A dear friend asked me to book her a table near Fondation Yves saint Laurent so I decided I would test for her Les Marches, a bistrot that had been recommended to me all summer long. It is not new at all, but has a divine quality: it is very amicable and simple, and really cheap for the area, the XVI th arrondissement, especially across the street from Palais de Tokyo and its -too- trendy spots. Les Marches is part of Les Routiers, a group of restaurants located on highways all around France, where routiers (truck drivers) stop for a good but reasonable meal. I did not know they existed within Paris!
We had lovely rillettes du Mans to start and radishes with a little creamy sauce. The dish of the day, chicken with French fries and green beans and I had the marinated salmon with potatoes and a clafoutis aux cerises and tarte tatin. With a glass of côte du Rhône.
But more interestingly, the waiters were more handsome one that the other, and so nice, making sure that I had something to drink while waiting for my guest and serving us as fast as Zorro! There are all the usual entrecôte and tartare, kidneys, pied de cochon, but also ravioli and cheese and oeufs mayonnaise, and fish of course. It is mostly a very French menu. What a relief at a time when in Paris, most restaurants serve sophisticated tapas and minimal food.
One can see that clients come often and have a special relationship to the place which was packed even though everyone is still away in Brittany or in Provence.
We returned to see the Zao Wou Ki show at Musée d’Art moderne after lunch and wandered around the spontaneous little gardens grown by the neighbors on rue de la Manutention.
What a lovely way to get back into city life. Les Marches, 5 rue de la Manutention, 01 47 23 52 80, booking is mandatory, 65€ for lunch for two. Open every day!
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