Le Comptoir du Relais

This is one of my favorite restaurants in Paris!  No reservations are taken for lunch, so the trick is to get there early (right at noon) or just hope for good timing.  It is one of the few restaurants in Paris that offer continuous service.  Whenever I am in the neighborhood around lunchtime, I would swing by and check how long the queue is and hope that I get lucky.  

The menu here is extensive! And only in French, of course.  One of the reasons I started taking French lessons at Alliance Francaise was so that I can read French menus….and this is the menu that I had in mind!  

On this occasion, we started with their signature Egg Mayonnaise.  It was good, but at the end of the day, they were just hard-boiled eggs with a bit of sauce.

 egg mayonnaise

egg mayonnaise

The foie gras, on the other hand, was amazing! I loved the smooth, silky, melt-in-your-mouth texture.  The sea salt and fruit compote further enhanced the flavor of this dish.  Pleasantly surprised by the generous portion size too.

 Toast de foie gras de canard des Landes de Sandrine Paris

Toast de foie gras de canard des Landes de Sandrine Paris

The beef cheek stew with carrots was the dish I ordered the first time I dined at this restaurant years ago and it remains my favorite dish on the menu.  The beef chunks were very tender and flavorful.  The stew, which included carrots and macaroni, was hearty but not overwhelming.  

  Daube de joue de boeuf coquillettes et carottes

Daube de joue de boeuf coquillettes et carottes

The braised pork dish that my friend got was a bit dense and salty for this summer day. 

The light, albeit slightly bitter, chocolate mousse marked the end of our lovely meal. 

Verdict:  AAA. This is one of my top recommendations for Paris.  I still have my heart set on experiencing the dinner tasting menu some day.  Unfortunately for me, the tasting menu is not offered during the summer months.  When it is offered (the rest of the year), the dinner reservations often get booked 3 months out!  One of these days….. 

Le Comptoir du Relais
9 Carrefour de l'Odéon, 75006
http://www.hotel-paris-relais-saint-germain.com/flash/us/