Besides restaurant Le Procope (1686) and La Tour d'Argent (1582), La Petite Chaise is considered one of the oldest restaurants in Paris and has a delightful ambience; it is not large and this adds to its charm and intimate feeling.
The restaurant owes its name to the popular distortion of Old French "chèze" (Latin origin "casa") which meant isolated house or hamlet. The construction of the building, which shelters it dates from 1610, was on the way to Garnelle (Garenne in old French) which is now the Rue de Grenelle.
In 1680 a certain Georges Rameau was selling wines in this very spot. With the wines, some food was being served and has been served since.
The reputation of the place spread quickly making it the "rendezvous" of many great minds. They used to fry fish from the Seine and game from the surrounding woods.
The well-known gourmet, Brillat Savarin, wrote amazing reviews of the menus in his book "la physiology du goût" (1826). At this same time period, la Petite Chaise was likely to receive famous people like Musset, George Sand, Juliette Recamier, Chateaubriand and others, living nearby.
In the beginning of the 20th century, artists and actors gathered here after show-time. Cabaret stars from Montmartre traveled to La Petite Chaise to be sketched by famous painter Toulouse Lautrec. Sometimes, some very "close" relationships continued after the dessert. Singers would pour out their hearts with love ballads under the restaurant windows.
François Mitterand, when he was a student, made the Petite Chaise his headquarters.
Today, politicians, literary artists, actors, artists, still do not forget to come to La Petite Chaise.
The menu is traditionally French: Burgundy snails in garlic aniseed butter sauce, Homemade duck paté with onion jam, Roasted fillet of salmon served with a white sauce, Steak tartar (raw, seasoned prime ground beef) served with sauteed potatoes or green salad, Bitter chocolate cake with a light custard cream sauce... a wide choice to come back for several times!
La Petite Chaise
36 rue de Grenelle