Café de la Paix is extremely popular. The famous large bustling café sits on a busy Paris intersection, across from the Opera — it's one of the best places in Paris for people-watching( Best spot in Paris for Kuwaiti and Gulf states tourists) During one visit — following shopping excursion to nearby Galleries Lafayette — I had fine late lunch there with a friend and hanged there for 4 hours without noticing the time!!!
Went for few indoors dinners there as well.
Favorite Dish The seafood is very fresh and well prepaired, and a good wine is readily recommended by staff for a memorable meal. For dessert, make sure to have the famous Millefeuille du Café de la Paix
I've always wanted to dine in Café de la Paix, ever since my first trip. The fifth trip I finally made it. Maybe I was too influenced by my desire to go and by the hype but I was decidedly underwhelmed by the experience.
The belle epoque interior is grand and lovely (being part of the Grand Hotel Intercontinental) but the food was way too expensive for what it was. I should've just come in for a cup of coffee or an effervescent glass of Kir Royal, instead I entered hungry for a meal.
I started off with a glass of Kir Royal (19€ - I know, expensive but it was worth it) to celebrate returning to my favorite city, this was followed up with a 15€ (yes, you read that right - this was even more expensive the Café de Flore) bowl of onion soup. It was "correct" as the French would say but certainly not worth 15 euros. It seemed average, nothing special about it. The soup was joined by a 3€ salade. This was followed up by a plat de fromage (9€ - very nice - a good, round selection of cheese) accompanied by as much bread as you could shake a stick at, then of course was a 1/2 liter of Vittel (7€ - can you believe this price? man, I'm an idiot) ended by a dessert of mille feuille (12€) and espresso (6€). I always go for the crème brûlée as it's my favorite and I've never ever had a bad one, either in France or in the US. But, they did not have my favorite dessert, so I opted for the mille feuille. I'm going to sound like a *** for saying this and totally shred my (undeserved) reputation for being a Paris foodie BUT the dessert tasted exactly to me like honey-glazed Ritz crackers with vanilla pudding in between the layers. Nothing at all special about it. Can someone please explain to me the allure of mille feuille? I just don't get it. Well, I don't get profiteroles, either. I'll stick with my favorite, I suppose.
Photos: November 2007
Favorite Dish The plat de fromage was worth 9€ to me. Very French, a nice variety, and of course having free bread accompany it makes the price seem worthwhile.
All in all, the meal was a whopping 71€ ($104)! Of course, you're paying for the grand décor, the porcelain plates, the real silver silverware, the unobtrusive service. Maybe I'd have been happier if I could've had a table by the window. Those looked lovely!
I think I'll try Le Grande Café next time. They at least have a better dessert selection.
Designed by Garnier, the architect of the Paris Opéra, Café de la Paix was therefore created to match the magnificence of the neighbouring theatre. During the Parisian Belle Epoque, Café de la Paix was the meeting spot for the Paris high and literary society. While it has held on to its décor and fame, it is now simply another Paris café in a busy neighbourhood. It is definitely worth a stop when visiting this neighbourhood.