A La Biche au Bois

Where can you find a restaurant in Paris that serves traditional French food, is wallet-friendly and is not bursted with tourists? I know just the place., which is especially great and convenient for the holidays. 

Since moving to Paris in September 2010, I have been longing to eat at A La Biche Au Bois. If you’re a fan of Paris food blogs, you might have encountered this restaurant through the likes of David Leibovitz, John Talbott and Barbra Austin. With all these new up an coming neo-bistros that served eclectic cuisine at a low price, it’s hard to find honest traditional, home-made, grand-mother style French cooking.  Off the beaten path in the 12th arrondissement, and a couple of blocks from Gare de Lyon station, A La Biche au Bois serves hearty French food. 

Your standard grilled chicken breast or salmon with a side salad is not what you are going to find here. Instead, they make great French classics such as oeufs due mayonnaise and coq au vin. Now, let’s talk about the price; the fixed 4-course menu does not slide over €29 and during the winter time, any gibier you can think of is on the menu.

So far, I’ve ticked two off the list: classic French food and not touristy. Then there’s the price. The fixed 4-course menu currently hovers under €29 and there’s a wide berth of things to order. In the winter, I suggest ordering any gibier (game) that’s on the menu, because they do it right.

A nice full-bodied wine to accompany the food.

So let’s get right to it.

For starters, just order from the list of fresh and home-made terrine. There are many kinds to choose from including your standard foie gras, hare, goat even goose.  

Terrine de Chevreuil (Goat terrine)

Terrine de Canard (Duck terrine)

Terrine au Porto Recette du Chef (Chef’s recipe of Porto wine terrine)

All yummy, gamey, tasty, awesome beginning. 

For plats, you will end up choosing from huge tasty portions of sanglier (wild boar) with chestnuts, cassolette de biche (wild venison stew), partridge with cabbage or Andouillette labelled AAAAA grade.

Coq au Vin

In the smoking hot casserole, I dragged my spoon through the thick, dark sauce and plucked out a piece of rooster leg. It has a much stronger taste than chicken, definitely more gamey but surprisingly meaty and with great flavor with the wine. Just wanted the stew up. 

Cassolette de Biche 

Filet de Boeuf Poele 

 As if I wasn’t full enough, the waiter almost drops a board of cheese that are jammed together on a wood panel. Some of the cheeses include chèvre (goat) rolled in black pepper, bleu d’Auvergne, Pont l’Eveque, and a crumbly Cantal. 

All desserts are also home-made, including your standard but very respectable crème brûlée and crème caramel.

I wanted to have my all-time favorite dessert and French classic apple tart with vanilla ice-cream, but they had run-out!…WHAT?! Perhaps it was for the best, I was extremely full, and then opted for a lighter second choice. Ice-cream…

 To be honest, I would only go there in the winter time because that’s when they do their specialities best. Plus, I felt like rolling home. God, I love winter!

A La Biche au Bois

Address: 45 avenue Ledru-Rollin, 75012
Metro: Gare de Lyon (Ligne 1, 14, RER A)
Closed: Sunday, Closed Monday lunch, Closed Saturday
Telephone: 01 43 43 34 38

One Response to “A La Biche au Bois”
  1. Steve Z. says:

    We love the Biche! Have been eating there since 1999 (and every trip back since then) when we found it in Sandra Gustafson’s “Cheap Eats in Paris”. And by golly, it still is a cheap eat.

    Last ate there Sept. 2011 & will again Sept. 2012. The terrines are wonderful as are any of the main plats, had the coq au vin last time. The house red wine was wonderfully soft & reasonably priced. With all the food, it’s hard to do justice to the cheese tray. For dessert, the Chocolat Liegois is a chocoholic’s delight. We like to go early when the place is all but deserted so we can visit with Bertrand & Celine, the owners& also English speakers. But by the time we leave, the Biche is buzzing.

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