Best Paris Restaurants of 2012


In a break from our regular Foodie Fave column, Girls’ Guide food writers Kelly Page, Barbra Austin, and Aurelie Douard look back on some of their favorite Paris restaurants of 2012. Whether you’re after a quick lunch in Oberkampf, a girls’ night out at a wine bar, or a tasting menu showcasing the best French ingredients, we’ve got the tip for you. Let’s start things off in the 11th Arrondissement with the tapas masters at a little place called Auberge Flora.

Auberge Flora’s triple-decker tapas sampler.

Auberge Flora is one of the most warm and whimsical Paris restaurants, where you can dine on a menu of inventive tapas or enjoy fresh, home-cooked mains for a reasonable price. Order the tapas menu and you’ll get a great best-of selection of cold and hot bites.

Pierre Sang Boyer: Pheasant with jus in charred white-onion cups with pickled beets and slivered almonds.

Pierre Sang Boyer’s playful passion for food is on full display in his open kitchen with a new no-choice menu each night. He creatively mixes flavors and textures, adding to the overall fun factor at this lively new restaurant.  

La Chambre aux Oiseux has a vibe that’s always unpretentious and never overwhelming. It’s the perfect spot for whiling away the hours drinking tea, nibbling on cake and writing your memoirs.

A work of L’Art: Pélissier’s cheese and charcuterie boards.

L’Art Source is a great Paris wine bar where you can start your evening or enjoy an entire night of tapas and wine pairings. The assiette mixte is always a crowd-pleaser, offering a nice selection of cheese and charcuterie. 

Chez Aline Eat in at this must-visit lunch joint or stop by for unique yet affordable sandwiches and homemade salads to take out. 

Photo courtesy of Paris Insiders.

Yam’Tcha has reopened and Asian food fans are shouting MERCI. Yam’Tcha is a little gem in the heart of Paris beloved by devotees of delicate and subtle fusion food.

Lamb Champvallon at Terroir Parisien.

Terroir Parisien serves dishes with the freshest local ingredients, expertly prepared by the Michelin-starred chef Yannick Alléno, in a casual setting for an affordable price. Order the deconstructed French onion soup—it will blow your mind.  

Shiitake mushrooms. 

Semilla is a great spot for dining with friends and sharing plates of fresh, well-prepared ingredients in a casual environment. If the shiitake mushrooms are on the menu, order one, but don’t plan on sharing!


Cucumber-pepper gazpacho with burrata mozzarella.

Verjus Reserve now for a creative, well-conceived meal of France’s freshest ingredients expertly prepared in a welcoming environment. Go all in and get the tasting menu with wine pairings so you can see what this warm American couple does best.

Miso-caramelized foie gras at Sola.

Sola offers sophisticated Franco-Japanese cooking in an elegant, relaxed setting. Highly recommended.
Editor’s note: For a gourmet walking trip, check out our DIY downloadable Paris trips.
This post was written by Kelly Page, Barbra Austin, and Aurelie Douard, and edited by Doni Belau.