It is not everyday where one dines at a 3-Star Michelin restaurant for lunch in Paris.
Today I had the honor and pleasure of eating at Le Grand Vefour located in the Royal Palace of Paris’s 1st Arrondissement. I met two girlfriends for probably the most memorable “Ladies Lunch” of my entire life.
Le Grand Vefour is the oldest restaurant in Paris dating back to 1784…before the French Revolution. It started by Monsuier Aubertot, a cafe owner and used to be called Cafe de Chartres. It quickly became the place to be seen in Paris drawing in Napoleon Bonaparte in the late 1700’s and later Victor Hugo and his friends. It is a restaurant that is over two-hundred years old. I could not believe today was the day I got to experience the magic.
We arrived at 1:00 pm. We were greeted and seated by at least four people in tuxedos.
We were given glasses of Champagne and immediately this delightful plate (above) came to the table.
The lunch menu is a Pre-Fixe Menu for 115 Euros (3 courses) However, once you are into your meal, several “treats” on the house are presented…making it more of a 6 course meal.
I started with the Foie Gras… I figured when in France at a 3-Star Michelin Foie just needs to be ordered. It had a beautiful watermelon and grapefruit salad to accompany it on toasted seeded bread.
My next course was the Sea Bass with roasted fennel and Romesco.
Then…. an entire cheese cart is presented. The server slowly went through all of the cheeses, with his recommendation for goat, sheep and cow’s milk. Also where in france the cheeses were made/which regions.
I really don’t know how to put the “dessert course” into words. Basically, you have a dessert included in your pre-fixe. Plus, if you elect coffee service (which we did) you are presented with several other treats and may as well be at the Ritz having high tea. It was unbelievable. And the presentation is stunning. Pure beauty.
“Specialty Tea Cake”
Now, we also had wine with our lunch. The sommelier came to our table. And quickly within minutes of speaking to us…realized we were “wine people.” All of the sudden wine was being brought out on the house and after we were invited to tour the cellar. Incredible. We started the meal with Ruinart Champagne, then moved to a lovely Chenin Blanc that smelled of acacia honey and went well with the sea bass, then we moved to a Grand Cru Bordeaux for the cheese course, and a Gewürztraminer for the dessert selection. Divine.
The entire meal we had nothing short of two people watching our every move and making sure all of our needs were being met. The service was absolutely impeccable.
Today, Guy Martin is the Chef and Owner keeping this 200 year old restaurant thriving. If you are ever in Paris- do yourself a favor and treat yourself to this once in a lifetime meal. You will not regret it.
I am off to Corsica tomorrow…. I will post about the beauty of this french island when I am back in Paris! Au Revoir and have a fabulous weekend everyone!