On the spur of the moment last Wednesday, I treated myself to lunch at Le Grand Colbert. I read they had a 19€ formule and decided while I was at the Palais Royal to go check it out.
Le Grand Colbert gained notoriety in 2003 when a key scene in the film Something’s Gotta Give with Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson and Keanu Reeves was shot there. Ever since then the restaurant has been a hotspot for its romantic atmosphere. The dressed up brasserie is the typical sort in Paris with high ceilings, mosaic tiled floors, a long bar and bentwood chairs, but what makes it softer and more romantic I believe is the soothing pink lighting, making everyone look more appealing.
I arrived about 12:45 and it was fairly crowded. I was seated on a banquette by the window, an ideal spot to people watch as the customers entered. Surprisingly, most of the diners were French, since I expected more tourists due to the film.
The formule is straightforward: le plat and dessert du jour plus a cup of coffee for 19€. Le plat de jour was sliced duck breast with a hearty serving of roasted potatoes and onion. The duck was rare and chewy with a flavorful sauce, and the potatoes were mostly crispy but some were soggy in a good way, as they had soaked up the juice of the caramelized onions. A rich but not heavy chocolate mousse tart with caramelized hazelnuts for dessert was velvety and smooth on the palate and I wish I would have ordered a glass of red to compliment it. A well prepared French meal, just plain and simple.
In between courses I perused the menu with its typical brasserie offerings: oysters, onion soup, foie gras, blanquette de veau, raw seafood platters on ice with lobster, shrimp, crab and oysters, onion soup and frogs legs, but there was also a vegan menu.
The service was from yesteryear, stiff and no-nonsense, with the wait staff in all black.
What I liked best about Le Grand Colbert was an authentic Paris experience in a time-honored brasserie, with good, honest food and atmosphere unequaled anywhere else.
Le Grand Colbert
2 rue Vivienne, 75002
Metro: Palais Royal/Musee du Louvre
Open seven days for lunch and dinner
My Apartment for Rent March 24 to April 2
I am renting my apartment out from March 24 to April 2, with a minimum of 7 nights. Price $190 per night,10% if you rent it more than 7 nights.
Centrally located in the heart of the Marais near the St. Paul metro station, it's a spacious one-bedroom 750 sq. ft. loft style apartment with 12 ft. ceilings, decorated in chic Mid-Century Modern furniture and sleeps one or two people in a Queen size bed. Amenities include A/C, washer/dryer, 16" flat screen TV, dishwasher, internet connection/Wifi and free long distance calls to the U.S. The apartment is located on the second floor with an elevator.
Photos upon request. Please email me at [email protected] if you are interested.
Come experience Eye Prefer Paris live with Eye Prefer Paris Tours, which are 3-hour walking tours I personally lead. Eye Prefer Paris Tours include many of the places I have written about such as small museums & galleries, restaurants, cafes, food markets, secret addresses, fashion & home boutiques, parks and gardens and much more. In addition to my specialty Marais Tour, I also lead tours of Montmartre, St. Germain, Latin Quarter, in addition to Shopping Tours, Gay Tours, Girlfriend Tours, Food Tours, Flea Market Tours, Paris Highlights Tours, and Chocolate & Pastry tours.
Tours start at 225 euros for up to 3 people, and 75 euros for each additional person. I look forward to meeting you on my tours and it will be my pleasure and delight to show you my insiders Paris.
Check it out at www.eyepreferparistours.com
Click here to watch a video of our famous Marais tour
New! Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes
I am happy to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes. Come take an ethnic culinary journey with me and chef and caterer Charlotte Puckette, co-author of the bestseller The Ethnic Paris Cookbook (with Olivia Kiang-Snaije). First we will shop at a Paris green-market for the freshest ingredients and then return to Charlotte's professional kitchen near the Eiffel Tower to cook a three-course lunch. After, we will indulge in the delicious feast we prepared along with hand-selected wines.
Cost: 195 euros per person (about $210)