Where to eat
It’s difficult to choose among all the great restaurants that exist in Bordeaux, so we left this responsibility to food and wine expert Dewey Markham who when asked which places he’d recommend immediately went with, ‘Le Noailles close to Place Tourny: a classical bistro and definitely a place you should take people visiting Bordeaux.’ While you’re there, order a truffle omelette or the crab tartar with lime and immerse yourself in the warm atmosphere of traditional French brasseries. According to Markham, La Tupina should also be at the top of your list if you are a foodie. You will be charmed by ‘its informal ambiance and excellent food.’ The famous author Patricia Wells wrote a weekly column for the International Herald Tribune about her Tour de France of the best French bistros and La Tupina was ranked second on that list. If you’re still doubtful, the plethora of photos of celebrities who stopped by the restaurant during their stay is a good indicator of its popularity.
If you are coming to visit Bordeaux, you probably know that the Arcachon bay is home to some of the finest oysters in the world. If you can’t make it, don’t worry, you can taste excellent seafood at the bistro Chez Jean-Mi, which is located in one of the most iconic parts of the city: the Marché des Capucins. Sit with your friends and order platter of seafood and enjoy the cordial ambiance while mingling with the local population.
Still want more? In that case, you could add Le Chapon Fin to your list, a spot that’s perfect for a special occasion (a proposal maybe?), Le Taquin, and – if you are a meat lover – La Brasserie Bordelaise, El Nacional or the famous l’Entrecôte (some might roll their eyes at this one but the long line in front of the restaurant proves that point).
Le Noailles, 12 Allées Tourny, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 81 94 45
La Tupina, Rue Porte de la Monnaie, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 91 56 37
Chez Jean Mi, Place des Capucins, Bordeaux, France, +33 6 81 20 24 49
Le Chapon Fin, 5, Rue Montesquieu, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 79 10 10
Le Taquin, 1, Quai Sainte-Croix, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 78 97 10
La Brasserie Bordelaise, 50, Rue Saint-Rémi, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 57 87 11 91
El Nacional, 23, Rue Rode, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 79 22 76
L’Entrecôte, 4, Cours du 30 Juillet, Bordeaux, France, +33 56 81 76 10
Where to drink
The list of cool wine bars and places where to meet up for drinks is endless but we believe you can’t go wrong with these. The intimate and cozy atmosphere reigning at Le Point Rouge makes it a perfect French bar. It is the ideal place for afterwork cocktails with your friends or for a cozy and romantic date with your special one. With over 100 different cocktails on the menu served by excellent and friendly staff, you’ll be sure to find a suitable match to your mood.
If you like cocktails, meanwhile, make sure to stop by the Symbiose bar situated alongside the beautiful Quai des Chartrons for a fun get-together with your favorite people. You can fully trust the barmen there, they know their spirits and can mix up unique drinks to your taste.
If you’re feeling more like wine but don’t want to trek out to a vineyard, check out Un Château en Ville. Recently opened, this is the first chateau located inside the city. More than a regular wine bar, it is a buzzing spot where you can discover the excellent millesimals of the Lestrille chateau all in Bordeaux’s historic centre.
Le Point Rouge, 1, Quai de Paludate, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 94 94 40
Symbiose, 4, Quai des Chartrons, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 23 67 15
Un Château en Ville, 25, Rue Saint-James, Bordeaux, France, +33 9 53 04 48 93
Where to dessert
Buying chocolate is always a good idea and in Bordeaux, the best place to go is Hasnaâ Chocolats Grands Crus by Hasnaâ Ferreira. You will be mesmerized by the original flavors that Mrs Ferreira carefully curates in order to hone the craft of chocolate making and tasting. You also can’t leave Bordeaux without tasting some canelés, one of the city’s most emblematic sweets. La Toque Cuivrée is for sure the place to try these pastries filled with rum and vanilla and finished with a thick caramelized crust. Meanwhile, coffee lovers should not miss l’Alchimiste while exploring the city’s culinary marvels.
Hasnaâ Chocolats Grands Crus, 4, Rue de la Vieille Tour, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 56 81 11 40
La Toque Cuivrée, Place Gambetta, Bordeaux, France, +33 5 57 83 61 67
L’Alchimiste, 12, Rue de la Vieille Tour, Bordeaux, France, + 33 9 86 48 37 93