Probably the best place to eat in France, certainly the best place I've ever eaten in my life. A French cousin took me there in 1966 and I can remember every mouthful, starting with the red mullet en croute and ending with the raspberry liqueur. Heaven! Is it still as good? Take me there and I'll tell you.
More recent visitors like the food but not the bill, so don't go unprepared. After your lunch, have a gentle walk round one of the beautiful golden limestone villages, or work off the calories in the hilly Monts-d'Or behind Collonges.
40 Rue de la Plage 69660 Collonges-au-Mont-d'Or, France
+33 4 72 42 90 90
Google map: bit.ly/XVoGGi
> Paul Bocuse, Auberge du Pont de Collonges
Paul Bocuse, Auberge du Pont de Collonges
40 rue de la Plage | Collonges au Mont D'Or, 84240 Lyon, France
+33 (0) 4 7242 9090
This is a really nice little restaurant serving unpretentious Lyonnais food.
The service was good, although obviously being a bit away from the tourist area there was no English spoken. This did lead to us ordering calf's brain by mistake, but we couldn't really send it back, and it was actually quite tasty.
The wine good, as expected, and the bill was fairly reasonable.
One I would recommend, although it might be worth looking out your phrase book if you're not confident of your French.
Typical tourist restaurant in the old town.
Two starters, mains and desserts together with two beers cost €35.
Starters were basic and mains were bland. Still, it was very busy but not the best place to go. 5/10.
23 Rue St Jean, 69005 Lyon, France
+33(0)4 78 42 25 13
Google map: bit.ly/qCdNrI
Very popular bar on Rue Garet, a very busy area in Presqu'ile. Serves fairly decent pub grub.
A lot of outdoor seating on both sides of the road.
The bar has a bizarre shrine to smokers. The owner has undertaken a smoking experiment (see article below).
9, Rue Garet, 69001 Lyon, France
+33(0)4 78 28 48 11
Google map: bit.ly/nm853s
Absolutely wonderful bouchon in Lyons.
Bouchons are traditional restaurants in Lyon that appeared at the start of the 20th century and flourished in the 1930s. They have their origins in cooks from wealthy households who lost their jobs due to economic conditions. These cooks set up restaurants serving food for the working class.
The fare is hearty and the menu is limited but these bouchons have a great atmosphere.
Au Petit Bouchon Chez Georges ticks all the boxes. Good food with a really friendly atmosphere. The staff wise crack from the moment you get in!
We had a chicken liver gateaux and herring as starters. For our mains we had fish and the tablier de sapeur (marinated tripe coated in breadcrumbs & fried in a pan). We also had two hearty desserts. Along with wine, we ended up paying €70.
Not all places that claim to be bouchons are authentic. However this is one of the 22 'Authentique Bouchon Lyonnais' identifiable by a metal plaque of a clown with a glass of wine on the outside wall.
We had no booking but stuck our head around the door and managed to get a table for 7.30 pm.
One of Lyon's few non-smoking bars, the Cafe 100 Tabac (say it out loud - you'll get the joke even with schoolboy French) is in a busy little side street off the main Rue de La Republique. It serves reasonable wine and beer at low prices, often has interesting and enthusiastic staff, and can provide a simple meal at lunch or dinner.
The big selling point is the intimate and friendly atmosphere, the art on the walls, and the traditional Lyonnais style of the building, with exposed stone, wooded beams and a little mezzanine accessed by a tiny spiral staircase. As with so many Lyon bars, space is at a premium, but it's rarely crowded and the small scale means that it's easy to strike up a conversation with your neighbour.
Smokers should try the Cafe 203 (another French-language gag) next door, which is run by the same people.
23, Rue de l'Arbre Sec, Lyon 69001;
tel: 04 78 27 29 14;
The most incredible chocolate shop (try the superlative dark chocolate ganache filled and gold-leaf sprinkled speciality) and next-door salon de thé serving exquisite patisseries and petits fours. A great place for a restorative cup of tea/hot chocolate, sadly in the company of the Lyonnais Sloany set when we went.
42 cours Franklin Roosevelt,
69006 Lyon; Tel: +33 (0)4 78 24 37 98
fax: +33 (0)4 78 52 67 77;
Typical, bustling, bouchon lyonnais with a menu at 27 euros, including specialities such as hot saucisson, quenelles, St Marcellin cheese and much, much more. There’s an outdoor patio, which is heated in winter. Wonderful wines start at from 15 euros a bottle.
Serves late, but you need to book.
56 Rue Mercière, 69002 Lyon; tel: 04 78 37 6735;
They pack them in at this traditional, unpretentious 'bouchon' and booking is essential unless you turn up at 11.30am.
People eat early in Lyon and in between strict hours - you won't get an order in if you turn up any later than 1.40pm. This place is small and busy, and there is a choice of three set menus, all very good value.
We had four courses for 21 euros - salade Lyonnais with croutons, poached egg and lardons, then typical regional beef and sausage dishes, followed by local cheeses and then dessert.
11, rue des Marronniers, Lyon;
If the rich Lyonnais cooking all gets too much, this Japanese restaurant does really fantastic sushi at a very good price. 20 euros buys two people miso soup, salad, a huge platter of sushi and sashimi, rice and a plate of skewered meats. Friendly staff and peaceful surroundings
Chez Fyfy, Rue des Marronniers, off Place Bellecour
Lyon chef Paul Bocuse has a flagship restaurant on the outskirts of Lyon, but this is a chance to sample his cooking at a far cheaper price. A three-course meal here with wine came to £80 for two people, and local and regional specialties are all well done. It's a lovely old-fashioned brasserie in design too, with good service.
Le nord, 18 Rue Neuve;
A typical bouchon Lyonnais, centrally located, with friendly service and all the local specialities on a 27 Euro 4 course menu: saucisson chaud, cervelle de canut, foie gras, saint marcellin cheese and amazing beaujolais cru wines selected by the chef (house red Chénas for an excellent 15 Euro). Unlike many bouchons, it is open on weekends & holidays & you can even eat outside (terrace heating outside Summer).
Restaurant Le Mercière 56 r Mercière 69002 Lyon Tel.: +33 (0)4 78 37 67 35 www.le-merciere.com/
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