There will always be more than one reason you come to Paris. There’s the tourist icons, world-class fashions, and of course, some of the world’s best restaurants celebrating fine French cuisine. One of the most celebrated of these, Le Cinq, has long been considered one of the best restaurants in Paris.
Le Cinq Restaurant Review
Michelin stars are of course the most reputable and reliable way of classifying restaurants in France. While Le Cinq currently has two, it may come as a surprise to learn it has previously held three Michelin stars. It was a few years ago when Le Cinq lost its’ third Michelin star, and also then when Eric Briffard stepped in as the new first chef. Given his culinary expertise, exceptional service and overall experience on offer at Le Cinq, it is argued to be only a matter of time before the restaurant regains its third star.
The restaurant is often booked out weeks and even months in advance, so be sure to plan ahead if you are intending to dine at one of Paris’ most renowned restaurants. Given my poor time management skills, I was only able to squeeze in a lunch time visit at Le Cinq, but as it turns out both myself and my lunch companion Emma decided this was in fact a better time of day to experience Le Cinq. With such an extensive and tempting menu, it was impossible not to go all out and select three courses. Welcome dishes from the chef of course accompany these courses, as well as palette cleansers and final sweets. Therefore your dining experience extends over quite some time and the food is so good it is impossible to leave anything remaining on the plate. This led us to conclude that lunch was a more appropriate and enjoyable time of the day to enjoy such a copious amount of food.
As the food is undoubtedly exceptional (this would not be questioned by even the harshest food critic), I shall instead focus on the experience on offer at Le Cinq, as it is the Four Seasons George V flair that sets it apart from the many other Michelin Star restaurants in Paris.
This is quintessential Paris in it’s finest form. You walk through the hotel main lobby and are welcomed by an almost overwhelming floral arrangement. Somehow it is not overwhelming, as tourists flock to the lobby to see the flowers alone, but if they’re smart they’ll also head inside La Galerie for a refreshment.
Once you have passed through the lobby, one of the hotel staff will kindly guide you through to Le Cinq where you will recite your name as if you are a guest to an exclusive party and be ushered in for the extravagant affair. Once we were seated our waiters rushed to retrieve handbag stools before we had time to even think of placing them on the floor. Menus were promptly brought over while a glass of bubbles was being poured and before we knew it the late afternoon lunch to end all lunches had begun.
Feeling hungry after a long walk around Paris earlier in the day, we decided to opt for the full trio – starter, main, and dessert. As portion sizes were incredibly generous for such a gastronomic venture, I would suggest you restrict yourself to only one savoury dish (starter or main) and one dessert. These, accompanied by two welcome dishes and the complimentary sweets cart at the end, will have you questioning whether or not it is acceptable to unbutton your pants at the table towards the end of the meal.
Vegetarian Main Course
Each course was absolutely worthy of each Michelin star. Being a vegetarian was also not a burden, as Le Cinq has a full vegetarian menu on offer. I would however suggest that you switch back to the main menu for dessert as there is a much larger array of sweet treats on offer. My final recommendation would be to arrive without expectations and without perusing the menu before you come. As one of the most celebrated restaurants in Paris, you can be certain to enjoy your experience at Le Cinq. Also be sure to trust your waiter for recommendations and try something a little out of the ordinary you may have not otherwise considered… you will most certainly not be disappointed.
World of Wanderlust was welcomed to Le Cinq as a guest, however my opinion is as always, my own!