23 Rue de Dunkerque, Paris, France
01 42 85 05 15
NileGuide Expert tip:
A good choice for that last taste and sight of belle epoque Paris before you depart for less elegant places
An historic Parisian brasserie in the grand style, perfectly placed, as its name suggests, for travellers departing from the Gare du Nord opposite. Now owned by a chain that has snapped up other such "typically French" eating establishments, it nevertheless retains many excellent qualities. The impeccable maitre d'hotel welcomes travel-worn customers as if they were dripping in diamonds and whisks away their bulging bags to park them safely. If you tell the waiter what time you need to check in for your Eurostar, he will recommend the dishes that he can guarantee to deliver at top speed to make sure you do not have to hurry for your train. All this, and the Art Nouveau décor dating back to 1925, means your reviewer can forgive the less than stellar food. Choucroute is a speciality but this reviewer found it rather insipid and tepid here compared to the steaming cabbage-y bowls of Alsace. Coming from Picardie, chef Pascal Boulogne is perhaps keener on his fish. But you will find all the traditional French favourites - bouillabaisse and escalope de foie gras chaud are other specialities - on the menu. Arriving travellers not pushed for time and wanting to go Gallic right away can linger over a silver tower of the fruits de mer.