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16 Hot and Essential Restaurants in Paris

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New, exciting businesses appear in Paris at a relentless pace, and it can be a daunting task to visit and figure out which of them to visit. So today food writer and Mandarin Oriental concierge Adrian Moore has taken on the task of sifting through the most vital openings of the past couple of years, including 2012's fruitful rentrée, and selecting sixteen that won't fail you.

Among the selections are the bistronomic players (Bertrand Grebaut's Septime), champions of small plates and natural wines (Pierre Jancou's Vivant Table, Iñaki Aizpitarte's Le Dauphin), and chefs counters for authorial cooking (David Toutain's Agapé Substance). There, too, are even funkier options, ranging from a bar with great hot dogs (Glass), a 250-seat loft designed by Philippe Starck that does homey French meals (Ma Cocotte), and a contemporary butcher and specialty products shop (cheZ Aline). Here now, sixteen hot and essential restaurants in Paris:

Any glaring omissions? Make your nominations in the comments.

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Ma Cocotte

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Located in the Paris Flea Market’s Marché Paul Bert, this 250 seat, 1000 square meter industrial loft is open daily and serves up homey French fare in a fabulous Philippe Starck-designed space.

Located in a former Pigalle bar, the coolest new bar in Paris has Brooklyn beer on tap, great cocktails from the Candelaria team, and the best artisinal hot dogs in town.

Neva Cuisine

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Located in the gastronomic wasteland at the edge of the 8th arondissement, Neva counts the former second in command at the Michelin-starred Grand Cascade (Mexican Beatriz Gonzalez), as well as its former pastry chef. The superb cooking is classic, inventive, and one of the best values in town. So get there before they get their Michelin star and that changes.

Atelier Vivanda

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Akrame Benallal, the Michelin-starred chef whose restaurant's just across the road, opened this meat and potatoes concept only a few weeks back to the delight of Gallic carnivores. The Black Angus is free-range and (gasp) American.

Paris’ new budget gourmet heartthrob, this shoebox-sized 20-seater near the Gare du Nord has well-sourced products and precise cooking from an all-Japanese team trained at Robuchon and Taillevent.

L'Office

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In the slowly gentrifying 9th, this arty little eatery recently revved up its kitchen with the addition of Japanese chef Yosuke Yamaji, who cut his teeth in the kitchens of Ducasse and Robuchon. Think: market-inspired menus and small production natural wines.

Vivant Table

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Located in a period bird shop complete with garish colored tiles, the high priest of natural wine, Pierre Jancou, recruited chef Sota (Robuchon, Stella Maris) who producesupdated bistro cooking.

Le Dauphin

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Wonderboy chef Iñaki Aizpitarte’s annex to the famously impossible to book Chateaubriand next door has a Rem Koolhaas all-Italian marble decor, worldly tapas menu, natural wines galore, and one of the coolest crowds in town.

Restaurant Pierre-Sang Boyer

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This countertop-only spot located in boisterous Oberkampf is one of the more interesting tables in town, with a former French Top Chef winner doing a blind tasting menu, mixing East and West, and an annoying no reservations policy.

Roseval

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This is one of year’s hottest tables, a literal hole-in-the-wall in the charming, forlorn hood of Menilmontant. The chef duo that runs it has Chateaubriand and Rino in their pedigree, and the wines are, of course, natural and biodynamic.

cheZ aline

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In the rough and ready 11th, former Verre Volé and 104 chef Delphine Zampetti has turned a kitschy horsemeat butcher into the premiere salad and sandwich shop in town. Get there early to snag one of the four seats, or just do takeout.

Septime

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In the up and coming onzieme, this industrial chic little bistro, helmed by former Michelin-starred chef Bertrand Grébaut serves up a superb and ever-changing market menu to clued up Parisians and jettsetting gourmands.

Le Sot l'y Laisse

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In the 11th, Japanese chef Eiji Doihara, who cheffed at Paul Bocuse’s brasserie in Tokyo has revamped this local neighborhood bistro with exceptional French produce and precise cooking.

Le Sergent Recruteur

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Antonin Bonnet recently crossed the pond, quitting his one star Michelin Greenhouse for Le Sergent Recruteur, once the most touristy table in town. Now, it's been completely gutted and redone by designer Jaime Hayon, with a tasting-menu-only philosophy that has drawn food freaks from across town (although only time will tell if the high prices will disuade diners).

Agapé Substance

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David Toutain, who has worked at Arpège and Mugaritz, rocked the Parisian gastronomic landscape with this 18-seat gourmet counter last year. This Left Bank table is packed for lunch and dinner for the no-choice tasting menu and ecelectic natural wine selection.

Chez l'Ami Jean

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Chez L’Ami Jean, located in a tiny side street in the bourgeois 7th is the quintessential chef’s bistro: cramped, noisy, and impossible to book at the last minute. Stéphane Jego, one of the best and most generous chefs in the city, gives his all at one of the most personal and iconoclastic places to eat in town.

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Ma Cocotte

Located in the Paris Flea Market’s Marché Paul Bert, this 250 seat, 1000 square meter industrial loft is open daily and serves up homey French fare in a fabulous Philippe Starck-designed space.

Glass

Located in a former Pigalle bar, the coolest new bar in Paris has Brooklyn beer on tap, great cocktails from the Candelaria team, and the best artisinal hot dogs in town.

Neva Cuisine

Located in the gastronomic wasteland at the edge of the 8th arondissement, Neva counts the former second in command at the Michelin-starred Grand Cascade (Mexican Beatriz Gonzalez), as well as its former pastry chef. The superb cooking is classic, inventive, and one of the best values in town. So get there before they get their Michelin star and that changes.

Atelier Vivanda

Akrame Benallal, the Michelin-starred chef whose restaurant's just across the road, opened this meat and potatoes concept only a few weeks back to the delight of Gallic carnivores. The Black Angus is free-range and (gasp) American.

Abri

Paris’ new budget gourmet heartthrob, this shoebox-sized 20-seater near the Gare du Nord has well-sourced products and precise cooking from an all-Japanese team trained at Robuchon and Taillevent.

L'Office

In the slowly gentrifying 9th, this arty little eatery recently revved up its kitchen with the addition of Japanese chef Yosuke Yamaji, who cut his teeth in the kitchens of Ducasse and Robuchon. Think: market-inspired menus and small production natural wines.

Vivant Table

Located in a period bird shop complete with garish colored tiles, the high priest of natural wine, Pierre Jancou, recruited chef Sota (Robuchon, Stella Maris) who producesupdated bistro cooking.

Le Dauphin

Wonderboy chef Iñaki Aizpitarte’s annex to the famously impossible to book Chateaubriand next door has a Rem Koolhaas all-Italian marble decor, worldly tapas menu, natural wines galore, and one of the coolest crowds in town.

Restaurant Pierre-Sang Boyer

This countertop-only spot located in boisterous Oberkampf is one of the more interesting tables in town, with a former French Top Chef winner doing a blind tasting menu, mixing East and West, and an annoying no reservations policy.

Roseval

This is one of year’s hottest tables, a literal hole-in-the-wall in the charming, forlorn hood of Menilmontant. The chef duo that runs it has Chateaubriand and Rino in their pedigree, and the wines are, of course, natural and biodynamic.

cheZ aline

In the rough and ready 11th, former Verre Volé and 104 chef Delphine Zampetti has turned a kitschy horsemeat butcher into the premiere salad and sandwich shop in town. Get there early to snag one of the four seats, or just do takeout.

Septime

In the up and coming onzieme, this industrial chic little bistro, helmed by former Michelin-starred chef Bertrand Grébaut serves up a superb and ever-changing market menu to clued up Parisians and jettsetting gourmands.

Le Sot l'y Laisse

In the 11th, Japanese chef Eiji Doihara, who cheffed at Paul Bocuse’s brasserie in Tokyo has revamped this local neighborhood bistro with exceptional French produce and precise cooking.

Le Sergent Recruteur

Antonin Bonnet recently crossed the pond, quitting his one star Michelin Greenhouse for Le Sergent Recruteur, once the most touristy table in town. Now, it's been completely gutted and redone by designer Jaime Hayon, with a tasting-menu-only philosophy that has drawn food freaks from across town (although only time will tell if the high prices will disuade diners).

Agapé Substance

David Toutain, who has worked at Arpège and Mugaritz, rocked the Parisian gastronomic landscape with this 18-seat gourmet counter last year. This Left Bank table is packed for lunch and dinner for the no-choice tasting menu and ecelectic natural wine selection.

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Chez l'Ami Jean

Chez L’Ami Jean, located in a tiny side street in the bourgeois 7th is the quintessential chef’s bistro: cramped, noisy, and impossible to book at the last minute. Stéphane Jego, one of the best and most generous chefs in the city, gives his all at one of the most personal and iconoclastic places to eat in town.

Related Maps