3. The Louvre and Palais-Royal
Essential restaurants: yam’Tcha, Verjus, HIGUMA, Kunitoraya
The area around the Louvre and the Palais-Royal is great for diners of two particular stripes: moneyed gastro types, and aficionados of all things Japanese. The former will no doubt feel at home at Michelin darling yam’Tcha, which pairs elegant Chinese-French fusion plates with rare teas and is featured as one of the four French restaurants profiled on the latest Chef’s Table Netflix series. They’re also likely to go for hotel-to-the-stars Le Meurice, whose glitzy two-star restaurant has been run by Alain Ducasse and team since 2013. Slightly less expensive options are Verjus, Laura Adrian and Braden Perkins’ hit French-tinged wine bar/restaurant, and its nearby spin-off Ellsworth, which both offer reasonable tasting menus and charm expats with gourmet takes on Kentucky fried chicken and doughnuts (among other, perhaps more refined, options).
The nearby Rue Saint-Anne, meanwhile, is without a doubt the place to head for udon and gyoza in Paris: the road became a real magnet for entrepreneurial Japanese chefs back in the 1990s and 2000s, and has since been nicknamed Little Tokyo by some. Many of the restaurants are excellent, but it’s HIGUMA and Kunitoraya that really stand out.