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Le Xaintrailles
With its distinctive red awning and chi-chi al fresco seating on boulevard Du Maréchal Leclerc in Bordeaux, it's hard to miss this classic French brasserie. Famous for its traditional cuisine, Le Xaintrailles is always busy with a vibrant and animated local crowd who come to enjoy the delicious food and convivial atmosphere. Popular for parties, banquets and business seminars, Le Xaintrailles has a nostalgic menu prepared using seasonal produce. Known for their fresh, local seafood - signature dishes at Le Xaintraille include the fish à la plancha; the house foie gras; and the grilled lobster. Taking advantage of its location – Le Xaintrailles also has a great Bordeaux-led wine list and is an ideal place for sampling top regional cuisine.
Address: 114 Boulevard Maréchal Leclerc
Price range: £24 / €34 and und
Cuisines: French


Les Sens Ciel
Opened in November 2007, this bold new venture has been a stylish addition to the Bordeaux restaurant scene. Located on rue du Palais Gallien, Les Sens Ciel – meaning 'the sky' – is a heavenly spot to sample local cuisine from Bordeaux and every region of France. The dining room has a discreet rustic-yet-luxe provincial ambience, and attracts fashionable locals along with elegant and well-heeled travellers. Les Sens Ciel's menu changes daily, and the freshest seasonal produce from the Archachon basin is used to create a variety of dishes that will please even the greediest gourmands. It goes without saying that Les Sens Ciel also has a fabulous French-led wine list.
Address: 59 Rue du Palais Gallien
Price range: £25 - £34 / €35
Cuisines: Other


Le Pavillon des Boulevards
Located on the rue Croix-de-Seguey in Bordeaux, this intimate and romantic restaurant is a top dining destination for discerning foodies. Run by the husband and wife team of Denis and Nelly Franc, the cream-coloured dining rooms at Le Pavillion des Boulevards have an elegant ambience and are decorated with quirky paintings of kitchen utensils. The restaurant boasts both a garden and a sunny terrace, and is renowned for its hearty French fare. We love the caviar served in chesnut-flavoured cream; the grilled crayfish with blood sausage and cider jus; and the fillets of turbot served with Parmesan risotto. The restaurant's sommelier is extremely knowledgeable, and Le Pavillion des Boulevards hosts regular wine tasting events.
Address: 120 Rue Croix de Seguey
Price range: £45 - £54 / €65
Cuisines: French


Le Chapon Fin
Le Chapon Fin restaurant in the heart of Bordeaux bears its historic legacy with grace and style. Founded in 1825 and among the very first to be starred by Michelin in 1933, Le Chapon Fin was a three-star Belle Epoque temple of gastronomy that counted Sarah Bernhardt, Sacha Guitry and Toulouse-Lautrec among its renowned clientele. Reborn in 1987, it is now an exciting centre of culinary creativity under the direction of Nicholas Frion, who produces a Southwestern-inspired, seasonally-changing menu that features dishes like warm panfried foie gras on garlic-scented crumble with onion and grenadine compote, lightly roasted John Dory with chilled lentil cake and warm truffle cream, ready-to-eat pigeon Albufera style. The Belle Epoque dining room with its rockery wall – a national monument – attracts gourmets and romantic duos who also enjoy the exemplary wines and service.
Address: 5 Rue Montesquieu
Price range: £35 - £44 / €50
Cuisines: French


Auberge'Inn
Auberge’Inn restaurant a short distance from the centre of Bordeaux is one of this city’s most intriguing restaurants. The contemporary décor in tones of aubergine and burnt orange with exposed stone walls, the charming terrace and serene ambience alone could lure the curious. But it is Julien Cruege’s truly innovative cuisine in a seasonally-changing menu that draws diners back again and again. Dishes have been known to include asparagus and peppered tomato tartare with prawns and peanut ice cream, veal piccata with balsamic carrots and reblochon gnocchi, and the playful ‘Best of MacAron’ dessert: chocolate and hazelnut hamburger, raw banana fries and Coke granita. Brilliance on a plate.
Address: 245 Rue Turenne
Price range: £35 - £44 / €50
Cuisines: Other


La Cave à Jule's
La Cave a Jules restaurant in Bordeaux’s student quarter is a pretty, intimate restaurant that honours the culinary traditions of southwest France. The pastel-coloured dining room has classic décor with traditional bistro chairs, fresh flowers, and pink table linens. The small terrace beckons in warm weather, too, and all is relaxed and romantic. Chef Didier Moreau offers both regional specialities like foie gras, oysters, and confit of goose as well as more adventurous dishes like kangaroo steak or tournedos of ostrich with warm oysters. The menus are excellent value and the service and wines are just as they ought to be.
Address: 56 Rue du Mirail
Price range: £24 / €34 and und
Cuisines: French


Le Quaizaco
Le Quaizaco restaurant on Bordeaux’s Chartrons quays facing the river has been a celebrated culinary name in town for some years and its lustre has not diminished one iota. Executive chef Denis Franc treads a sure path between innovation and tradition in a well-judged carte that seems to please everyone based on classic French cuisine de terroir of the southwest. Behind the 18th century façade you’ll find trendy modern styling. The attractive dining rooms feature exposed-stone walls and a brick ceiling that was created by Gustave Eiffel plus all the comforts of white-linen table settings and lingerable seating. A series of art and photographic exhibitions grace the walls and evenings of electro-jazz appear from time to time. Pretty terrace, too.
Address: 80 Quai des Chartrons
Price range: £25 - £34 / €35
Cuisines: French


Le Grill du Bouchon
Le Grill du Bouchon restaurant in Bordeaux is all about excellent steak perfectly cooked on open flames and accompanied by exemplary wines. Any questions? The entrecote, filet, faux-filet and other cuts in question come from the best quality limousin and charolais, though a few other choices may tempt you, especially the lamb. You can observe its journey onto the flames as the grill is right there at the end of the dining room. And, as you’re in Bordeaux, you should accompany your steak, frites and salad with a bottle from the carefully-chosen mainly local wine list. This new restaurant is decorated in traditional style – no cold minimalism here. It attracts an enthusiastic crowd of carnivores who give it a great buzz.
Address: 12 Rue des Piliers de Tutelle
Price range: £25 - £34 / €35
Cuisines: French


PopArt
Pop Art restaurant in Bordeaux has a fizzy, light-hearted ambience that recalls the mad excitement of the pop art era. This tiny establishment features brightly coloured tableware, appropriate artworks, wood floor, sleek black seating, neobaroque candelabra, the bubbling music of the 80’s humming through the air, and a relaxed, trendy atmosphere where everyone feels welcome. The menu features fine ingredients in creative dishes like duck breast with mango or steak fillet with pain d’epice. The wine list favours the local – brilliant – stuff, and the stone cellar downstairs is exactly the place to start and finish your meal.
Address: 8 Rue André Dumercq
Price range: £24 / €34 and und
Cuisines: Other


La Boulangerie
La Boulangerie restaurant in Bordeaux an easy stroll from the Garonne and the Quai des Chatrons has an aromatic past as a bakery from the 1850’s til the 20th century. The rustic interior has been somewhat restored, but retains a beguiling antiquity that wins it hordes of fans. The wood-fired oven is there at the back of the dining room, searing entrecotes for delighted patrons. The quarry-tile floors, undressed wood tables and seating, exposed stone and brick walls and antique dresser all add to the relaxed, romantic ambience. The menu here features traditional specialties of the Southwest, like breast of duck with fresh liver or stuffed pigeon and quail. Excellent choice of wines and equally excellent service.
Address: 48 Rue Barreyre
Price range: £24 / €34 and und
Cuisines: French


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