Refined Italian near Kitsilano

We loved this busy eatery in the Marais district in the 4th arrondissement in Paris. Tragically, we ate there the day that Notre Dame cathedral to the south of it suffered a terrible fire that would have destroyed it completely if it weren’t for the bravery of the French fire fighters. Passengers on the train to the nearby Metro looked at their phones in horror, and you could see the sky tinged red-yellow with the flames as diners wept at the damage to a national treasure. 

Where?

Les Philosphes is in the heart of the Marais district, to the north of Rue de Rivoli and south of the Jardins des Archives Nationales. It’s an area buzzing with tourists and businessmen, and there was a 10-15 minute wait for a table when we sauntered up without a booking at around 7 pm.

What's it like?

Busy. Brusque. Buzzing.

 

How much?

Meal for four of us came to Euro 160 which included two 500 cl pichets of wine. Set menus in the evening range in price but Euro 35 was typical for a three course meal although more than a few of the favourite dishes were sold out by the time we ordered. 

What people say

Most of the reviews on Tripadvisor give this place four stars. Overall, I would give this restaurant poor marks for value for money, but high marks for atmosphere. 

Traditional French Cuisine

Les Philosophes is a favourite of locals and tourists, serving hearty French favourites; a typical menu might be charcuterie to start, Boeuf Bourguignon for main and Creme Brule as dessert. It’s not very original, and it’s certainly not haute cusine, but it is hearty and it’s served by old-style brusque but cheery French waiters in a way that is totally authentic.

The house wine in 500 cl carafe was excellent. We tried both the red and white, in a bid to drown our misery over Notre Dame. As always, the bill took so long to get to our table, we ordered another glass to fill the gap.