If you want to find the oldest café in Paris, then look no further than Le Procope. This café/restaurant was the first to serve coffee in Paris!
Currently part of the Les Frères Blanc group, this restaurant originally opened in 1686 as a café and was a favorite of such Revolutionary luminaries as Danton, Marat and Robespierre, Age of Enlightenment writer & philosopher Voltaire (who reportedly drank 40 cups of coffee mixed with chocolate per day - café mocha, anyone?), Enlightenment philosopher, music theorist & composer Rousseau, US dignitaries Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and John Paul Jones, poets Verlaine and Rimbaud, as well as Romantic writer George Sand!
The name is gleaned from that of Sicilian Francesco Procopio dei Coltelli who may or may not have adopted the Procopio from the historian Procopius.
I popped into Le Procope this past November and was able to enter through the door on Cour du Commerce St-André. It wasn't quite opened yet so I was the only patron inside. They saw me peeking around and indicated that the place wasn't quite open for lunch and that it was indeed perfectly okay to enter via the cour. Intending to come back for lunch, I was sidetracked and never did make it back! But I intend to next trip.
Photos: February 2006 & November 2007
Favorite Dish: This restaurant specializes in foods such as seafood and oeufs durs mayonnaise as well as various salads, foie gras, terrines and so forth.
The rstaurant is very pleasant inside however this was the only highlight of our visit. We ate from the 32 euro menu. I had a of starter of sea food which was ok. For my main course I ordered duck with fresh vegetables. On arrival the duck was as tough as it could have been the vegetable were what you would expect from a school dinner. My wife ordered stake tatar which was placed in the middle of her plate with a few fries and salad dumped around the outside no presentation at all. The wine was opened at the table but not poured or offered for tasting during the meal we had to pour our own wine. The service was second class. The over riding impression I came away with was that we had ordered from the set menu and everything was to much trouble.
Many famous names ate and drank here -- as do the Parisians of today. The famous names include Voltaire, Diderot, Rousseau, Balzac and even the young Napoleon Bonaparte. It is remembered for having served the first coffee in Paris!
Established in 1686, this is the oldest restaurants in Paris and the first coffee house of the world. Many famous people were served here: Voltaire, the young Napoleon, Balzac, Rousseau ...
The restaurant has two floors with different rooms, all furnished in 18th century style, where the Bourgeois cuisine is served.
Favorite Dish: We made our reservations through the internet and received a free drink (kirr) and appetizers.
We ordered the menu of 30 EUR, which was good for its price but not really exquisite. The house wine was a good match.
The oldest cafe/restaurant in Paris, established 1686.
Patrons include Voltaire, Rousseau, Napoleon, Balzac, Hugo, Benjamin Franklin and many others.
There are 2 floors, the 1st decorated in red and gold. The 2nd floor is even more lavish.
Favorite Dish: Everything
The amience and setting are what you would expect to see in Paris.
This is a wonderful place to enjoy a cup of coffee!
Favorite Dish: Coffe and sherbet