La Frégate’s convenient location across the Seine river from the Louvre and just a few blocks away from Musée d’Orsay makes it a frequent dining spot on my visits to Paris. Authentic and honest French food with a traditional atmosphere are persuasive assets of this brasserie.

La Frégate

Cuisine: French traditional

Visit: April 2012

Price: medium high for Paris

Atmosphere: Families are the most frequented diners here, but also couples and friends come along. It is an elegant and traditional brasserie so not many young, cool and trendy Parisians hang out there. It feels casual, friendly and the service makes it a pleasant dining spot between your browsing through the nearby museums. Many locals frequent La Frégate since it is food is honest and reliable.

Food: From snails through frog’s legs you can savor all the traditional French dishes at La Frégate without fuss and worry that loss of authenticity. I come to this brasserie almost every time I visit Paris and anything I have ordered from the menu has been so far great. The Frog’s Legs are crispy and delicate, much better than the chewy version of this dish in China. Served simply with parsley and garlic, bread is their ideal companion. The Escargots or the Burgundy snails in butter and herb sauce cannot be better. With fresh bread dipping into the buttery sauce this is an excellent dish with a glass of crisp white wine such as Sancere (Sauvignon Blanc) or Puligny-Montrachet (Chardonnay) from Burgundy. Luckily, the French know how to make their bread – always fresh, crisp and simple without any spices, so it goes well with many cheese or sauce-based appetizers.

Les Escargots - Bourgogne snails

The Onion Soup au Gratin with a crust of cheese on the top is a lunch on its own. Intense onion flavor, melting bread and warm goooey cheese stretching like spaghetti when eaten with a spoon. Strangely, I like it for a late breakfast sometimes. Another soup I love here, for its incredible condiments, is the fish soup. La Soupe de Poissons et sa Sauce Rouille is a rich fish soup eaten with a crispy slices of baguette, egg and saffron-based rouille sauce and grated cheese on the top.

Soupe oignon au gratin

If you want to start with something light, La Frégate has a great selection of oysters not only from France and they recommend a bottle of white Pouilly Fumé with it.

From the main courses the Sole Meunière with potatoes is a great pan-fried or sautéed (often you can choose) sole served with amazing rich sauce Meunière consisting of brown butter, parsley and lemon. It tends to be served as a fillet and is quite big so be hungry for that.

La Frégate has such a good selection of cheese that I rarely order a desert there and rather have a cheese plate with a glass of wine. The selection of desserts is very wide so if you feel like Tarte Tatin or Crêpes Suzette please yourself. I have seen many kids enjoying them and sharing unwillingly with their parents as they probably were so good.

Drinks: The wine list is quite small, but good. From a small budget to a more expensive bordeaux and champagne. By the glass and half bottle selection is what I like about this place the most as I do not need to drink too much and savor more types of wine.

Opening hours & contact: Open every day from 11:30am – 11:30pm; Telephone: +33 (0)1 42 61 23 77