When visiting a museum in Paris, it is good to keep in mind that Paris cultural institutions are also home to restaurants that are as delicious as their exhibits.
INSIDER TIP: Reservations are highly recommended, not just on the weekend. If you are not fluent in French, I recommend using this website to make your reservations. They not only show you some photos of the restaurants and approximate prices for a meal, but some even offer up to a 50% discount. Make your reservation here.
For all restaurants, please take a look at our Paris Restaurant Guide with recommendations for each Arrondissement!
Paris Museum Restaurants
Les Ombres at Quai Branly Muséum
Any meal, be it steak and pommes frites or a canard à l’orange; accompanied with a view of the Eiffel Tower, tastes somewhat better. Located on the top floor of the museum building designed by French architect, Jean Nouvel, who also decorated the restaurant, les Ombres is named for the different ways that light affects the Eiffel Tower. One of the best times to visit the restaurant is at night when the Tour Eiffel sparkles. You’ll feel like you are in a fairy-tale. Furthermore, summer guests can enjoy the beautifully decorated outdoor terrace with basins. The menu showcases dishes prepared with ingredients and produce that reflect the traditions of people from Asia, America, Africa and Oceania, such as, Jerusalem artichoke cream soup with candied chestnuts, roasted doe with cumin, or duck filet with tapenade. Seasonal and gourmet menus are available along with a carte. Be sure to make a reservation, as the spot has become a favorite among the locals.
27 Quai Branly
Métros: Alma Marceau, Iéna or Ecole Militaire
Café at the Museum Jacquemart-Andre
In addition to boasting an impressive collection of Dutch and Italian Renaissance paintings, the museum houses one of the most charming Parisian cafes. With Tiepolo frescoes on the ceiling and 18th century wall tapestries, the café is a real heaven. Open for lunch, teatime and brunch on Sunday, the restaurant offers a simple and exquisite cuisine – salads, quiches, eggs or blinis and home-baked pastries – all quite reasonably priced. Tea time in the elegant and tranquil décor includes an assortment of sweets, ice-cream and sorbets. Hungrier guests may opt for the set meal menu. When the weather permits, you may have access to the terrace that overlooks the formal courtyard. A real gem!
158 Boulevard Haussmann
Métro: Miromesnil or Saint-Philippe de Roule
Le Ziryab Restaurant, Institut du Monde Arabe
Perched on the 9th floor of the museum, Ziryab’s contemporary décor will make your jaws drop. Large windows surrounding the room open onto a vast terrace with one of the most magical views of Paris – the Seine and Notre Dame Cathedral. The quality of the cuisine matches the splendid setting: mezzes, mixed grills, chawarma chicken, couscous and honey-based pastries along with a great wine list. Lunchtime and evening menus are available along with an A la Carte option. Ideal for vegetarians.
1, rue des Fossees Saint Bernard
Café Marly, The Louvre
One of my favorite hangouts at any time of the day or night remains the Café Marly. The half-modern, half-Napoleon III era brasserie overlooks the main courtyard of the Louvre and I.M.Pei’s glass pyramid. Both the stunning jewel-toned dining rooms with their molded ceilings and the long and sheltered terrace attract a trendy crowd. Roasted figs, tomatoes and goat cheese cake, and steak tartare figure among the most popular dishes. Gateau au chocolat Costes or coffee and chocolate macaroons are good any day, any time.
93, rue de Rivoli,
1er arrondissement (enter from Louvre courtyard)
Métro: Palais Royal, Musée du Louvre and Pyramides
Written By Brigitte Aflalo-Calderon for EuropeUpClose.com