Finding France: Cafe des 2 Moulins

By Elie - 1:59 PM

So...I haven't written about food in a while now but I felt like this was an opportunity that was too good to be missed. That's right, I'm still rambling about Paris though we've been back for almost 2 months now. Also, I'd actually think of this as a bonus from the time I talked about the 3 Reasons Why I Fell in Love with Montmartre because I'm today, I'm going to rave about... 

Cafe des 2 Moulins

Having gotten hungry after going around Montmartre, we decided to grab dinner in the village before heading back to our Airbnb. As I remembered writing about this place during my freelance stint, a quick Google search led my other half and I to Cafe des 2 Moulins in Rue Lepic. 

The walk from the Sacre Coeur Basillica took us a little under 15-minutes, but that was also because we took the slowest walk of our lives to take in the vibes of the village. Alternatively, we later found out that the Blanche Metro station would be just 3-minutes away, which was how we got back into the city centre after dinner anyway. 

A bar and cafe in one

At first glance, Cafe des 2 Moulins looked like any typically rundown canteen where food may or may not be good so you're just taking your chances. Reviews on Google were also rather poor, clocking in at a 4.0 score with over 4 thousand reviews (accurate as of 2022) so I had gotten rather worried when we stepped in. 

It's giving me 90s style diner vibes 

If you're a fan of French movies however, you'd recognise Cafe des 2 Moulin sin a heartbeat because, yes - this is where the famed 2001 romantic comedy, Amelie took place. Allegedly where the character, Amelie (played by Audrey Tautou) worked at in the movie, I'm sure the cafe became a hot spot for tourists after. 

Perhaps to keep up with times, the menu at Cafe des 2 Moulins was accessible only on our phones and unfortunately seemed to come only in French. Luckily for us, we had a helpful waiter - who though claimed he had terrible English - explain to us whatever was available for the night. We loved his enthusiasm throughout the night, coming over to check on us ever so slightly whenever he could and he gave really good recommendations in terms of food and wine pairing. 

Baked escargots

For starters, we ordered a set of escargots because while you're in Paris, you gotta do as the Parisians do. We found that the escargots were not amazing - unlike one of those that we had somewhere in town on a separate day. It was great as a starter, but I wouldn't call it a must-order or regret kind of dish. 

Medium rare flank steak served with homemade bearnaise sauce and fries

Having suffered through a month-long toothache just the month before our trip to Paris, I knew I needed to treat myself to all the steak I could on this holiday. And to that, I picked out the flank steak that came highly recommended by the waiter and I regretted nothing. In fact, YOU may regret if you don't order this while you're at Cafe des 2 Moulins. 

The steak was cooked perfectly to a sear of medium rare, and when paired with the homemade bearnaise sauce resulted in such a delicate flavour. It was equal parts of juicy and chewy, and that kept me going back for more bites after every cut. This was paired with a pinot noir that unsurprisingly elevated the flavours so well, I truly wish I could pop right back there now as I'm writing this post. 

Duck confit served with duck fat reduction and a side of the most amazing potatoes in my life

Although my other half had initially wanted the squid, the cafe unfortunately ran out of that for the evening. As a result, he opted for the duck confit that was served with a sauce that we later learned was simply a reduction of duck fats (?!) and one of the best, creamiest roast potatoes ever. Why I mention that we only later learned about the sauce was that we both really liked how it was sweet and savoury both at once, but we couldn't make out the flavour properly. Our waiter - bless his heart - tried to explain to us how the sauce was made, and we were blown away.

What we also appreciated was how the waiter recommended that he change his drink order from a white wine (that would have otherwise paired well with seafood) to a red wine since he was now having red meats. 10 points for being proactive and attentive all in one.

And finally, the famed Creme Brulee

The creme brulee was unsurprisingly Cafe des 2 Moulins' most popular dessert on the menu and while it could have been an effect from the movie, Amelie, it should have also been because it was so good. While it wasn't the best we've had in Paris, I still enjoyed every last spoonful of the dessert at the end of the night. We could definitely tell everyone's been ordering this here, because our waiter simply went, "But of course..." when we put in our order.

Our entire meal cost us a whooping €72.90 for 1 starter, 2 mains, 1 dessert, 2 glasses of wines, and an espresso. It was the most expensive meal we've had at Paris though I wouldn't have said it wasn't worthwhile. Of course, that doesn't mean it's not pricey either though I believe much of this had to do with it being half a tourist attraction and half a diner-esque cafe. 

Service can be a tad slow at the Cafe des 2 Moulins, so you should expect to spend about an hour or so here, with 30 minutes of those being wait times. Given that there was only 1 waiter who we could see the whole night, I do think they tried their best. The toilets at the cafe was also rather poor, with a broken tap that requires some skills to work.

And then we said bye

All that being said, I'd say Cafe des 2 Moulins is worth a visit if you don't mind paying a small premium for the vibes and bragging rights to say you've been where Amelie was filmed. There are some hits and misses that the cafe has, though I don't think it warrants enough to tell people not to visit. Remember that your own judgement makes a good gauge, though I'd really love to be back for that steak and duck confit someday.

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