L'Avant-Goût

Price guide: Mid-range

26 rue Bobillot, Paris, 75013

Price guide: Mid-range

L'Avant-Goût

By Natasha Edwards, your Paris expert

I write for Conde Nast Traveller, Elle .... Read more
#17 of 80
expert-rated restaurants in Paris
Expert overall rating:4.6 out of 5
Food and drink:
4.6
4.6
Ambience:
4.5
4.5
Service:
4.3
4.3
Location:
4.3
4.3
Value for money:
4.6
4.6
Recommended for:
Couples, Families with younger children, Foodies, Mature travellers, Seasoned travellers, No fuss, Relaxation

Expert review of L'Avant-Goût

Tradition revisited in one of Paris's best reborn bistros.

This small red and yellow bistro in the Butte-aux-Cailles gets the recipe for modernised, affordable bistro cooking just right. In fact chef Christophe Beaufront has been rather unjustly neglected compared to some of his more media-hungry colleagues, and until I went back recently I'd forgotten just how good his cooking is and how pleasant the relaxed, unpretentious atmosphere – but plenty of people clearly do know; it's still full over a decade after opening – always a good sign.

Food and drink: 

Chef Christian Beaufront cleverly juggles French tradition and cosmopolitan influences – something as traditional as his trademark "pot-au-feu de cochon aux épices", a tender pork stew, is enlivened by his use of spices and also comes in a "Tokyo" version with tempura. The "around a soup" lunch menu is an incredible bargain – on my last visit, creamy fennel soup poured from a jug at table, followed by a thick slice of pollock, served on an excellent ratatouille, although there's no choice so you can sometimes come unstuck. A la carte there's more choice. As well the pot-au-feu de cochon aux épices, try dishes like pork cheeks with quince or succulent veal steak, while almost everyone seems to choose the glass of creamy chocolate for dessert. However, it's in the clever seasoning that the food stands out – lemony spinach, a dollop of black olive tapenade in the soup. And a wine list that promises some regional finds.

Ambience: 

A relaxed, unhurried, spruced-up bistro setting – blown up wine photos on the walls, dangling lights, and a frieze of pigs dancing across the menu. It's busy with chatty locals at lunch ranging from suits to polonecks.

Service: 

The dining room is overseen by Madame Beaufront, with a welcome that is discreet and calm yet friendly.

Location: 

On a busy street in the Butte-aux-Cailles, a villagey enclave in the 13th arrondissement, with convenient métro and bus connections all over Paris from Place d'Italie.

Price advice: 

There's an incredible value 14 euro lunch menu and a three-course 31 euro menu carte; courses can also be ordered individually (starters 10 euros, main courses 18.50 euros, desserts 9 euros).

Other useful branches: 

Across the street, L'Avant-Goût Côté Cellier sells cooked dishes, grocery items and wines.

More information on L'Avant-Goût:

Price guide:
Mid-range
Type:
Bistro, Restaurant
Food:
French, Modern
Address:
26 rue Bobillot, Paris, 75013
Telephone:
01 53 80 24 00
Website:
http://www.lavantgout.com
Serves:
Lunch, Dinner
Opening times:
Tue-Sat 12.30pm-2pm, 7.45pm-10.45pm.
Accepts Credit Cards:
Yes
Reservations:
Suggested
Free tags / Keywords:
soup

Have you been to L'Avant-Goût? Would you recommended it?