I had been planning my trip to Paris for a couple months, which means that I had been researching and planning what restaurants I wanted to eat at for a couple months too.
- Under 50 euros for food, but preferably under 30
- Good reviews or recommendations
- Not touristy
My first stop was Le Timbre, a charming little place in the 6th arrondissement. It is owned by Mancunian chef Christopher Wright, and wow, it is small. Really, really tiny. There are rows of tables on either side of the restaurant with absolutely no space between them. The wait staff has to completely move the table into the middle of the restaurant for one to sit on the booth side of the table. It’s sort of like eating in a much more comfortable church pew, but with less leg room. I couldn’t even cross my legs.
I was so excited for Le Timbre because every single review I’ve read was glowing. And three course for 26 euros for a Michelen-starred restaurant? Well, you can’t beat that.
To start: Soupe de Poisson a l’estragon (fish soup with tarragon)
This soup was not at all what I expected. First off, there was no fish in it. There was a teensy bit of fish flavour, but for the most part it tasted and looked like a bowl of olive oil. The tarragon made it taste a bit dirty, gritty even. After sprinkling a healthy amount of salt on it, I could tolerate it a bit better, but this wasn’t a great start to the meal. 2/10
Main: Magret de canard avec pêche rôtie (Duck with roasted peaches)
I do love a nice duck, and this was a completely respectable interpretation of a classic. The duck was served rare, but managed to have a perfectly crispy outside. The peaches, as with any fruit, was a good accompaniment for a rich meat. It too, however, needed a bit of salt. 6/10
Dessert: Mieulle Feuille
Anyone else think the T in powdered sugar is a bit overkill? Yeah, me too. This mieulle feuille was too big, too rich and too greasy. If you’re going to have 1,000 layers of something, it has to be as light as air. This was definitely not. It’s dessert though, so it can’t be all bad. 3/10
I really wish that I liked my time at Le Timbre more. The service was fantastic and everyone so incredibly nice. And seriously, there are so many amazing reviews of this restaurant (no. 3 out of 5,926 on TripAdvisor) I just keep thinking that it must be a one-off bad experience. Maybe I just ordered the wrong things. But even though 37 Euros for 3 courses, water, a glass of wine and a coffee is a good price for fancy Paris standards, I’m a little reluctant to say I’d go back and spend it all again to try for a better time.
3, Rue Sainte Beuve
+33 014 5491040