Toulouse & Around - FRANCE

Toulouse is a great city to eat in, especially if you like duck, cassoulet, and wine, but we won't only recommend French restaurants as you'll see below.

The South-West region of France is also well-known for its gastronomy.

We lived in Toulouse from end of 2009 to March 2011, so all these recommendations are dated from this time.

Empanadas Argentinas

This is a small and lovely empanadas place in Toulouse. It is located 3 rue des Gestes, a 5 minutes walk southwest of the Capitole (where Toulouse's City Hall is) following rue Gambetta. They serve good-sized, delicious empanadas.

We often ate here while we were living in Toulouse, but you can also take away empenadas. The restaurant is really small, so if you plan on going you might want to book a table or be prepared to wait for a bit, especially on weekends.

The menu is varied and offers carnivore and vegetarian options. They offer fillings such as tuna, chicken-onion, spinach, three cheese, ham-cheese, corn, and organic meat empanadas.

The prices are decent and the staff is friendly, which is always nice in France.

Frog & Rosbif

This pub is quite nice, even though we like the charm of an Irish pub better.
They brew their own beer, and for the food ... interesting concept ... they use the Indian restaurant and the French restaurant across the street to cater their customers.

As far as the beer is concerned, the brew is just about decent. As an avid beer lover who lived in the Pacific Northwest of the United States, Frog's brews just don't quench my thirst for a good micro-brewed pint. But they do offer a very refreshing change from the usual beer selections common in French bars and cafes.  

Try the Ginger Blonde, that was the only one that made an impression. 

It is located 14 rue de l'Industrie, a 10 minutes walk east of Place Wilson (downtown).


It is quite a charming Italian restaurant, which honestly doesn't look like anything much from the outside, but it is bigger on the inside ... (this is is for you Doctor Who fans) (2 levels restaurant).

The pizzas are delicious, as well as the pastas.

The pizzas are Italian style pizzas with thin crust.

The staff is friendly, and the service is extremely quick even on a very crowded weekend. The pizza chefs take centre stage as you enter the restaurant, and they are always ready with a friendly smile and "Bonjour" even while they runaround sliding a seemingly endless parade of pizzas into and out of the giant brick oven.

It is located 11 rue Castellane, a 10 minutes walk east of Place Wilson (downtown).

The restaurant is often full, but the downside is they don't take any reservation, which is a pity.

La Mare aux Canards

It is located 14 rue des Gestes, in the same street than Empanadas Argentinas ... I completely concede it is not the same food than Argentinian empanadas, because this restaurant will serve you typical local Toulousaine cuisine. So if you like duck ... go for it.

The prices are decent: they offer a 20, 25, 28 euros menus, or à la carte.
The portions are generous.
The menu is delicious from any salad to the foie gras as well as the duck confit, and even the beef (entrecôte and onglet). And don't forget to try a dessert ... after all. you are in France.

Be careful, at the time they were often fully booked, so make a reservation.

The staff is friendly and has a excellent knowledge of the menu.

La Cave Au Cassoulet

We would recommend the cassoulet, which is a southwestern French speciality.

The restaurant is located in the cellar, quite charming way to eat.

It is located 54 rue Peyrolières, a 5 minutes walk southwest of the Capitole (where Toulouse's City Hall is) following rue Gambetta (rue Gambetta becomes rue Peyrolières. As in today, their website is not really working, you just get home page and the map, but no menu.

Maison Du Curry

The restaurant is quite off-centered (located avenue de l'URSS), and we only went there once just before we left Toulouse. They just have been opened for less than a week and the food was good.
The staff was really friendly. As mentioned, at the time, and it was the first few weeks they were open, they weren't really organized and we waited quite a bit to have our orders served.

They also have a booth at the Victor Hugo Market (located downtown), that's how we discovered them. We often bought some excellent food to take away.

De Danu

It is a typical Irish pub where we used to go quite often for drinks and food. The only downside, and the reason we started to go less often, is it became more like a fancy restaurant, or I guess you can call it a gastro-pub, than a pub anymore ... you even have to book a table ... which is quite ridiculous if you ask me.

The food is good but pricey, especially for a pub. 

The staff is friendly ... like any Irish pub.

It is quite off-centered, so if you're walking, it's a good 25 minutes walk from downtown.

Monsieur Georges

If you want good meat, excellent sauces, and wait staff who can speak english (but don't rate high on the friendly scale), Monsieur Georges in Place Saint-Georges (next to Place Wilson) is a great bet.

However, expect to pay a decent sum; an entrecôte (steak) is 24 Euros. Dinner for two, including appetizer, dessert, and a bottle of wine, will generally run over 80 Euros. 

But, the meat is really good and the staff always understood just how I like my meat, which is a big plus for me. They are not friendly or exceedingly warm, so don't expect that kind of service.

Les 3 Dynasties

It is located in Blagnac where the airport is, so not really next to any tourist attraction, but the food is excellent and constant, so no surprise there. Les 3 Dynasties is an excellent Chinese restaurant which has been opened for a very long time (at least ten years, because I lived in Toulouse in 2000 and 2001 and I remembered eating there quite often).

Xavier Fromager Affineur

A great selection of cheese.

The prices are not low, so if you can find the cheese you like in a supermarket or at a market, buy them there. Go to Xavier if you want a specific cheese, such as their truffle brie (the time to buy  truffles is after October-November).

Xavier Fromager Affineur is located downtown, across the street from the Victor Hugo Market.

We wouldn't recommend:

The chain called L'Entrecôte (and not only in Toulouse), from which we still don't understand why there is a waiting line. The menu is always the same, the meat is less than decent, and at the end you  just get a beef steak and French fries dish ... very sad ... and a less than medium quality.

Any other Indian restaurant (other than Maison du Curry and New Delhi, the one serving Frog and Rosbif) because the food is not Indian. There is no flavour, no spice, and every dish tastes practically the same.

Reviewed by Charline Leblond & Shyamal Addanki

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