Paris: Restaurant – Le Ralph’s. In the former stables of the seventeenth century hotel particulier that houses the Ralph Lauren flagship store on the Boulevard Saint Germain is Le Ralph's restaurant. It is fabulous and it’s all the rage, so book a table at least a week in advance, otherwise you might be disappointed. The dinning experience and the place itself is worth a visit; it evokes the world of elegance of men’s clubs, of horses and dogs, the Hamptons and luxury.
Above: a detail of the bar area.
Le Ralph’s. A small intimate table by the window of the bar area. In the courtyard the outdoor tables must be wonderful in the spring and summertime for dinning al fresco.
Note: The crisp tablecloths the high back leather chairs and the pretty red roses scattered all over the restaurant.
Le Ralph’s. The "old school" American menu offers the freshest and best ingredients, as you can see from this Caesar salad. Also on the menu New England clam chowder, Maine lobster, Maryland crab cakes, shrimp cocktail, fried chicken, meat loaf, steaks, turkey, veggie and tuna burgers, and of course the all American cheeseburger.
Le Ralph’s. One of the elegant table settings. I loved the mix of leopard and tartan cushions on the banquettes.
Le Ralph’s. Chef Stephane D’Aboville from Le Bristol spent a week in New York learning from Danny Meyers of Union Square Hospitality Group, how to cook a hamburger and other American specialties. The burgers and steaks are made with Angus beef from the cattle on Ralph Lauren’s ranch in Colorado.
Note: The avocado slices, an unusual accompaniment to the classic hamburger, as is the way of serving, the not very good and a bit soggy French fries in a silver-plated mint julep glass.
Le Ralph’s. Stripes and stripes. The elegant and handsome young waiters wear crisp striped blue and white cotton shirts, pinstriped trousers and long white cotton aprons and were trained in New York.
Le Ralph’s. The desserts are served on these pretty blue and white flower plates. The cheesecake was good and very appealing to the eye.
Le Ralph’s. Espresso is served not with petit fours but with the surprise of yummy and irresistible caramel popcorn in a silver bowl.
Le Ralph’s. The main dinning room is centered around a gigantic fireplace. On collecting the Legion d’Honneur medal from president Sarkozy, Ralph Lauren said, “I’m in love with Paris — everywhere you look my heart is high, and when I go into the store it feels so good. I was a little intimidated by Paris. I didn’t speak the language. But now I have three stores, it feels like I’m living here — I am much more at ease and comfortable.”