Pierre Gagnaire, Paris

A short walk from the Arc de Triomphe and tucked behind the Champs-Elysees at 6 Rue Balzac lies Paris’ finest eatery – the three Michelin-Starred Pierre Gagnaire restaurant. Effectively a celebration of the man himself and his inventiveness, Gagnaire has crafted a mouth-watering menu of the finest French cuisine, each dish given a novel twist in fusion cuisine.

Gagnaire’s modern take on classic dishes is legendary and is the reason behind his award-heavy career. His approach is perhaps best summed up by his motto: ‘tourne vers demain mais soucieux d’hier’ which translates to ‘facing tomorrow but respectful of yesterday’ and his clashing tastes combine to salivating effect.

His current menu features rich delights including duck foie gras flavoured with coffee and roasted plum, tuna tartar with salted anchovies, and roast wild grouse cooked in butter, black pepper and thyme.

Décor at Pierre Gagnaire is as contemporary as the dishes being served. Tables are chic and sleek with a simple white cloth covering, while the walls are practically alive with paper notes and artwork. The mood of the restaurant is romantic and intimate with low lighting, a centrally positioned intricate clockwork inspired hanging lamp, and lots of wood detail. Windows into the kitchens show the staff hard at work – with the possibility that Gagnaire himself could be in position giving the orders.

The height of sophisticated French dining, Pierre Gagnaire enforces a strict dress code to ensure the atmosphere is as extravagant as the dishes being served. As one of Paris’ worst kept secrets, the tables are almost never empty meaning booking ahead is essential.