Finding the Best Tripe in Paris
Great Restaurants for Offal in the French Capital
Love it or hate it, pigs' feet is an audacious dish. Like a majority of offal dishes, it usually elicits a strong reaction from everyone, including British tourists, who don’t necessarily hold the dish in the best regard.
Likewise, to enjoy tripe is a secret pleasure—a pleasure chiefly from the Mediterranean, which is highlighted by Alexandre Dumas: “Seven cities have fought among each other to have the honor of being the place of Homer’s birth. France and Italy have disputed that of having discovered the preparation of beef tripe.”
20 bis, rue Jean-Giradoux, 75116 Paris
Tel: 01 47 20 58 14
In Africa, tripe is sautéed slowly and heavily spiced, but the meat remains firm and almost crunchy, as it can be found at the brand new and elegant African Lounge in Paris’ 16th arrondissement. Here, two African chefs and a young French chef work together to familiarize us with the flavors of Cameroon and Senegal in West Africa.
28, rue des Fossés-Saint-Bernard, 75005 Paris
Tel: 01 43 29 87 65
Le Petit Mâchon
A dish hailing from Lyon, breaded tripe consists of the thinnest strips of the paunch, one of the four compartments in bovine stomachs. The cuts are marinated in white wine, fried and served with vinaigrette of boiled eggs, capers, pickles and herbs. This figures on the menus of both Moissonier in Paris’ 5th arrondissement, and Le Petit Mâchon in the 15th.
123, rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris
Tel: 01 45 54 08 62
The new chef, Laurent Josépiak, from Benoît in Paris’ 4th arrondissement, is a perfectionist. The pieds et paquets marseillais, on Le Quincy’s menu all year, are as good as those of Reine Sammut à la Fernière in Northern Provence. The trotters are
blanched and flambéed, while the tripe is garnished with a hash of ribs, garlic and parsley; and the sauce made more flavorful with a hint of cayenne pepper.
28, avenue Ledru-Rollin, 75012 Paris
Tel: 01 46 28 46 76
Specializing in a genre of cuisine that existed before the advent of nouvelle cuisine, and thought to have virtually disappeared off the culinary map, Le Quincy, adorned with trinkets and checkered tablecloths, triumphs in its preparation of tête de veau, or calf’s head, and pieds et paquets marseillais or trotters and sheep’s tripe from Marseille. The owner, a very talkative native of Franche-Comté dressed in butcher’s garb, can go on about the merits of totally cooked tête de veau—much more flavorful—as compared to a rolled preparation of the same.
La Bastide Odéon
7, rue Corneille, 75006 Paris
Tel: 01 43 26 03 65
This restaurant, with Gilles Ajuelos at the helm, maintains the Marseillaise tradition of serving sheep tripe, with the dish regularly featured on its menu.
Le Bistrot d’à côté
10, Gustave-Flaubert, 75017 Paris
Tel: 01 42 67 05 81
This restaurant, run by Michel Rostang, also follows the Marseillaise tradition of including sheep tripe on its menu.
10, rue Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre, 75005 Paris
Tel: 01 46 33 98 80
Nadège de Varigny’s Ribouldingue is currently the best place to delight in tripe: sheep’s tongue in tartar sauce, a salad of cow’s udder, calf sweetbread, kidney and tripe cooked in white wine and tête de veau fried in a vinaigrette of boiled eggs, pickles, capers and herbs. All for an extremely reasonable price–a meal costs around 27 euro.