Yet, it was not until 1952 that an apprenticeship federation was established in Tours in the Centre region, and then expanded to other cities including Paris. And today now, you can discover a museum in Paris dedicated to the history of apprenticeships with items on display such as tools of the trade from a wide range of different crafts like masonry, plumbing, pastry making etc.
This museum called the Musee du Compagnonnage is located in the Saint Germain des Pres area, and it is at the same location as a library and the Aux Charpentiers restaurant and bistro.
In fact, the Aux Charpentiers bistro in Paris has been established since around the 1860s and it was at the start of the 1900s that it moved to the Rue Mabillon in order to teach young students their art of fine cuisine.
Later on the bistro was then purchased by Pierre Bardeche in 1976, who comes from a catering family originally from the Limousin region in France, and he himself is a chef and also held a vice presidents seat of the Academie Nationale de Cuisine for over 20 years.
About the Aux Charpentiers Restaurant in Paris
Entering the Aux Charpentiers restaurant is like entering a typical Parisien bistro come museum in Paris, as there are many items along with a décor that feels like you have stepped back in time.
Yet this restaurant in Paris has a warm and friendly feel with good quality home made French cuisine, friendly staff and Pierre and his wife that are more than happy to please to make your lunch or dinner as enjoyable as possible.
And in fact, over the years it has seen many celebrities and famous people such as the French President Jacques Chirac and the American President Ronald Regan, so once you have had an enjoyable evening and dinner, why not ask the friendly staff if you could see the book where some of these people have written comments.
French Cuisine at the Aux Charpentiers Bistro in Paris
You will find home cooked French cuisine served at this restaurant in Paris, with a heavy influence on traditional dishes from the Limousin region, which is where the owner and chef, Pierre Bardeche, originally came from.
Pierre has a passion for cooking, but is also passionate about obtaining quality produce, and with the Rungis food market, which is actually the largest food market in the world, located on the outskirts of Paris, it is no wonder that Pierre Bardeche can regularly be seen there.
Obviously the menu changes according to the seasons depending upon what fresh produce is available, for instance when it is the gaming season, or the types of vegetables utilised, plus there is always a dish of the day mentioned on the board.
Yet some of the traditional Limousin delights you may be able to experience include country style stuffed cabbage, lentils and bacon, black sausage from the Correze or Correze style calf’s head served with truffle juice vinaigrette, not forgetting a range of beef dishes such as braised, tartare, ribs, steaks etc.
Other dishes could be home made Foie Gras with toasted brioche or marinated salmon with honey and olive oil for starters, followed by veal stew in a white sauce and rice or roasted black blood sausage with apples for a main course. And the tempting desserts could be a walnut sponge cake with coffee sauce and ice cream or a Rum Baba with Chantilly cream.
The a la carte menu prices range from €12 upwards for a starter and from €20 upwards for a main course as of 2013, however there is a lunch time formula of a starter and main course with a glass of wine for €20. A fixed price dinner menu as a three course is available for €28.50, but the is also a Limousin Discovery Menu available for €36 as of 2013.
Access to Aux Charpentiers Bistro Restaurant in Paris
You may be pleased to know that the Aux Charpentiers restaurant is open seven days a week for both lunch and dinner, plus the well stocked bar with its good wine cellar is also open seven days a week.
There is a terrace that you can enjoy in fine weather, however, this can only accommodate up to twenty people, whereas the restaurant itself can accommodate up to 120 people, but being a popular venue, it is advisable to book a table, even though it is not always essential.
And located in the 6th Arrondissement of Paris at the same location as the Musee du Compagnonnage museum, there are also numerous other tourist attractions in Paris that are situated close by, such as the Eglise Saint-Sulpice church and the Luxembourg Gardens.
You can reach the Aux Charpentiers bistro and museum via the Metro stop of Mabillon on line 10 or the Saint Germain des Pres stop on line 4.
More information on Musee du Compagnonnage
- Musee du Compagnonnage
Address and Contact Details
10 Rue Mabillon
Ile de France
Tel: +33 (0) 1 43 26 30 05
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Aux Charpentiers Bistro in Paris
The well known Aux Charpentiers is a bistro in Paris that has been visited by numerous famous people over the years, and still provides good quality French cuisine, yet is more like a museum restaurant with its history.
A bit of history..
The first true documentation on apprenticeships in France dates back to the 12th century, but much of what was taught over the centuries, was passed down by word of mouth from the teacher to student.
But this is no doubt one of the reasons why there is such a rich amount of fabulous architecture throughout France and numerous impressive monuments in Paris, just like the chateaux, mansion houses, churches and cathedrals.