, a croque monsieur on the menu. As you know, my love for this city knows no bounds and the essence, the beginnings of Paris are captured in each historic restaurant. Some of these may be a bit more on the touristy side, but what people don’t often think about is that they are touristy for a reason!
If the charm of old Paris is what you are looking for, look no further than Buillon Chartier. This restaurant was founded in 1896 is one of the most well preserved of art deco styles. They do not take reservations but don’t be scared by the long line – it moves quickly! Once inside, don’t forget to look up while enjoying your modestly priced meal and take in the gorgeous glass ceiling.
If scenery is the name of your game, it doesn’t get much better than Café de la Paix. This 1862 restaurant is located directly across the street from the Paris Opera. Grab a table outside and prepare to witness all walks of Paris life and if you’re lucky, possibly even catching live tango dancers on the Opera steps.
Lastly, if real French history is what you’re after, there’s no better place that Le Procope. Its doors have been open on & off since 1686 (no, that’s not a typo!), and boasts former regulars such as Voltaire, Rousseau, Benjamin Franklin and Napoleon Bonaparte. Napoleon’s hat is even on display in the restaurant! Make a reservation. You won’t regret eating at this lively place.