You can probably
guess that "resto" is slang in France for...you guessed
it...restaurants. And when you are living or visiting in and around
Dijon, you must take time to enjoy the fine Burgundian cuisine at
one of the many cafes, brasseries, creperies and restaurants that
call Dijon home. Burgundy isn't France's "gastronomic capital"
for nothing! But first, a few Dijon "rules":
- Don't forget to
mop up all the sauce with your bread. The cleaner the plate, the
- Set the bread on
the table. You won't find a bread plate here.
- Don't ask for butter,
then be surprised if they charge you for it.
- Do ask for a "carafe
d'eau" if all you want to drink is tap water. It is fine
to drink and tastes good(to me, anyway). But if you prefer to
spend several dollars on bottled water, I can't stop you. Just
order Evian or Vittel if you want water "sans gazeuese"
or Perrier or Pellegrino if you like the bubbles.
- Be patient. French
waiters take their time. They allow you to eat and talk. Don't
be surprised if they don't acknowledge you right away. They'll
appear when they are good and ready. If you want instant service
go to McDo's! Unless you're at a busy cafe or brasserie, French
servers won't bring the check unless you ask: "L'addition,
s'il vous plait". In Paris, however, request "la note"
when you want the bill. This will tell your server you understand
you are in Paris. You will appear trendy even though you are wearing
your high school jersey, Cubs baseball hat, and beat-up sneakers.
- You won't get ice
unless you ask. And even then, you'll probably just get one cube.
This was my hardest adjustment.
- Tip 5 or 10% if
you liked your service. Tip is always included, and should say
so on your bill. You don't HAVE to tip. Usually they add between
10 and 15% for service. But, if you normally give 20% in the US,
go ahead and make a servers day and make up the 5 to 10% difference.
- Do bring restaurant-vocabulary
translations with you if you want to be sure of what you're getting.
- Restaurants don't
open for dinner until 7pm, some not until 730. The French eat
and I have always enjoyed our meals, with rare exception to the
contrary. In Dijon, you really can't go wrong.
Three notable restaurants
that have 1 Michelin Star are:
Hostellerie du Chapeau Rouge (my dad ate here and loved it)
- 5, rue Michelet. Menus 41/100€. 03 80 50 88 88 chapeaurouge@
Pre aux Clercs (we had a delicious lunch here when Jeff was
invited to speak at a Rotary meeting) - 13, place de la Liberation.
Menus 36/49/96€. 03 80 38 05 05 Email: email@example.com
Stephane Derbord - 10, place Wilson. Menus 25€(for a lunch
you won't soon forget)/88€(dinner). 03 80 67 74 64. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
you spend alot, or a little, you can expect a great meal. It's all
good! But don't be too picky. I understand if you don't want to
eat horse or snails without someone telling you, but really, trust
the chefs. Travel is also for expanding your culinary experiences!
If you're hesitant about speaking French, try the places on Place
Darcy. These restaurants cater to tourists more than the little
out-of-the way places, and generally there will be an English-speaking
server around. The following are places we have personally been
to and sampled several dishes. As you can see from the selection,
we enjoy menus from around the world! If you go to a restaurant
I have suggested, please let me know what you thought.
Here are some of
my personal Dijon recommendations...
Cafe: Cuban. Good menu prices, good food. Great atmosphere with
nice three-season terrace. Fabulous drinks (Mojitos!). On the market
square at 2bis, rue Claude-Ramey. They have a 10€ lunch menu
M-F. WiFi. Closed Sunday for lunch. Phone 03 80 50 05 88. Email: email@example.com
Bon Pantagruel: Traditional Burgundian. Rustic one-price three-course
menu: Dinner 22,95€, Lunch 11,80€ with "add-ons"
if you're interested. Friendly, always busy. Reservations a must
on weekends and summer evenings. Open 7 days. On the market square
at 20 rue Quentin. Phone 03 80 30 68 69. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Le Taj Mahal: Indian.
Excellent Indian food, the best we've sampled in our travels. Although
we've never been to India! Staff is pleasant, and this restaurant
is family-run on a little street next to the old Palais de Justice.
The nan au fromage will knock your socks off. 8 rue Bouhier. Phone
03 80 30 54 61. Closed Monday lunch.
Le Savoyarde: French
Savoie region. Fondue (but not the fondue of America), Raclettes,
Tartiflette. 13bis, rue d'Assas off rue de la Prefecture. Phone
30 80 73 60 35. Menu from 13-25€. Closed Sundays, and July
14-20 August every year. Best to eat here in the colder months.
In summer it will be stifling hot. Small place, popular, great ambiance!
L'Entresol: Good for
vegetarian selections. Exclusively uses biological (BIO) products.
Meat and fish is also served. Open only for lunch, closed Sundays.
At 27-29 rue Musette, look up at the corner near rue Godrans to
see it! Phone 03 80 30 15 10.
Cafe de la Prefecture:
serves lunch 12-2 weekdays, Order the plat du jour! Excellent service
with a smile. Fish is always the plat du jour on Fridays, and the
daily specials are always market-fresh. Ask about the dessert du
jour also! 48 rue de la Prefecture. 03 80 73 20 11.
Osaka: Japanese. Excellent,
fresh sushi selections. Good menu for brochettes ( like shish-ke-bobs)
- come with an excellent sauce. I like the hot towels at the end.
Your kids will like the (live) Koi pond. Closed Sunday night. At
13 rue Musette. Phone 03 80 50 17 51.
Le Sauvage. Grilled
meats, regional cuisine. Nice atmosphere, uses old hearth to grill.
Huge portions. Get an entree and a plat only if you're really hungry.
Otherwise, just a plat will do! For the potato "side",
I recommend the gratin. The house drink is nice if you like sweet
drinks. Terrace in courtyard. 64 rue Monge. Phone 03 80 41 17 33.
Open everyday thanks to the hotel.
Le Bistrot des Halles:
Traditional Burgundian. Facing the market at 10, rue Bannelier,
this large restaurant offers 17 & 30€ menus. Open T-Sat.
03 80 49 94 15. Owned by the 1-star Michelin 'Pre Aux Clercs' people.
La Concorde: Cafe/Brasserie.
Great location near arch at 2, place Darcy. Open all the time, 7am
to 1am. Popular tourist spot, but also a true Dijon institution.
Good menu selections - make sure you check the plat du jour. I've
never gone wrong with this option. They also make great salads:
the big one is BIG, good for a meal in itself, the small salad great
for a small appetite or snack.
8, place Saint Benigne. Open until 11:30 pm on Fri/Sat. Menus 19/30€.
03 80 41 86 76
L'Epicerie & Cie:
Traditional Burgundian. 5, place Emilie Zola. Menus at lunch 9,9€.
03 80 30 70 69
La Petite Flamande:
Traditional Burgundian. 9, rue des Bons Enfants. Menus 11,3/19,8€.
Good value! Closed Saturday evening, Sundays, and holidays 03 80
67 16 56
Le Gustoso: Italian.
94, rue de la Liberte. Excellent pizza! 14€ menu. Closed Sundays.
03 80 30 79 88
Italian. 30, rue Berbisey. Menus 18/35€. Open Tues-Sat. Closed
15 days in August. 03 80 30 53 33
Beyond Dijon: Burgundy
Ma Cuisine: Burgundian.
Beaune, in the passage Sainte-Helene, just off Place Carnot on a
pedestrian-only street. Phone 03 80 22 30 22. Closed Wednesdays
and weekends, plus all of August and various school holidays; best
to call in advance.
Montrachet: Burgundian. Puligny-Montrachet, 10, Place des Marronniers.
Phone 03.80.21.30.06. Open every day for both lunch and dinner.