A French Theater Restaurant
Upon shuffling through the revolving door, you feel as if you've taken a step back in time. Possibly to an old theater or even a palace. The walls are covered with carvings, chandeliers, frescoes, gildings, and moldings. There is a string sense of illusion that you are in the Palace of Versailles or the Palace of Fontainebleau. This restaurant was frequented by CoCo Chanel in Gare de lyon in the early 20's.
A Nostalgic Environment
When you take a look around, you observe the men in suits and the woman elegantly dressed. Yes, today we are dining in a palace restaurant - le Train Bleu. Its not just dining but a time travel. This nostalgic restaurant gives us the most sumptuous images of la Belle Époque. The richest and the upper class gather here in haute couture discussing arts, politics, and their pretentious lives.
You are always greeted warmly and the servers introduce all the dishes in details. The many servers all speak French and English fluently and each well-suited server has their own specialty. Each is responsible for a different part of your meal. One is for the appetizer, another one for wine, and the others for the main dish or the dessert.
Soon after we order, first comes the red wine. We talk about our trip in Paris. We just cannot believe that we are leaving Paris and heading for another destination. ''I must come back here one day'' I murmur to myself.
Then we order salmon and foie gras for the appetizers with white wine. In France, how can we not try foie gras? After tasting it with bread, the smell lingers. Now we know why the French cannot resist it. And the wine is Sauvignon Sémillon from Chateau Haut-Grelot, Blaye-côtes-de-bordeaux. Its taste is blended with grassy aromas and vibrant acidity.
The highlight is definitely the main course: chicken and mutton. The chef comes to our table and professionally slices the mutton. It is a privilege to enjoy every fine piece of the meat. The taste has various levels from outer cooked layer to inner semi-raw center. And the red wine is from Château Laroche Joubert, Côtes de Bourg (Bordeaux). It is fruity claret and not bitter at all.
And for dessert, a grand cru chocolate cake and a rum baba. The master pours the chocolate and the rum on the spot, respectively. The grand cru chocolate cake is a profiterole with vanilla ice cream. They are so sweet to neutralize the agreeable aftertaste of our main courses. The rum baba with citron flavor is different from the traditional one. The whipped cream is not filled inside but kept aside at your choice. However, you can tell the master how much you want for the chocolate or rum.
An Unforgettable Memory
Last but not the least, we enjoy every sip of the tea after having our pleasant 4 hours here. I almost think that I am, especially in this newly furbished palace, as close as if in the year of 1900. Paris just holds the world exposition, and the higher class and the best international artists are gathered here to appreciate the supreme decoration of the restaurant, and to discuss the people they met and the things happening in this city. Truly, this is one of the best moments of my life.
To enjoy a decent meal, you must reserve in advance. If you have no idea how to order, you may choose the Arts Menu (Le Menu des Arts 65€) or the Traveller Menu (Le Menu du Voyageur 48€). We suggest you download the coupons from O'bon Paris to have 20% discount on all the meals in the restaurant (exclude the bar).
Le Train Bleu (The Blue Train)
Open Hours: 7:30am-10:00pm
Phone: +33 1 43 43 09 06
Address: 2nd floor, Gare de Lyon, Place Louis Armand, 75012 Paris, France
Take a look at the Map- O'Bon Paris Map