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Les Petites Sorcières, 14th Arr.

12 Rue Liancourt
France 75014
Tel: 33 1 43 21 95 68
Metro: Denfert-Rochereau's insider take:

When Ghislaine Arabian was chef at the ultraluxurious Pavillon Ledoyen during the 1990s, the restaurant had two Michelin stars. She was a superstar, and she suddenly disappeared. In 2007, Arabian resurfaced and took over this one-room corner bistro south of the Catacombs. True, the tables are still narrow and pushed too close for comfort, and the noise is considerable, but few diners care. The menu of generously portioned classics changes twice daily and ranges across France (Burgundy snails with garlicky butter, Provençal-style grilled swordfish), but the most consistently fabulous dishes come from Arabian's native northern France. Do not miss the blissfully simple gray-shrimp croquettes, the moules frites, the flash-fried whitebait, the fresh day-boat cod, or especially Arabian's creamy, slightly piquant waterzooi stew with hunks of whitefish and salmon. The desserts are an updated tour de force of centuries past: puffs of freshly whipped meringue that make the île flottante float, the kind of ethereal chocolate mousse that no one makes anymore, and a rustic northern French tarte au sucre flavored with yeasty Belgian beer. People pack in for this eating experience and the astonishingly low prices—especially for the $36 lunch prix fixe (à la carte is about $73 with wine). Reserve—at minimum—a week in advance.

Open Tuesdays through Saturdays noon to 2:30 pm and 7:30 to 11:30 pm.

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