The lively local bars and restaurants of this vital trade centre are the best spots to enjoy regional culinary specialities, says chef Daniel Boulud, who picks his top restaurants and wine bars...
Top Lyon restaurants and wine bars
Georges Dos Santos, Lyon’s most famous wine personality, runs this wine shop that showcases all French wine regions and international bottles in various formats and vintages, as well as a beautiful collection of Ports. 18 Rue du Boeuf, 69005 www.anticwine.e-monsite.com
One of the most famous of Lyon’s bouchons. Traditional dishes like quenelle des brochet and cervelle des canuts pair well with house wine, served in a heavy-bottomed glass bottle called a pot de vin. Other favourite bouchons are Daniel et Denise and Café Comptoir Abel. www.brasseriegeorges.com/home.aspx
Run by Mathieu Rostaing-Tayard – who used to work with Pierre Gagnaire, and is part of the next young generation of chefs – this small restaurant serves simple dishes on a limited, ever-changing, seasonal menu. It’s in the spirit of a bouchon, with incomparable value. www.cafe-sillon.com
A trip to Lyon must include a visit to Les Halles – I cannot go to a city without visiting its markets. Here you capture a sense of the season, and you can still see the local chefs picking up their ingredients and products as I did as an apprentice 40 years ago when I would buy loup de mer from Poissonnerie Pupier to bring back to Nandron, or visit La Mère Richard for St-Marcellin cheese. www.halles-de-lyonpaulbocuse.com
Paul Bocuse is the patriarch of chefs in Lyon. If feeling indulgent, or nostalgic, visit L’Auberge – the food is classic and almost a time capsule, yet still so relevant to see where the food being served today originated. One of the region’s best wine lists. www.bocuse.fr/auberge-bocuse.aspx
A wine shop with an excellent programme of tastings and a menu by Sébastien Milleret to match fine wines from producers such as Marcel Lapierre, Domaine Gramenon and Hervé Villemade.
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Home to what is certainly the best wine cellar in Lyon, the restaurant of chef Pierre Orsi is famous for its classic French cuisine and is one of Lyon’s temples of gastronomy. Orsi proudly wears the tricolour chef collar, signifying him as one of a small group of Meilleur Ouvrier de France. www.pierreorsi.com/uk
Bellecour The place to stay. Elegant, modern and refined, and in the centre of town on Presqu’île. www.sofitel.com
Founded in 1921 by one of Lyon’s ‘mothers’, who ran some of the city’s best kitchens and are the real heroes of its gastronomic reputation. Today the two Michelin-starred restaurant is run by Mathieu Viannay, another MOF (see no7). The more casual Brazier Wine Bar specialises in Burgundy and Rhône wines. www.lamerebrazier.fr
Superb selection of wine, specialising in an excellent selection of natural wines, alongside very good platters of charcuterie and cheese. There’s only bar seating at this shop-cumwine bar, but it’s in the heart of town. www.levindesvivants.fr
Daniel Boulud is a chef who owns restaurants across the US and Canada, plus Lyon, London and Singapore. Editing for Decanter.com by Ellie Douglas.