The Bel Canto restaurant and opera venue in Paris
The Bel Canto is a unique place for an evening out in Paris, as you will be able to enjoy a fine dining experience with gourmet a la carte cuisine that is accompanied by incredible opera singers who are also your waiters and waitresses.
Background Behind Bel Canto
It all started back in the 1990s when the founders came up with the idea of creating the thrill of live opera, but in a relaxed atmosphere, that could also be accompanied by a fine dining experience.
For the idea to succeed it had to meet all the expectations of an opera fan along with those that are avid food critics, so the two could work in harmony together in order to bring pleasure to all the senses including hearing and taste.
The founders of the Bel Canto and Opera Venue decided to employ student singers who would eventually become the incredible opera singers of tomorrow, alongside professional wait staff within a venue that had an operatic backdrop, with costumes that were designed by the Paris Opera House workshops.
And after choosing the location, kitting out the restaurant and many, many auditions to recruit the right singers, the first Bel Canto restaurant opened in 2000 on the Right Bank of the River Seine. Then a few years later another was opened just outside Paris in Neuilly-sur-Seine and due to their resounding success a third restaurant and opera venue was opened up in 2008 in London in the UK.
Cuisine and opera at the Bel Canto
With a refined, elegant atmosphere and a baby grand piano located in the dining area, there are a total of twenty pianists and a troupe of 100 opera singers that will bring a unique atmosphere to your evening, and the opera singers will perform in between the courses with operatic classics that you will recognise and enjoy.
And instead of using a stage, these performances and shows are conducted where you eat in between the tables, which makes the whole experience even more intimate and memorable.
But lets now look at the cuisine, which is a three course meal known as the Lyric Menu and as of 2012 it is a cost of €81 per person.
You have a choice of starter such as King prawns with sesame, white cabbage and coriander salad with reduced soy sauce or a Home-made slice of foie gras with a red onion and mango chutney.
The fish main courses could be delights such as Roasted gilthead bream, citronella white butter and seasonal vegetables julienne style or Crayfish risotto with rocket salad, but if you are more of a meat lover, then perhaps a Veal fillet with mashed potatoes flavoured with truffle, baby carrots and a gravy thyme sauce or a Duck fillet with sweet potatoes gratin style, broccoli and cajun sauce.
Then you will have the choice of an assortment of cheeses or a very tempting dessert like a Moist chocolate cake & custard flavoured with coffee or Fresh seasonal fruits flavoured with mint and red fruits.
Of course, all good restaurants do change their menus on a regular basis, just like the Bel Canto does, so the above dishes are just as a guide to some of the delights that may be on offer, when you wish to enjoy an evening of good French food accompanied by tremendous opera.
Access to the Bel Canto restaurant and opera venue
The Bel Canto restaurant in Paris is open every evening from 7.30pm, although it appears that they close for the whole month of August, just like many restaurants in Paris do, and in 2012 they closed a few days before the end of July and did not reopen until the first day of September!
And although you do not have to book at table, this is highly recommended due to its popularity, plus it is also wise to check on the opening.
Also, if you do book, which can be done online or via telephone, then you ensure that you have the table for the complete evening from the first booking time of 7.30pm right up to the latest booking time of 9.30pm and beyond, which means that you can relax and enjoy the whole experience to its fullest.
Now as you would expect from such a venue, smart dress is required and although it is suitable for all the family, it is not a place to take young children. But if you are looking at spending the evening at the Bel Canto with a group of people then booking is required in advance.
When utilising the public transport in Paris, you can reach the Bel Canto via the Metro stops of the Hotel de Ville on line 1 or the Pont Marie on line 7 and there are several different Paris buses that will get you close to this restaurant and opera venue, which include numbers 21, 24, 38, 47, 67, 69, 75, 76, 85, 86, 87 and 96.