Aux Lyonnais: a Lyonnais “bouchon” in Paris
Created in 1890, the house served first as a coal, then wood and finally wine warehouse. In 1914, the Fouet family, then owners of the premises, decided to open the store on the street to introduce its wines to the public. Daniel Violet took over the address just after the Second World War and made it the most popular “bouchon” (typical Lyonnais bistro) in the capital. The “Père Violet” clearly had an immoderate passion for Lyonnais cuisine which, already at that time, seduced the capital and earned a loyal customers base. It is this fervour for the taste of Lyon that made Alain Ducasse fall in love with this mythical address which he took over in 2002.
The bistro retains its red wooden facade and its “Maison lyonnaise” sign. It continues to cultivate the atmosphere of traditional Lyonnais “bouchons”. On the sideboard, an old piston coffee machine lets out a cloud of steam. Behind the wooden counter covered with zinc and pewter, a few bottles, placed in a wine rack placed under a continuous flow of cold water, wait to be ordered. Woodwork and moldings with floral motifs, Art pompier lights and metro style earthenware tiles adorn the walls and ceilings. The contemporary creations of Jean-Claude Novaro, famous glassmaker from Biot (Alpes Maritime), punctuate the space. On both floors, bevelled mirrors reflect the spectacle of the room where the waiters are bustling about, copper sauté pan or orange cast iron casserole in hand. On the oak tables with steel frames, napkins, white plates, deliberately mismatched silver cutlery, faceted goblets for water, balloon glasses for wine wait for the guests.
Vintage dishes up-to-date
Tradition must inspire, not freeze. Marie-Victorine has the freedom of one who is sure of her roots. And having Lyonnaise cuisine in your blood gives you wings. She therefore delivers her own interpretation, lively and biting. If the benchmarks are there (pie crust, pike, blood sausage…), there is nonetheless a lightness and freshness that gives this “bouchon” cuisine a resolutely contemporary tone.
Marie-Victorine Manoa, chef.
Can you be born in a “bouchon”? This is what one might think about Marie-Victorine. In her youth, she spent more time in the famous “bouchon” run by her father, “Le Mercière”, than at home. After the Paul Bocuse Institute, she then moved to masters: Michel Troisgros near Roanne, René Redzepi in Copenhagen, Alex Atala in São Paulo, Daniel Humm in New York. Enough to know that her life is with Lyonnaise cuisine. When, in the autumn of 2021, Alain Ducasse gives her the keys of Aux Lyonnais, it is therefore love at first sight.
Gabrielle Aguilo, restaurant manager.
It is well known that plastic arts and cultural management studies lead to everything. For Gabrielle, they took a circuitous route. Having worked in events, she specialised in gastronomic events. But the commercial functions that kept her away from the field did not satisfy her. It was Alain Ducasse who introduced her to Marie-Victorine and offered her the challenge of becoming restaurant manager at Aux Lyonnais. The dream came true: Gabrielle’s pleasure is to welcome you with the naturalness and joie de vivre that characterize her !
Antoine Boulin, sommelier.
After a degree in hotel and restaurant management, he trained for a year as chef de rang in Florida. He then joined Silversea Cruises, a cruise line based in Monaco, for a year and a half as chef de rang and sommelier. After further training in sommellerie at Wine & Spirit Education Trust, he joined the Maison Ducasse in March 2019, becoming assistant sommelier at Benoit. Antoine has been head sommelier at Aux Lyonnais since the end of August 2021.