Never have I eaten in such an awfull restaurant! The food was terrible! All the way thrugh! I have never experienced such bad food! The waiters were angry and made it a stressful and bad stay. Eventhough we had ordered a table, strangers were sat Next to us, and our table was given away before we were finished. The waiter also wanted us to pay for their mistake. I am definitely never, ever going back to this place! All I will recommed people to go anywhere else!
Chartier - a gem from a bygone age, or a relic long past its sell by date. I stand firmly on the side of the gem! The waiters wear aprons, bow ties, and are efficient to the point of being a bit brusque. The food is plain but excellent. The decor is amazing; you expect Toulouse Lautrec to sit down next to you. You are not asked where you want to sit, but are ushered to the next available table, normally sharing with others. This is an experience,not a restaurant. And it is very popular with locals, as well as tourists. When we left at about 8 pm there was a queue of over 100 people.
There are a lot of reviews on travel forum websites, and they vary from one extreme to the other. We love it. It is an inexpensive restaurant, full of character and characters, serving delicious food. It is worth at least one visit for the atmosphere and to discover which side of the fence you are on. I think you will like it.
The decor of this restaurant was lovely and I was told it was a Paris institution, we were told to get there early as possible as they don't do bookings and people line up on the street to wait for a table.
I was bitterly dissapointed, we had to sit next to strangers, that wasn't ideal, but the food was terrible, I've cooked better at home in a rush, the meat could not be chewed, so I was looking forward to desert as the meal was so bad, it was a piece of chocolate cake, nothing fancy. I would not recommend this place to anyone.
Favorite Dish: Nothing
The staff were unhelpful and our steaks were rare (meant to be well done - and this was after we sent them back!). More fast food than french food. On the plus side the wine was cheap and drinkable and the setting was interesting. Would definately not recommend this restauant to a friend. Far better choices available in the area.
As Chartier was just around the corner from my hotel and because it is a favorite of Michael’s & Scott’s, the couple from NYC (D&L) and I had dinner there. D&L, New Yorkers that they are, are foodies. D had recently won a trip report competition at SlowTrav, which was well-noted for his fine descriptions of French food so I worried they would be underwhelmed by the humble bouillon offerings of Chartier. However, there was no need as they loved it as much as I did.
The décor is classic while the food is classic French home food. While I thought my côte d'agneau grillées frites was okay (a little tough for lamb chops, I thought - 10.20€), I fell for the oeufs dur (like deviled eggs - 2.20€). From the photo, you can see that the presentation of the latter dish was rather phallic in nature, which I thought ironic considering the feminine nature of eggs.
Also ironic was the fact that I found the service to be excellent as well, something I wasn’t expecting as I’d been told the waiters could be brusque and that theirs is one of the few restaurants in Paris that will rush you out the door! D&L are excellent conversationalists and can touch upon any topic with ease. And, of course, Michael & Scott are wonderful people - so funny & erudite. Great dinner companions all!
This place is so inexpensive, in such a beautiful historic setting that there is one gentleman who's been eating there every single day for at least 20 years!
Favorite Dish: OMG, I would return just for the oeufs dur!
Photos: February 2006
I've got to agree with the reviewer who said to avoid this restaurant. The atmosphere is great and the environment eclectic and fun, but not sufficiently different to very many other Parisienne brasseries where the food is considerably better. We had some fun watching the waiters feed some of the other guests (glad it wasn't us) but the food was very pedestrian and the main course (rump steak with pepper sauce for my partner, entrecote for me) was awful. Very poor quality meat - would have got better in any cheap cafe in the UK. We went somewhere else for pudding. Would firmly say this is one to avoid.
Chartier is a part of history. The food is ordinary. The service is brisk and not always friendly -- and you will be asked to leave when you are through.
Yet people [locals as well as tourists] pile in every day for the basic French cuisine that is priced right and the whole experience. Part of the reason is the classic decor with globe lights, mirrors and brass coat stands.
You don't go for the food -- you go for the experience -- which, from the decals on the door, is advertised far and wide as such! The entrance to the restaurant is set back from the street in a little courtyard.
In amazing surroundings, there's a balcony circling the whole interior of the restaurant, we were sat up there so you get good views of everyone eating.
In my opinion it has a real 'French' feel about it, all mix-matched chairs and tables, candles, and very cheap wine.
Though remember we didn't get any vegetables with our fish or meat so order seperatley.
The main meals were about FF50.00 about £5 each, side orders were FF12.00 so about £1.20, very good value for money.
And when you come out of the restaurant there was a crepe stand opposite, we even managed to get a free one as there was so many buying them!
Favorite Dish: I had salmon with legumes, simple.
Chartier is one of the most famous restaurant in Paris, well it's more what we call a "cantine" than a restaurant... But the place is great, and if you are walking in the area at lunch time, you should go there...
Here you will meet the history, place from the 19th century typically parisian style, but you will also meet parisian workers, coming here to eat for a good price.
The menu is simple, and is printed on a single sheet in two colors on the table, here you won't find extraordinary french dishes, but normal food like parisians eat in their appartment, food is without surprise but the good news is that the price also!
Service is efficient by those man in black & white, professionnal but sometimes friendly, a very good adress to taste Parisian atmosphere!
Favorite Dish: Eggs and Chicken
According to my "Time Out" this budget bistro offers "incredibly good value" and "hearty meals." That view seems to be supported by previous posts on this site. The best advice I can offer is AVOID, AVOID, AVOID. The place is a disaster, very bad food, (why would you come to Paris to have hamburger and fries?) equally poor service and very, very poor value. It would seem that it is happy to trade on its past reputation (certainly 10-15 years ago it did provide good value.) There are hundreds of better places to eat in Paris, including Orestias 4 rue Grégoire-de-Tours, 6e, Metro: Odéon. .
A mixture of Greek and French cuisine it is by the junction of rue Gregoire de tours & rue de Buci in the 6th (at the bottom of rue Gregorie, on the left hand side just before rue de Buci, it has large wooden tables which means having to share.
Favorite Dish: At Orestias always stick with the set menu - for a first course I recommend the pate - for the second the chicken or kebab is reliable. The house wine is rough but drinkable, try the Rose.
A must for any visitor to Paris. This atmospheric restaurant is tucked behind a rather unassuming gateway - who would suspect such a lovely, bright dining experience lay beyond?
You will be seated wherever there is a suitable space and can end up eating with locals or tourists. Don't worry, you will get into conversation with your table companions - whatever language you speak!
The waiters will tally up your bill on the paper place settings so you can even take it with you as a souvenir if you want to.
Favorite Dish: Every meal I have had has been top notch. The steaks are particulary good and the table wine isn't at all bad.
Any visitor to Paris who wants to experience a wonderful traditional Parisien brasserie should visit Chartier. A vast restaurant on two floors with an electric atmosphere and good no fuss cuisine. If travelling alone - at this restaurant it's no problem you will soon be conversing with the diners whom you share your table as well as your bread basket with. I returned 3 nights in a row and each time enjoyed myself...Try it.
Favorite Dish: All dishes are good here but I really enjoyed the steak au poivre.
A friend of mine actually reccommended this restaurant to me and i love it. It was very inexpensive and had really great typical french food. For about $15 we had an entire meal and a demi bottle of wine.
Favorite Dish: I had prawns, salmon and rasberry tart. all of it was really great, but it was my first time peeling my own shrimp. (french cuisine)
Traditional French food at an affordable price. Be warned though evening meals are generally accompanied by queues to get in, so get there early as they don't take bookings. Even better make it for lunch. Chartier seems to be set in an old Post Office, with very fast service (sometimes rude/arrogant waiters) as it is a little like a dining hall, so a ship'em in, ship'em out attitude has developed. Still the food is great, and the service is fine. Would recommend this restaurant to anyone
Favorite Dish: Escargot - garlic snails - you have to be brave and try them
This big old place has been here since 1896 and appears to be popular with locals as well as tourists. It is a large room with lots of wood, mirrors and brass. I don't think they take reservations, so you could have a wait to get in. It is a lively and usually packed place and I saw one waiter's patience wear thin, but most were quite professional and cordial.
Favorite Dish: I had a set menu meal which was very good - steak with veggies (this was my first European trip and I was not very adventurous) with raspberries and cream for dessert. It was all very good.