Wine Dine and Play: The Brasserie at the Café de Paris

The Brasserie at the Café de Paris


















Home of the Crêpe Suzette?
Monte Carlo, Monaco
Cuisine Style: French
Average Price: $$$$
Overall Rating: 3/5
Dined in: October 2010
By Sean Overpeck (CFE)
**A full article and index glossary of restaurants, wines, recipes and travel for 
Wine Dine and Play are in the pages section above, or by following these links:




Executive Chef:
Franck Lafon













In September 2016, Franck Lafon became the new Executive Chef of the Café de Paris Monte-Carlo.  He began working at the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo when he was just 17 years old… and never left. In 1999, he became Chef of Le Côté Jardin.



The Brasserie at the Café de Paris across from the famous Place du Casino in Monaco is the home of the famous Crêpe Suzette, a dessert consisting of a crêpe with beurre Suzette, a sauce of caramelized sugar and butter, tangerine or orange juice, zest, and Grand Marnier or orange Curaçao liqueur on top, prepared in a table-side performance, flambé. The origin of the dish and its name is disputed, however, the creation and where it was first used is not. I dined there in 2010 while spending a few days in Nice, and had been looking forward to having the Crêpe Suzette at the original place of origin. Super excited, I enjoyed a great bottle of wine from the Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOC and good entree, and was ready for dessert…or was I?

Place du Casino

The restaurant was founded on January 1, 1868, and since that time, the Brasserie at the Café de Paris has been a staple icon of fine dining in southern France attracting a full who’s who of royalty, actors, politicians, billionaires, and common folks like you and I. The Crêpe Suzette origin has been disputed but in the end it is a feather in the cap to the brasserie. One claim is that it was created from a mistake made by a fourteen-year-old assistant waiter Henri Charpentier in 1895. He was a Maitre at Monte Carlo's Café de Paris, preparing a dessert for the Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII of the United Kingdom, whose guests included a beautiful French girl named Suzette. This story was told by Charpentier himself in Life à la Henri, although later contradicted by the Larousse Gastronomique

Café de Paris, 1900

A less fantastical version emerges from Elsie Lee's interview with him in the 1950s. There, Charpentier explained at length that (his complicated version began as the dish of pancakes with fruit sauce his foster mother made on very special occasions). The addition of liqueur was au courant among chefs in Paris at the time. The third claim states that the dish was named in honor of French actress Suzanne Reichenberg (1853–1924), who worked professionally under the name Suzette.

The Brasserie at the Café de Paris Monte-Carlo decor features Belle Epoque style windows, recalling the old Parisian bistros, creates a bright and friendly atmosphere. It is an ideal place for lunch or dinner in the heart of Monte-Carlo. Outside on the terrace, the Café de Paris immerses you in the authentic atmosphere of a Parisian bistro. Discreet and private, the terrace offers you the privilege of being “outside” at any time of the year.

Menu:
    • Les huîtres - oysters
    • Le plateau de fruits de mer  - shellfish assortment
    • Les spécialités - starter specials
    • Soupes -soups
    • Hors-d’œuvre - starters
    • Salades - salads
    • Pâtes - pasta
    • Poissons - fish
    • Viandes Grillées - grilled meat
    • Les Classiques - classics
    • Les Plats « Canaille - Typical Brasserie dishes 
    • Garnitures - side dishes
    • Fromages - cheeses
    • Desserts

I started the evening with a little gambling at the Casino dropping 200 Euros in under fifteen minutes, then spending a lot less for dinner afterward. It began with a nice Châteauneuf-du-Pape from Château Mont-Redon in the heart of the Rhone Valley. The wine had a blending of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Counoise, Muscardin, and Vaccarèse grapes. The appellation area is situated on the left bank of the Rhone River, between Orange and Avignon. Tasting notes.

From the daily specials, sandwiches with soup from the pumpkin with potato and French onion. Being close to the border with Italy the brasserie shares a combination of French bistro classics as well as Italian kinds of pasta. For my entree, I enjoyed the Filet de bœuf, sauce Béarnaise Filetto di Manzo con salsa Béarnaise - a grilled fillet steak with béarnaise sauce. Other items of interest from the menu include a tartare of beef, with french fried potatoes, sautéed veal escalope, grilled half chicken with herbs, and beef stew Provençal style with fresh pasta. 

Filet de bœuf

Dessert:
Though the entree was good, I was here for one reason and one only and that was dessert. The Crêpe Suzette was calling my name. I looked over the offerings from the menu just for kicks as I had no intentions of ordering anything else. From pineapple with sorbet, chocolate mousse, millefeuille Prince Albert aux fraises, - A strawberry milfoil, feuilletine au Chocolat noir, glace vanille - Cake with chocolate & vanilla ice-cream and an item that looked fantastic,  a profiteroles à la Vanille and au Chocolat Chaud - Profiteroles with vanilla & hot chocolate sauce. 

Crêpe Suzette

Though I didn’t see it on the main dessert menu I asked the waiter for the Crêpe Suzette and some coffee. The coffee was available, but the crêpe was not on the menu and the chef did not do special orders. A great disappointment considering the main reason for dining here was to eat that crêpe. It was great to tour the Monte-Carlo area, but there were other restaurants of interest in Nice nearer to my hotel that I would have much rather gone to if I would have known. Since I was still a little hungry I went with the profiteroles dessert instead of the mouth-watering crêpe Suzette that I really wanted. Maybe one day when I return to Monte-Carlo I’ll eat at a restaurant near the Brasserie at the Café de Paris and have the crêpe Suzette then if it is still not offered by them.

Profiteroles à la Vanille

Please see these guidelines for Tipping in Restaurants and on following proper etiquette, customs, cultures, and avoiding assumptions when you dine out.


Other Noteworthy French Articles and Restaurants:
Aria Restaurant Modern Australian haute cuisine in Sydney, Australia
Bistrot La Minette Charming French Bistro with movie filmed terrace in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
HobNob Restaurant French & Canadian cuisine at The Charles Hotel, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada
La Colombe Country-style local ingredients w/French flair in Cape Town, South Africa
La Cote Basque Winehouse French & continental cuisine in Gulfport, Florida
La Petite Maison Relaxed French-Italian Restaurant at the DFIC in Dubai, UAE
L’Ecrivain Seasonal Irish ingredients with full modern French gastronomic dining in Dublin, Ireland
Reflets Par Pierre Gagnaire Posh and artful French cuisine + culinary experimentalism in Dubai, UAE
Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud Impeccably prepared French fine dining in Dublin, Ireland
Slightly North of Broad (S.N.O.B) Bistro w/Southern & Lowcountry cuisine in Charleston, S. Carolina
Tetsuya’s Eclectic French-Asian Tasting Menu restaurant in Sydney, Australia
The Dutch Kitchen Buffet of Dutch and French cuisine at the Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam 
The French Laundry French-American fine dining restaurant in Yountville, California
The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français African-French tasting menu in Franschhoek, SA
The Test Kitchen Modern eclectic and Nouvelle Latin cuisine in Cape Town, South Africa

See the whole list by visiting “The Wine Dine and Play Article Glossary


A Few Other Favorite Restaurants and Articles from France:

Countryside French Bistro
Cheverny, France
Haute French Restaurant
 Paris, France
Wine tours and restaurants 
Bordeaux, France
Is Michelin at fault?

A tasting of the Vougeot AOC, caves, and the Hospices de Beaune
Burgundy, France
Haute Gastronomique French restaurant & bistro 
Bordeaux, France


See the whole list by visiting “The Wine Dine and Play Article Glossary by country





Final notes, review basics, observations and more pictures:

Most reviews are subjective, depending on the writer; but they should also be responsible, and respectfully written, upholding the truth, and accurately conveying the experience to the best of the writer's knowledge, even if it includes metaphors the restaurant may not like to read about. My ratings are by the stars I award (from 0 to 5). The rating is calculated on a point accumulation of six separate factors based on individual experience. They include wine and other beverage selections, plate presentation, customer service, restaurant or café ambiance, food quality, and wow factor. To see more details of this rating list, read this article:

Overall from this experience, and the score factors outlined in the ‘about page’ section, based on my individual experience and rating, I give the Brasserie at the Café de Paris a 3 out of 5 stars, meaning that they exceeded my expectations and were far above the average dining experience of most restaurants.
Scores are detailed in the factor chart below:



Formula Factor Conclusions and Overall Ratings
Max Points Possible:
Total Points Awarded:
Total Points deducted:
Ambiance
9.5
9
0.5
Food quality
9.5
7
2.5
Plate presentation
8.5
8
0.5
Customer service
8
5
3
Alcohol and other beverages
10
7
3
Total regular points awarded
45.5
36
9.5
Total percentage — less the Bonus

0.791208791208791

“Wow” factor BONUS
5
2
0
Total bonus percentage

0.043956043956044

Total percentage and bonus for a final star rating

0.835164835164835

Stars Awarded (see chart below)
             0 - 5
3

**A full break down and explanation of the observations and point disbursement is available in the linked article above. To receive a detailed copy of your score, feel free to contact me at any time and I will provide it to you.**

***

Overall Star Rating:
3 of 5 Stars: 
84% Rating with a 2 point “wow” bonus
Exceeded My Expectations in a Dining Experience
Corkage fee’s:
This Restaurant does not list any corkage fee’s however, most American restaurants charge 
$25.00 per bottle
Restaurant style:
Conservative dining
Cuisine style:
Bistro, Café, French
Allergen or dietary accommodations: 
Farm to Fork, Pescatarian, Sustainable, Vegetarian
Reservations:
Required
Walk-Ins:
Accepted, but not guaranteed
Dress code:
Conservative attire
Child policy:


The Restaurants reviewed on this site may have a kids menu or cater to them; however, for full enjoyment of food and wine, it is recommended that kids not to be in attendance, unless they have been trained in proper etiquette. 
If not then:
Hire a Babysitter! 
Experiences:
Place for foodies, Contemporary, Great bar, Great outdoor dining, Good for special occasions, Beautiful décor, Scenic views, Classy, Upscale, and a Neighborhood Gem.
Payments:
Cash, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express
Parking:
Street meter parking
Wifi
The restaurants reviewed on this site may have Wi-Fi, but do not require you to go online, because the excitement of the food and wine alone will keep you too entertained instead of checking your social media and emails.
Noise level:
Medium
Smoking:
Nonsmoking restaurant, and nonsmoking patio
Patio or terrace:
Yes




Food Prices 
(excludes, alcohol, taxes & 20% gratuity’s)

$£€¥ -                Under 50.00 (inexpensive)
$£€¥ x 2 -          51.00- 99.00 (moderate)
$£€¥ x 3 -          Over 100.00 (pricey)
$£€¥ x 4 -          Over 200.00 (expensive)
$£€¥ x 5 -          Over 400.00 (very expensive)


**Currencies reflect the world’s major travelers, restaurant, or wine connoisseur’s**

Currency:
Price
United States Dollar (USD)
$$$$
Great Britain Pound Sterling (GBP)
£££
Canadian Dollar (CAN)
$$$$$
Chinese Yuan (CNY)  
¥¥¥¥¥
European Union (EUR)
€€€€




The Brasserie at the Café de Paris:

Place de Casino, 98000 Monaco
Monte Carlo



Contact Information: 
Restaurant website:
Maître d or host:
 +377 98 06 76 23
Online reservations
Email Contact:
Serving hours:
Central European Time
(GMT, Zulu, or UTC + 1:00) or
Central European Summer time UTC + 2:00
Daily: Mon-Sun
8:00 am - 2:00 am

Social Media 
Accolades:
Facebook link                





****
The worlds best restaurants is a subjective list of who is writing it and changes on a regular basis. The Wine, Dine, and Play best of is based on my highest rated stand restaurants, meaning that the visit was an outstanding or extraordinary experience. From cafés, chains, mom + pops, hole in the walls, to fine dining including a few Michelin spots. Visit the Top 100 page to see the entire list.

A few to tease you with…

Highly creative new American molecular gastronomy tasting menus
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Contemporary-Authentic Mexican Cuisine 
St. Petersburg, Florida, USA
A Re: Start business at “Little High Eatery” 
Christchurch, New Zealand




Other Pictures:









“Culinary perfection consists not in doing extraordinary things, 
But in doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.”

-Angelique Arnauld (1591-1661)
Who is John Galt?


TTFN




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