This lively bistro had been on our list of Paris restaurants to try for several years. When we recently found ourselves in need of a lunch spot far from the Rugby World Cup crowds that were clogging up more tourist-friendly areas of the city, we hopped on the Metro and made a beeline for this neighborhood favorite in the 11th.
We will preface our comments by saying that we live 90 minutes from Lyon and we are not huge fans of Lyonnaise food. So a truck-stop themed bistro serving Lyonnaise food is not normally what we are looking for in Paris but we came for one thing — the steak frites. We also don’t like Beaujolais. So after glancing at the menu of 90% offal dishes and wine list of lots and lots of Beaujolais, we decisively ordered a Croque Monsieur for my mom, two orders of the entrecôte et frites—so we could share with Baby J—and the least expensive bottle of Bordeaux on the carte des vins.
We have to say, the food was really good, the wine was really good, and the service was very casual and friendly for a Parisian restaurant. The staff was super accommodating to kids and there was a good mix of locals and American tourists who had most likely heard of the place on popular blogs. We have to say, the steak was good, but you can get steak frites in almost any restaurant in Paris and we’ve not had one yet that is worth a 45 minute metro ride.
We were very pleasantly surprised by the deserts. The pain perdu we ordered was delicious but what really stole the show was the Calvados (apple brandy) granita which, if we were in the neighborhood, we’d go back just for that. There is also a Poire Williams version which would be worth trying.
While one of us was quite skeptical, we really would highly recommend this casual bistro — more for lunch than dinner — specifically for those who are interested in Lyonnaise cuisine and who don’t otherwise have plans to go to Lyon. If you’re only in Paris for a short time, it’s too casual for one of the few nice dinners out that you will have time for, and unless you’re staying in an Airbnb nearby or a hotel around he Place de République, a little too far of a Metro ride from the neighborhoods you’ll be interested to spend time in.
Aux Bons Crus, 54 Rue Godefroy Cavaignac, 75011 Paris, France
+33 1 45 67 21 13