The criteria for a good one is the lack of grease in the broth, the quality of the meat (three different types of beef), the bone marrow (eaten with cooking salt on toasted bred) and the vegetables : celery, leeks, carrots, turnips, onion and garlic. Some people serve cornichons (pickle), others add foie gras. It is considered a cheap winter dish served with harsh wines such as beaujolais and the bouillon (broth) can be finished the day after.
Drouant, the famous restaurant near Opera Garnier, where literary Prix Goncourt is awarded every year in November, comes out as the winner. Definitely a chic venue for such a modest dish ! Chez René, one of my favourite hang-outs on boulevardd St Germain near the Institut du Monde Arabe and the Ile Saint Louis, is number 2 and the atmosphere much more relaxed. Le Roi du Pot au feu and Brasserie Lipp share the 3rd rank. All are wonderful spots for a winter dinner in Paris.
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