Despite an address located in a touristy area (l'Île de la Cite, just next to Notre-Dame, this bistro has an authentic French atmosphere. ... More
Vieux Bistro (Le)
Despite an address located in a touristy area (l'Île de la Cite, just next to Notre-Dame, this bistro has an authentic French atmosphere. Regulars enjoy the simple, good cuisine, and never get tired of dishes, such as Boeuf Bourguignon (beef stew in Burgandy wine sauce) and Tarte Tatin (caramelized apple upside-down cake). Frequented by celebrities and the renowned of the restaurant world, le Vieux Bistrot (The Old Bistro) will satisfy your appetite as you watch the world go by. There's also a very pretty terrace. A meal ordered à la carte costs EUR46-EUR53.
I travel to Paris quite a bit for business. When in town, Le Vieux Bistro is one of my favorite places for dinner! Especially on a cold night! The reasons are simple. Le Vieux is cozy and their Boeuf Bourguignon is the best I have found in town! The escargot is excellent also. You can make a meal off of the butter and garlic that the escargot is served in! They also do a very good steak.
The staff is pleasant enough but don't be in a rush as they do take their time.
Overall, this is great spot to go right in the heart of the tourist section of town!
Looking to make our December 2004 Paris visit a memorable beginning by reserving a table at Le Vieux Bistro our expectations were naturally on the high side. We were in a nice mood when we arrived a few minutes early before opening time as we had an early reservation. Yes. The owner/staff saw not only us but others who were also there for their reserved tables. No. They would not open the door until the exact time. That was the beginning of a not very nice experience.
We were seated in the front room with other non-locals. I know others mentioned the back room is where they put people like us namely the English speaking visitors and non-Parisian French visitors. But in our case they seated all of us so-called pariahs in the front room. It became apparent this segregation when we saw local French couple after couple march past us to the back room. Not a nice thought to be segregated, but that's apparently still in vogue at this 'bistro'.
The food was mediocre at best. We ordered the famous boeuf bourgignon and it was no better than any other we tasted in Paris. Worse was the owner who was very impatient with us taking a while to decide on the wine. Well, gee, who wants to pay an exorbitant amount for a bottle of wine? But there were no reasonably priced bottles on the wine list, therefore, we had to take a bit more time to decide on how many euro we wanted to part with just to order this wine.
Dessert was unmemorable and we just ordered the typcial cafe after dessert and got out.
We were not pleased and do not recommend Le Vieux Bistro unless you wish to have an evening of pretentious attitude and mediocre food.
Would go back to Paris just for this Beef bourguignon!!!
By A Yahoo Contributor, 8/11/07
The ambiance was amazing, so romantic and great location. We attended mass at Notre Dame then went for our meal, a friend recommended "the old bistro". It did exceed our expectations! Great value for money, we did not leave hungry! We drank a Beaujolais- Morgon, it was delightful! I had vegetable soup to start, which was simple, elegant and tasty, great consistency. My husband had a smoked salmon salad, which satisfied his taste buds and more! We both had the beef bourguignon as it is apparently their signature dish! It was gorgeous, plentiful and dare i say orgasmic! Instead of desert I had another bottle of wine, this time a bordeaux- St Julian, very nice but not as robust and fruity as the Morgon. My husband had the fromage board. ( I don't like cheese). He enjoyed it. Overall a fabulous meal!
Surrounded by tacky tourist shops and restaurants, in the street running alongside Notre Dame, le Vieux Bistro is a very old restaurant that serves traditional french cuisine to a very high standard.
The food we were served was rich and hearty (the starter felt like a main course) and delicious.
I had medium rare duck breast served in a creamy green peppercorn sauce, with dauphenoise potatoes as a amin, and my wife had rack of lamb.
The service was pleasant, and the total bill 105 euros. i would eat there again if in Paris.
We read a recommendation for this bistro in a Paris magazine and decided to give it a whirl. what a mistake!
An hour and a half after ordering, we still hadn't seen any sign of food, not even bread. My cassolette finally arrived - basically a big pot of oil, with overcooked carrots and uncooked potato along with a reasonably tasty pistachio sausage. Rendered inedible by all the oil. For dessert I had profiteroles, which were rock hard.
My companion's meal was better but still unmemorable - boeuf bourguignon and a warm chocolate cake.
Not worth 70E - we ate better the next day at a 3-courses for 15E cheapie!
This was my third visit to this restaurant. This year, 2005, however, things have changed. The staff has gone from elderly and courteous to young and rude. We were put in the back room which was filled with loud Americans, the service was deplorable, and our waiter, when we paid the bill, announced that the service was NOT included! It most certainly was, and when we left, he shouted to us, sarcatically, "thank for the service!" I couldn't believe it. I contacted a well known restaurant critic who told me that the former chef left a year ago, and the restaurant was sold 4 years ago. Out of 6 people,only the leeks were memorable. I guess some of the guides are catching on and not recommending it any more. MME Marchand
Le Vieux Bistro is unpretentious, has history, and is not trying to compete or be anything it is not. It is exactly what to expect from a French Bistro and the emphasis in in the right place - on the food, the qaulity of the ingrediants and the cooking.
The staff were also really pleasant and helpful and had a nice sense of humour.Our waiter Marc, is an asset to the establishment and served us with both wit and charm.
I visited with friends on October 7th and again on the 9th 2005.
Since we did not have a reservation, they were courteous enough to find a table for four dumb Americans. Our waiter Marc was absoulutely excellent, spoke relatively good English and went out of his way to make us comfortable.
The ambience was pure french and the food was Excellent.
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