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Chez Françoise restaurant celebrates the 75th birthday of this Parisian gastronomic institution, back soon in the Invalides

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This May 2024, the illustrious Chez Françoise restaurant, located under the wide Esplanade des Invalides in Paris, is celebrating its 75th anniversary, while initiating at this occasion a temporary move to the other location of the 10 rue Amélie, still in the Left Bank of Paris, for some years.  
Indeed, this legendary place, which has become a popular canteen for the political class, but not only, since the media, civic associations, as well as families and friends, would continue to shine despite this temporary change. By AP

For your information, since 1949, this Chez Françoise institution has distinguished itself as much more than a simple restaurant. In the kitchen, you may entrust the chef Philippe Léglise and his loyal team to perpetuate the initial warm and welcoming spirit of the founder, Turenne Rousseau (photo credits: Chez Françoise).  
Let’s have a look about the history of this Parisian institution, created by Turenne Rousseau, which finds its origins in the love of French cuisine. Thus, Turenne Rousseau, already a renowned restaurateur, was entrusted in 1949 by the Air France airline company, with the management of a restaurant under their Invalides terminal. Named Chez Françoise in homage to a beloved lady, the restaurant was initially intended to serve air travelers, whose departures were used to be announced in situ


On top of that, its exceptional location near the National Assembly quickly made it a natural meeting point for countless political figures and elegant Parisian society. That’s why, you could seat in the Prime MinistersLounge, where each French Prime Minister is represented by a press caricature, symbolizes the close bond of the restaurant with the political class.  
Nowadays, its rich heritage gets pursued under the current management of Pascal Mousset and Chef Philippe Léglise in the kitchen. Thanks to a deeply involved team, the Chez Françoise restaurant has become a crossroads of ideas, a must for current debates and a must for the elected officials of the French Republic.
By the way, Chez Françoise is rich in anecdotes, marked by friendships and also a true shared esteem, between Turenne Rousseau, the engineer Jean Albert Grégoire, and the entrepreneur Léon Langlois. The name of the restaurant pays homage to Françoise Langlois, wife of Léon, who was a close friend of Rousseau.  
So to say, be ready to admire some picturesque anecdotes that marked the history of this restaurant, such as that of the cake served at Général de Gaulle, including butter of a lower quality than expected, or the inspirations of Louis de Funès for his film Le Grand Restaurant, where Turenne Rousseau‘s demanding behavior towards his employees seems to be reflected in the character of Louis De Funès. As far as we know, this true place of conviviality and debates celebrates 75 years of exchange and conviviality, serving more than 400 people daily. 
This restaurant has hosted numerous political debate clubs and personalities from all walks of life, encouraging meetings and discussions in a warm atmosphere.  
In addition to its role in facilitating democratic debate, Chez Françoise highlights a certain French lifestyle, notably through menus that promote many terroirs of France. Filled with its varied spaces, so to say a main room, a glass roof, an art gallery, but also a small Prime Ministers’ Lounge and a tiny terrace, stuck behind the Invalides parking. Therefore, this establishment has attracted generations of customers, among them of course many travelers, attracted by its unique atmosphere, nearby the Air France‘s former headquarters. Despite this acclaimed legend, in 2019, this institution faced several related uncertainties, emanating to the upcoming renovation project of this Aérog’art
Therefore, hundreds of personalities and clients were mobilized to ensure the return of Chez Françoise to its historic location after the end of this renovation phase. Embodied in a new project, conveying a temporary move, which takes place as part of the renovation of this emblematic so-called Aérog’art edifice, from where many tourists stopped by. This project, directed by architect Dominique Perrault and managed by Emerige and Nexity, was selected by the City of Paris
This new configuration would aim to redevelop the plot of the Esplanade des Invalides, including the creation of a Giacometti Museum. For instance, Chez Françoise would be finally reborn in 2029 in a large underground hall under the Avenue du Maréchal Gallieni, occupying a newly rethought and wide 650 m² space that can accommodate up to 300 people, with a terrace in a patio
In the meantime, the restaurant would continue to welcome its regulars at 10 rue Amélie in Paris, formerly known as Le Petit Niçois. There, you would be pleased to taste again its numerous delights, varying according to the season, such as roasted eggplant millefeuille, tomato gaspacho, unless you prefer grilled sea bream supreme, lobster ravioles, or even homemade gnocchi and tomatoes gratin, for vegans. This ensemble being potentially accompanied by a selection of various wines, from all over the French terroir
This continuity results from a mobilization that testifies to the deep attachment of Parisians and random regulars to this emblematic place of French gastronomy. With a new stage in its history, Chez Françoise would then be able to embody tradition and innovation, promising to be reborn even more  vibrant and welcoming back in its original location in 2029, while perpetuating its unique heritage in the 7th arrondissement of Paris.


Chez Françoise, 10 Rue Amélie, 75007 Paris (France) / Phone : 00 33 (0)1 47 05 49 03. More details on their official website.


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