Hi- I'm going to Paris for the first time with my wife, and we are really looking forward to enjoying some great French cuisine while avoiding tourist traps. Having lived in New York City for many years, we find that we enjoy finding casual, 'authentic' places when we travel as much as we like the popular options and the more expensive options.
I guess my first question is: Is it even possible to find good dining options in the areas nearby where all of the tourist hotels are? When I say near, I mean within a mile (or 1.5k); 15-20 min walk. A good example is Times Square in NYC; you can find good food, but more restaurants than not are a) expensive and b) good, but not great. There are some choices within a walk, but it's better to travel up/down town.
If so, my second question is: If we are choosing between hotels located near the Arc de Triomphe (George V metro) and further down the Champs-Elysees (Vendome), does it make much of a difference in terms of nearby dining options?
We're really looking for options on a more casual side. When I say casual, it doesn't necessarily mean inexpensive, but more of a relaxed atmosphere and accepting of nice jeans w/ a sportcoat vs. somewhere a little more elegant.
We have no problem taking a taxi or metro, but it's always nice to go for a stroll before/after a meal...
Thanks in advance!