Aux Lyonnais

The history of restaurant Aux Lyonnais started in 1890 as a storage facility, followed by a wine cellar, until the Bistro, or Bouchon (as are described the traditional restaurants in Lyon) was born, in 1914. Passing from hand to hand it became the most famous Bouchon in Paris and soon captivated the emblematic chef Alain Ducasse, who became its owner in 2002.

Keeping all the original lines, the restaurant maintains the aura of the old times, when entering it transports us to the Midnight in Paris movie and we can easily be addressed by Fitzgerald, Monet or Dali. As to the kitchen, Ducasse and his team, headed by the chef Francis Fauvel, respect the Lyonnais tradition, with a classic cuisine, heavier, where meat and its less noble cuts win a main role, as well as the vegetables.

The restaurant is a reference among the Parisians that usually fill the space because of the chef, the tradition, the quality and quantity of the cuisine and for being, possibly, the most accessible of Ducasse’s restaurants.

Lyon charcuterie

We started our meal with a well prepared fresh cheese with herbs, olive oil and pepper, plus a cutting board of traditional sausages from Lyon, well accompanied by pork rinds, pretty crunchy. Excellent and satiating beginning.

Cocotte eggs, scampi and mushrooms
One of the classic starters of the house with a combination of flavors and textures that left memory. Excellent cooking points, not to be missed.

Lyonnais cuisine pot, black truffle and pickles
A species of rillettes, well prepared with an accurate combination of meats, vegetables and foie. Being in season, the black truffles couldn’t be missed and raised the dish to another level. The pickles worked very well as the acid element, balancing the fat and the weight of the dish.

To go with the starters, a Domaine des Espiers, 2012, Cuvée Les Diablotines, a white from Rhône which revealed serious, fruity, with intense aroma and good structure, all this allowed it to work well with all the starters.

Pork Belly, Truffle puree
Ducasse is known for many reasons and one of simplest is his pork belly, here flawlessly cooked, crunchy on the outside but extremely soft on the inside. The puree is worthy by itself, with the right amount of truffles and the combination with the meat and its sauce is at another level. Traditional, simple, but perfectly executed as asked, great dish.

Harmonizing very well with the dish an excellent red wine from 2009, Rasteau from Domaine Gourt of Mautens, a wine with firm tannins, plenty dark fruit and complex aroma.

Crepe, citrus
A version of the famous crepe Suzette, filled with pastry cream flavored with Cointreau and cooked in a reduction of orange juice, zest and fresh orange. A good dessert but too sweet for my personal taste given the size of the dose, not even the fresh fruit managed to balance the ensemble.

Chestnut souffle, Pear sorbet
If the previous dessert did not fulfill me, this was the perfect one. The classic and difficult souffle very well accomplished, with a delicate chestnut taste working well with the sorbet and the flavor of the pear. Already miss it.

With the desserts a rare and cheap sparkling rosé, a Cerdon of Bugey by the hand of Renardat-Fache, a light wine with an amazing color that worked well as end of meal.

The wine list focuses most in the region of Rhône, therefore respecting the region that gives the restaurant its name, not only with the dishes but also with the wines. There’s a nice selection of wines by the glass.

The service is not left to chance, although being a bistro, informal and of traditional register and almost familiar, we cannot imagine that the teams of Alain Ducasse restaurants aren’t well trained, so that even in a relaxed environment any detail was left to chance.

Final Remarks
Aux Lyonnais is an irresistible restaurant, its decoration, though not being the most comfortable, transmits us a certain kind of magic of the old Parisian bistros. Here the doses are gigantic and the image of the dishes is not the most appealing, however, the traditional food is flawlessly cooked with great respect for its origins and the product itself and the flavor is the main goal. The menu is short, so there’s not an option for every taste but if you have a soul open to the discovery of the old and the new, and if you’re not afraid of some ingredients you’ll certainly leave satisfied. Furthermore is it one of the best ways to enter the world of Alain Ducasse, with lunch menus for 32€ and dinner for 45€.

Aux Lyonnais
32, rue Saint Marc – Paris
+33 (0)1 42 97 42 95

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