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In Paris, there are memorable dining experiences around every corner -- from the melt-in-your-mouth croissants at a sunny sidewalk cafe to the spectacular culinary creations at the city's many Michelin-starred hot spots. If you're looking to try one of the latter, be sure to make your reservation well in advance, and consider a lunchtime visit to enjoy similar gourmet cuisine at more affordable prices.

coffee paris france cafeA few tips for dining in Paris: The city's restaurants, cafes and bars are now non-smoking, at least indoors. As a result, outdoor patios are now smokier than ever. When looking at your bill, keep in mind that the tip is often included; however, it's customary to leave a few extra euros if the service was particularly good. Keep an eye out for the phrase "service non compris," which means that the tip has not been included; in this case, leave about 15 percent. Finally, never -- we repeat, never -- order a doggie bag for your leftovers.

Les Bouquinistes (53 Quai des Grands Augustins), Guy Savoy's trendy Left Bank bistro, is located near Notre-Dame and offers elegant French cuisine such as grilled royal sea bream with zucchini and antiboise sauce, and pan-seared foie gras with salty crumbly shortbread and cherries.

The combination of its Eiffel Tower location and spectacular food makes Le Jules Verne one of the most popular (and expensive) restaurants in Paris. Make your reservations months in advance -- though it's a bit easier to land a table at lunchtime.

Pierre Herme is the city's premier pastry chef and his creations can be found in three locations around the city. (4 Rue Cambon, 185 Rue de Vaugirard and 39 Avenue de l'Opera) We love the glorious macaroon confections in pistachio, coffee, rose, passionfruit-chocolate, lemon-hazelnut and the like.

The stylish Le Martel (3 rue Martel) serves up a delicious mix of French and Moroccan cuisine to a trendy clientele in the 10th arrondissement.

You can have ... er, buy your foie gras and eat it too at Granterroirs (30 rue de Miromesnil). Add truffles and other similar goodies for a memorable light lunch.

Passionate or casual tea drinkers should head straight for Mariage Freres, which sells more than 500 types of tea and has been in business since the 1800's.

It's worth heading a little bit out of town to dine at L'Atelier du Parc (35 Boulevard Lefebvre), where the gourmet French fare is moderately priced. The restaurant is easily accessible by Metro.

At Angelina, (226 Rue de Rivoli, at the Louvre and six other locations in the city) chocolate bars are melted down to thick syrup in the name of hot chocolate. And don't miss the amazing Mont Blanc gateau.

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