My wife and I will be traveling by car through quite a bit of France next month (July 2014) and although we plan to do a lot of picnicking and snacking on things we buy from shops and markets, we want to have at least one or two truly amazing restaurant meals that we will remember for a lifetime. Paris is not on our itinerary this time--I have visited Paris three times--but Lyon is. I know almost nothing about Lyon, but I have read it is considered the culinary heart of France. I have read a number of threads here with Lyon restaurant recommendations. From what I have read here and in travel guidebooks, I now am aware there is a distinct Lyonnaise cuisine, and the quintessential place to eat in Lyon is a bouchon. You must be amazed at my ignorance, but we all have to start somewhere. So this is as far as I have gotten in our planning. Sadly, we have only ONE full day in Lyon. We arrive in the morning and leave the next morning. We want to eat.
1. What restaurant(s) should we consider if we want to have the kind of meal we will remember for a lifetime? (This assumes I can even get a reservation.) Is my instinct correct that Lyon, as the supposed culinary heart of France, might actually be a better place to have such an experience than Paris? I have never eaten at any of Paris' temples of gastronomy, mostly due to lack of time. This particular trip, however, is as much about eating as anything else.
2. Would it be a better value to have this meal as a lunch rather than a dinner? Does anyone offer an amazing prix-fixe lunch that is just too good to miss?
3. We most certainly do also want to experience a bouchon. Any recent experiences that might add something to what others have recommended before here? If the old reliable recommendations are just as reliable as always, no need to list them--I can use the search function here just fine. So my initial inclination is to try to have lunch at a restaurant that will leave us with lasting memories, and then in the evening enjoy a bouchon meal. Does this thinking make sense?
4. Not to offend Chow, but is there a site on which these questions might get more attention from more Lyon experts? I don't see a lot of recent Lyon posts on here. No problem if the site is in French only.