One of Paris’ oldest neighborhoods, Le Marais entices both tourists and locals alike with its charmingly narrow streets, historic architecture, and fantastic museums and galleries.
It’s also one of the best areas in the city to enjoy Parisian food, which means not only classic French cuisine but also traditional falafel, great couscous, and the latest food trends. Here we round up our some of our favorite Marais restaurants to try on your next trip.
1. Les Philosophes
Les Philosophes is just one of four restaurants in an impressive group owned by respected restaurateur Xavier Denamur.
While all serve up a similar menu, which sticks firmly to Denamur’s philosophy of using organic produce sourced from local producers where possible, Les Philosophes has perhaps the biggest variety on offer. You can’t really go wrong with any of the dishes—everything here is good—although we love the onion soup for a warming winter dish and the classic flan pâtissier (vanilla flan) for dessert.
2. Robert et Louise
No trip to Paris is complete without classic steak frites, and Robert et Louise serves up some of the best, cooked over an open fire at the back of the restaurant for added flavor.
Not only is the food hearty and the portions huge, but the rustic style, red checked tablecloths and a charismatic owner make the whole meal an experience to remember. Make a reservation to ensure you get a table, and come hungry!
3. Breizh Cafe
Breizh prides itself on using high quality and organic ingredients from local producers to make its galettes (a savory pancake made from buckwheat flour) with a huge variety of toppings and combinations available. Don’t even think about leaving without dessert—you’ll want seconds of the crêpe with salted caramel and ice-cream—and don’t forget to check out the extensive cider menu, with more than 60 varieties to try.
4. Chez Marianne
While everyone is lining up outside L’As du Fallafel for its famous take-away falafel wraps, avoid the lines and head around the corner to Chez Marianne (2 Rue des Hospitalières Saint-Gervais) where you can grab a table and relax.
Our tip? Share plates with your friends so you can all try more of the dishes. With plenty of salads on offer as well as falafel, it’s also very veggie-friendly.
You can reserve to avoid waiting, or, like the other popular falafel joints on rue des Rosiers, there is a take-away section if you’re happy to grab and go.
5. Kitchen Paris
Formerly Bob’s Kitchen, the newly renamed Kitchen Paris still serves up many of the same recipes which keep drawing back the old Bob’s regulars as well as some new faces.
Head over for breakfast or lunch (the restaurant is closed in the evening) to enjoy healthy and delicious plates and organic juices, with homemade bagels courtesy of Bob’s Bakeshop and amazing sourdough from Ten Belles Bread. The vegetable stew is also a must try!
Quality produce takes pride of place on Carbon’s regularly-changing menu. The restaurant describes itself as an “ode to nature,” with inspired dishes based around meat and fish cooked over an open fire.
Its contemporary decor provides a stylish backdrop whether you’re with friends (the sharing plates are perfect for a relaxed dinner) or looking for a more romantic spot. There’s also a great “secret” speakeasy bar, La Mina, hidden away downstairs serving up delicious craft cocktails.
It might not be traditionally French, but if you’re wondering where the young, hip Parisians are eating, it’s at PNY.
The burgers are arguably the best in Paris, the decor is fun (every restaurant has its own style, but we love the kitsch and colorful Le Marais outpost), and the service is always spot on. The small chain has also upped its game for vegetarians recently by adding the Beyond Meat patty to all of its burger options.
8. Chez Omar
An institution in Le Marais, Chez Omar serves up traditional French food (the steak-frites and roasted lamb are popular choices) alongside its famous couscous.
The atmosphere is lively, and as the restaurant doesn’t take reservations, the lines can be long, so head over earlier rather than later if you can.
Le Marais, as you can see, is one of the best gastronomic destinations in Paris—if you know where to go. Our solution: spend a morning eating and drinking your way around this charming quartier on our Ultimate Paris Food Tour! We’ll show you only the best of the best—the authentic places Parisians love, and have been frequenting for generations in some cases. Come hungry!
Nicola Leigh Stewart is a travel writer who, after living in London and Madrid, finally settled in Paris. Always thinking about her next meal, her favorite thing about France is the food, and she spends most of her weekends in search of the flakiest pain au chocolat in Paris, the best fromagerie, and more importantly, the best cocktail happy hour.