Eating with the locals in Paris: Le Tournebievre, Astier and café Loustic

Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you.

So, here I shall share a few of my successes of eating with the locals in Paris – Le Tournebievre (along the River Seine by Notre Dame), Astier (north end of The Marais area) and Café Loustic (also in the 3rd Arrondissement).

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Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you...

Le Tournebievre

Le Tournebievre is full of dark slate and glass with wall hangings alluding to the history of this part of the river Seine. Cosy and friendly, we felt very welcome and happy there.

Eating With The Locals In Paris. Le Tournebievre Bistro Restaurant In Paris.
Table setting.

There are only 3 choices of each course. I like that, as it shows a real confidence in their food. Our expectations are high. As we scan the lunch menu my daughter spies the cocktail list.

Eating With The Locals In Paris. Le Tournebievre Bistro Cocktail List.
Cocktail list.

The staff are brilliant here and although they don’t usually serve cocktails at this time the main chef leaves his kitchen and makes Charlotte a Daiquiri.

Le Tournebievre Bistro Bar. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Bistro bar.

It turns out to be one of the best cocktails we have tasted in a long time. Well done that man!

Drinking cocktails At Le Tournebievre Bistro. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

My tartine with pesto was scrummy. All crunchy, cheesy, moist and moreish.

Le Tournebievre Bistro Starter. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Cheese Tartine with pesto.

The tartare was fishy, fresh, soft with the satisfying crunch of diced vegetables..

Eating With The Locals In Paris. Le Tournebievre Bistro Restaurant Starter.
Crab tartar.

And the snails were, well, very nice (I’m told). I’m yet to go there…

Le Tournebievre Bistro Snails. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Snails.

By now the restaurant was filling up with smartly dressed locals. There were several celebrations going on. The atmosphere was relaxed and chatty.

Ta da! Cassolette Oceane.

We eat this slowly and quietly (for us) as we savoured every bite.

Le Tournebievre bistro restaurant. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Cassolette Oceane.

Le Tournebievre bistro Dinner. Eating With The Locals In Paris

For dessert I opted for this beauty. They called it a Cafe liegeois, a classic in France. It’s all creamy, with sweetened coffee and ice-cream. It’s divine.

Le Tournebievre Bistro Dessert. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Café liegeois.

My daughter went for this tempting little chocolate cake, with its caramel butter sauce.  Daaamn good.

Le Tournebievre bistro Pudding. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Chocolate cake with butter sauce.

 

Eating With The Locals In Paris. Dessert.

The men were super smart and opted for the Cafe Gourmond and got themselves a selection of not-so-little classics.

Funky Loustic Café, 3rd arrondissement, Paris. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Cafe Gourmond.

Café Loustic

Fortunately we do a tremendous amount of walking during our city breaks. So, inevitably we need another pit-stop/re-fuel/excuse for more French coffee. Cue Cafe Loustic.

It’s super funky and full of beautiful students and cool young persons meeting up.

Funky Loustic Cafe, 3rd arrondissement. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

Friendly staff politely put up with our pigeon French and serve us exactly what we wanted (turns out they spoke English very well).

Funky Loustic café, 3rd arrondissement, Paris. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

The coffee was delicious and hit the spot.

Funky Loustic cafe, 3rd arrondissement, Paris. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Coffee and homemade cookies.

The owner, and dude, Chana adds even more soul to the place by offering everyone a little chocolate egg (for Easter).

Loustic cafe, 3rd arrondissement. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

Loving life and feeling refreshed we hit the streets once again.

Astier

Tired after a long but brilliant day seeing the sights, staggering into the brasserie Astier felt like a warm hug as soon as we stepped in. The staff were friendly, helpful and humorous too.

Astier Restaurant. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Specials board.

It’s spring, so of course we all opted for the new seasons asparagus (well I liked the idea of a runny egg, but seasonality sounds better).

Asparagus Astier restaurant. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
New seasons asparagus and runny egg.

Astier Restaurant. French Dining. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

Feeling better already, we’ve settled in. Enjoying seeing the waiter fetch wine from an impossibly tiny cellar.

Astier restaurant Cellar. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Cellar.

My scallop dish was incredibly pretty and as fresh as can be.

Astier Restaurant Scallops. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Perfectly cooked Scallops.

Astier restaurant. Scallop Dish. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

James went for the lamb with all its oniony yumminess beneath and mashed potato naughtiness on the side.

Astier restaurant. Lamb. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Lamb dish.

The table is rather full, no room for that jus.

Astier restaurant Table. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Impossibly small tables.

The restaurant by now was full, buzzing and full of families. We were offered a cheese course. The boys went for it and us girls were happy to let our dinner get down ready for a dessert.

Astier restaurant. Cheese Dish. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Cheese course.

A beautiful tray of cheeses were set on our table. No wonder you are eating with the locals in Paris here!

Astier Restaurant Cheese Tray. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Incredible selection…

Being English we politely waited to be served, happily discussing the merits of this and that type of cheese.

Astier Restaurant. Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you...

Still waiting…

Astier Restaurant Cheese Selection. Eating With The Locals In Paris.

Finally, the waiter come over and asks, ‘What are you afraid of? Please, help yourself’.

Local Astier Restaurant. Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you.

We did, we dug in. We lost composure. We ‘cheesed-up’. Apologies to these two who are much more French chic than we are.

Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you.
Say cheese!

Because their parents are still un-hinged.

Astier Restaurant Paris.

Thankfully, the cheese was removed and desserts arrived.

I take chocolate mousse very seriously and this was in my top 3 of my life time. My current favs were served at the Hotel Eden in Rome and a tucked away restaurant in Florence. This one had honeycomb pieces within in and a chocolate sauce too!! It may have pipped the others at the post.

Astier Restaurant Dessert. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Sensational chocolate mousse.

This pineapple rum baba number was lovely too.

Dessert, Astier restaurant. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Pineapple rum baba.

But this classic was lush and loved by all.

Astier Restaurant Classic Dessert. Eating With The Locals In Paris.
Profiteroles.

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Booking a restaurant, bar or cafe where you are eating with the locals in Paris has become a quest for me. A bistro or brasserie brimming with neighbourhood Madames and Monsieurs is like hitting the jackpot. You feel more immersed within their culture and somehow reassured that the famous French palette will guide you.

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11 Comments - Write a Comment

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