The city of Lyon, in France, is reputed to be the world's gastronomic capital. As such, I strongly recommend a visit to this wonderful city, which has enough restaurants to satisfy even the most copious food buffs. But while Lyon is especially known for the hearty food if its 'bouchons', these typical restaurants provide exquisite food, but are not to everyone's liking, or at least not every day. For this reason, I'd like to share my personal top 5 non-bouchons restaurants. The 6th candidate is not a restaurant, but a very special bakery I encourage you all to visit! Future customers must note that the prices indicated below do not include drinks...
5. Grain de Sel, 66 Rue de Bonnel, 69003 Lyon 04 78 62 77 50 (google maps)
Another excellent crêperie with a special twist: instead of serving the more popular wheat-flour crêpes, this restaurant keeps the Breton tradition alive by serving buckwheat flour crêpes typical of northern regions of France. Along with a good bowl of apple or pear cider, and small prices, this is restaurant high on my list.
4. Brasserie Georges, 30 Cours de Verdun Perrache 69002 Lyon 04 72 56 54 54 (google maps)
A brewery serving excellent drinks and food since 1836, this restaurant is still very successful today. A large building, with an imposing, almost Viennese-style architecture, food buffs will indubitably fall in love with this place. And its also very affordable, with generous menus for as little as 15€! Bon appétit!
3. L'écho des Galets (creperie), 2 Rue David Girin, 69002 Lyon 04 78 42 77 19 (google maps)
A very discrete restaurant in downtown Lyon which offers some of the most delicious crêpes and omelets around. Good atmosphere and very affordable. Highly recommended!
2. Ninkasi, 254 Rue Marcel Mérieux 69007 Lyon 04 72 76 89 00 (google maps)
The 'in' place for younger people. Also a brewery, this interesting restaurant/enterprise proposes live concerts or entertainment to accompany hearty meals and unique 'Ninkasi' beers. The customer can compose his own hamburgers, and even choose how much meat (in kilos) to have. Very affordable, a good meal rarely costing beyond 15€.
1. Le Petit Carron, 48 Avenue Félix Faure 69003 Lyon 04 78 60 00 57 (google maps)
More upper-class this one, be prepared to spend at least 25€ on a meal. But the price is well worth it, the food here, inspired by trendy nouvelle cuisine, and very stylish setting is absolutely divine! If some of the more expensive dishes are out of reach, there is always the 16€ menu (main dish + desert or entré).
Honourable mention: Pascal Molines Sarl, 46 Avenue Félix Faure, 69003 Lyon 04 78 95 31 48 (google maps)
Not a restaurant as such, but an excellent baker, who not only won the 1999 world cup in pastry-making, but was also voted Pastry Chef (meilleur ouvrier patisserie) in 2000. And if that wasn't enough, he has taught at the famous Paul Bocuse Institute from 2001 to 2003. But this impressive curriculum wouldn't mean much if it weren't for his exquisitely delicious, stylish and affordable pastries. A must for anyone in Lyon!
This concludes my top 5+1 restaurants in Lyon. Of course, there are many more out there, and I'm sure there are restaurants that are even more delicious that these. If the enthusiastic traveller does find such places, I encourage him to share it on factoidz!