Any list of the best restaurants in Paris is bound to be long. The city has such a rich culinary offering.
Of course, for French cuisine, Paris is divine. It’s the epicenter for the very best. It boasts a long and distinguished history of gastronomy and more than 80 Michelin Star restaurants.
In Paris, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to grasp why food and culinary excellence is a French obsession.
For the discerning traveler who loves to indulge in the finest dining experiences, Paris is a must.
Allan Ducasse, renowned Michelin-starred chef, has long championed the influence of French cuisine. Today, he sings the praise of a new generation of chefs plying their trade in the City of Light.
With their DNA forged in the best traditions of French cuisine, these younger star chefs create dining experiences that fit perfectly with modern lifestyles. They blend the best in French culinary traditions and modern trends.
Thomas Boullault, chef at L’Arôme, is a fine example of this new generation of master chefs.
L’Arôme, for divine French cuisine in Paris
Here at Wonderful Time, we’re big fans of Thomas Boullault and the team at L’Arôme. It’s one of our top local picks to add to your list of the best restaurants in Paris to experience.
Now, of course, we’re biased. But we’re not alone in singing the their praise.
In 2009, the esteemed Michelin Guide bestowed Thomas Boullault with his first Michelin star. At the time, he was only 29 years old. That’s quite an achievement, considering how tough it is to join the Michelin star league.
Most recently, in 2015, Thomas received the prestigious award for the best meat dish at Les Lebey de la gastronomie. The awards are widely recognized as the French “Oscars” for culinary and gastronomic excellence.
Take a look at this video of Thomas preparing and presenting his award winning dish.
And of course, the most rigorous and demanding critics are his customers. Here’s a few examples of what they say about his French cuisine and fine dining at L’Arôme.
Wow! What an amazing culinary experience! We went as a party of 5 and received a warm welcome and that service continued throughout the evening, ultimately with the head chef personally greeting us! The food itself was an experience we will never forget …
A lovely intimate restaurant where the food is the star.
You expect the best of what food is in its seasonal peak. You expect the food to taste delicious. You expect an inventory of excellent wine pairings. You expect every course to be excellent. What you don’t expect is that everything will be better than you might expect.
For Michelin Star dining in Paris, add L’Arôme to your list.
L’Arôme, Michelin Star Paris at its best
Earning a Michelin Star is no simple task. Doing so in the competitive environs of Paris is, perhaps, tougher still.
One doesn’t wake up a Michelin-starred chef. It takes a very particular dedication to mastering the art of fine cuisine.
Michelin rewards the quality of the meal, of course. But it also looks at many other essential values. The trajectory of the chef is important, too. They have to demonstrate a mastery of the traditions of fine cuisine. The history of the restaurant’s ability to deliver a complete dining experience, day after day, is also essential. Stability and consistency is primary.
Thomas Boullault and the whole team at L’Arôme, in the kitchen and front of house, represent that level of consistent excellence.
What it takes to become a Michelin-starred chef in Paris
When you sit down to dine at L’Arôme in Paris, know this; behind every single aroma, bite and sensory exploration, there are years of masterful experience.
Thomas Boullault was born into a universe where gastronomy was an essential part of life. When other kids were dreaming of being firemen or astronauts, Thomas set his sites on becoming a chef.
Thomas attributes his love of cuisine to his father, to whom he dedicated his first Michelin star. In the Boullault home, meals were a family affair. They were also inextricably linked to the region of his native Sologne.
He began his career in the inns of Sologne. His father landed him his first job in the kitchen at La Tête de Lard à la Ferté Imbault. There he stayed for two years before heading to L’Auberge de Lanthenay. It was there he began to discover more elaborate styles.
Soon it was time for Thomas to try his luck in the big city. In record time, he began a rapid rise through the ranks at some of the best restaurants in Paris.
First off, Thomas landed a coveted spot with the team of Philippe Legendre at the renowned restaurant of George V. There he discovered the world of culinary luxury; “the cuisine of palaces and the art of working with a gigantic brigade”.
Later he moved on to join the team at Seize and then the Royal Monceau. At the Royal Monceau he worked under the orders of Christophe Pelé. That was the true beginning of a passion for fine cuisine developed “on the spot”. Dishes were elaborated from seasonal products sourced locally each day.
It was in 2007, when he crossed paths with Eric Martins, that he got his chance to head his own kitchen. He became chef at L’Arôme.
Thomas had decided his goal was to earn his first Michelin Star by 30 years of age. It was not to be. At 28, he obtained the coveted award.
Fine dining & the team behind L’Arôme
When people talk about the best restaurants in Paris, they’re generally thinking about the top chefs.
Of course, the quality of a restaurant’s chef is essential. But great chefs don’t create exceptional dining experiences alone.
Behind every great chef is a huge expert team. There’s the essential brigade of trained professionals in the kitchen. There’s also the highly professional team front-of-house under the leadership of restaurant owner and manager, Eric Martins.
Michelin-starred restaurants are much more than the product of exceptional food. A refined ambiance and excellence in service has to be impeccable, too. L’Arôme masters this refined culture at table.
At L’Arôme, everything is focused on your journey. Service is tailored to maximize your pleasure and sensory expansion through cuisine.
From the moment you enter L’Arôme, you’ll note the tones of fine dining excellence. It starts with the ambiance. You see the kitchen opened to the dining room. This allows you to connect directly with the art and mastery of Thomas and his team.
And, of course, you’ll see Thomas’ beaming face greating you, too. Despite the pressures, he always seems to muster that expression.
Then you sit down, ready to dine …
Thomas’ menu is a very personal affair. Each plate has it’s own unique meaning. The balance of each offering is determined by one flavor, offsetting another.
Every dish is masterfully elaborated using the fresh ingredients of the season. The ingredients are sourced locally from Paris’ fresh food markets and from exclusive suppliers around the country. It’s one of the primary secrets of a master chef; their ability to source the very best ingredients.
Wouldn’t it be amazing to accompany Thomas as he does just that? You can. Just take a look at this Wonderful Time French cuisine experience.
At L’Arôme, you can opt for lunch or dinner. There are two services a day. Each service is elaborated on the day, always reflecting Thomas’ passion for the seasons and their uncommon products. Each plate is a surprise of aromas.
For dinner, you can order from the menu or, alternatively, let Thomas guide you more intimately. Opt for his menu “carte blanche” where he’ll prepare his own choices using one special product in season.
Of course, since the dishes are prepared fresh each day of the week, working with the seasons and very best ingredients, we can’t tell you exactly what will be on the menu the day you dine.
For a good indication, though, take a look at the menu today by clicking here.
And since a picture “paints a thousand words”, let your eyes guide your appetite.
Exceptional dishes paired expertly with the finest French wines
When Eric Martins welcomes you to L’Arôme, it’s so you can experience much more than sharing the very best in French cuisine. He also wants to share with you his passion for French wine. That’s where he’ll treat you to a fabulous selection of the very best wines from many regions across France collected in his cellar.
A fabulous cellar doesn’t appear over night, of course. Over the years, L’Arôme has built up a solid reputation with lovers of good wine.
The restaurant is decked out with a rich offering. Enjoy excellent vintages by the glass or bottle. You can see the best vintages behind the glass cellar.
Renaud Laurent is L’Arôme’s sommelier (wine steward). He’s the consummate trained and knowledgeable wine professional. His specialized insight on all aspects of wine service and food pairing will be at your service.
There are wines for every occasion. Perhaps you’ll try a Silex 2012 from Domaine Didier Dagueneau with your wild cod, summer truffles and lite artichoke mousse. Maybe you’ll discover the Nuits-Saint-Georges Blanc 1ere Cru Les Terres Blanches 2009 from Rion with a suckling veal chop and chanterelle mushrooms.
And don’t worry about not knowing what you’re getting by the name. Renaud and Eric will take you through every detail to help you choose, or simply suggest the the best pairing.
When you’ve finished eating, try one of their digestifs. One of L’Arôme’s pearls is a Bandol from Château de Pibarnon. It will seduce you with its delightful delicate spice and dry fruity flavors.
Sound good? It certainly is.
Find out for yourself by making a reservation here: http://www.larome.fr/en/reservations/
You can even go a step further by meeting with Thomas before your meal. Spend the morning with him, visiting his favorite fresh food market, wine cellar and picnicking on the River Seine.
This is certainly one excellent way to go straight to the heart of experiencing the best restaurants in Paris.