Sitting directly across from the stock exchange, Le Vaudeville is one of the restaurants that has served office workers in the financial district of Paris for decades. I have been coming here since 1987 and I am happy to say that it remains one of my favorite places in eat in a city known for great restaurants.

I met my friend Arantxa for lunch here on a gray and rainy day. The classic bistro decor and central location make this place an easy choice for any meal Monday through Saturday from 7am to 11pm.

We ordered a half bottle of Sancerre (26 Euros or about USD$35) with our meal and sipped it leisurely throughout our meal. Arantxa chose the poireaux au vinaigrette (leeks in a vinaigrette) and enjoyed the presentation as well as the flavor of this classic appetizer.

I chose the menu of 25 Euros (about USD$35) which included an appetizer and an entree with several choices for each, and since I can not get enough oysters in France, I ordered the moyens again (see yesterday’s post).

For her entree, Arantxa chose the sole (29 Euros or about USD$40), served with a delicate puree of potatoes which she declared perfectly done.

For my menu entree I chose the rumsteak with eschallotes (flank steak with shallots) served with sauteed potatoes. The meat was cooked exactly as I ordered it (bleu), rare and cold in the middle. I loved the robust caramelized shallots which complimented the tender steak perfectly; this was upscale steak frites (the classic French steak and fries dish served in nearly every bistro).

Rainy gray weather is always easier to handle when fortified with classic French food and an old friend.