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15 Of The Best Restaurants in Toulouse

Outside Bar Concorde in Toulouse
Image: ©2foodtrippers

We didn’t have to look hard to find great restaurants in Toulouse. Instead, our primary challenge was narrowing down the options. Another challenge was a summer heat wave that kept the thermometer over 100° F in the shade.

Nicknamed La Ville Rose (i.e. the pink city) due to the prevalence of light terracotta buildings scattered around the city, Toulouse’s location in Southwest France provides residents and visitors with an embarrassment of culinary riches.

Not only is Toulouse the capital of the Occitanie region, but the city is also in close proximity to duck-filled Gascony and wine-flowing Languedoc. Bordeaux and the Mediterranean Sea are also just a couple hours away by rail or car.

Inside Cecile in Toulouse
Dining is one of the best things to do in Toulouse. It’s also one of the most popular things as evidenced by the sole empty table at Cécile which was held for our reservation. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

And then there’s Toulouse’s status as both one of France’s oldest university cities and a global hub for Airbus employees. The vast number of hungry engineers (both current and future) stokes a restaurant scene that buzzes with energy like an aircraft hums when filled with jet fuel.

It’s not just the engineers. Young chefs are shaking things up in France’s fourth largest city by serving a mix of cuisines that span the globe. Here, coffee shops are just as likely to serve flat whites crafted with single origin beans as they are to brew café au laits. The same goes for natural wine that’s abundantly produced in the Languedoc-Roussillon wine region and imbibed with gusto in Toulouse.

Land and Sea Course at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
Food in Touloluse runs the gamut. We ate this creative ‘land and sea’ dish at Michelin-starred Restaurant Le Cénacle. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Of course, travelers can still find and eat great versions of cassoulet, foie gras and magret de canard at traditional restaurants around town. But you won’t want to limit yourself to those classic French dishes during your visit. If you did that, you’d miss out on eating at some of the best restaurants in Toulouse.

Where To Eat In Toulouse

Inside MAGNUM in Toulouse
Toulouse restaurants like MAGNUM have easy access to locally produced wine as well as some of France’s best ingredients. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

You won’t be disappointed if you anticipate finding and eating great cassoulet in Toulouse. However, both the depth and breadth of restaurants in Toulouse will likely exceed your culinary expectations as they did ours.

Beyond eating an exceptional traditional meal, we ate great food at one of Toulouse’s five Michelin-starred restaurants and at neo-bistros. We also ate well at wine bars and sandwich shops, not to mention a trio of excellent patisseries, located in France’s pink city.

Based on our on-the-ground and in-the-mouth research, these are our picks for the best places to eat in Toulouse:

Restaurant Emile – Cassoulet and Other Regional Dishes

Magret de Canard at Restaurant Emile in Toulouse
The artfully plated magret de canard arrived atop silky carrot purée. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Let’s start by saying that Toulouse isn’t technically in Gascony. At least that’s what we were repeatedly told in Toulouse. So technically one shouldn’t be able to enjoy Gascony’s treats like duck, foie gras, etc. at restaurants in the pink city.

Au contraire, mon frère!!

A walk through this unassuming food city’s markets reveals a variety of treats including well-fatted quackers and the region’s distinctively narrow broad beans. It only makes sense for Toulouse’s chefs to use these ingredients to prepare great regional dishes like cassoulet. Especially cassoulet.

Foie Gras at Restaurant Emile in Toulouse
Big enough to share, this Foie Gras starter provided a luxurious start to our lunch at Restaurant Emile. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

That’s why we placed Restaurant Emile at the top of our must eat Toulouse restaurants despite the brutal August heat that made the thermometer creep above the 100° F mark. Open since 1947 and adjacent to a tree-lined square, Emile serves all of the region’s famous dishes including but not limited to cassoulet. However, we wondered if we could really eat cassoulet in the heat.

In a nod to the weather, we chose an outdoor table under one of the restaurant’s umbrellas. And, for a hot minute (pun intended), we considered ordering salads. But no way! We instead kept to plan by ordering traditional dishes starting with cassoulet, Toulouse’s ultimate winter comfort dish.

Cassoulet at Restaurant Emile in Toulouse
Eating cassoulet in Toulouse was such a prioity that we ate this excellent version at our very first meal. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Since we eat with our eyes, let’s start with the appearance. Our bean stew arrived at the table in a large, rustic, shallow earthenware bowl caramelized from rim to rim and topped with a crusty leg of duck confit. There weren’t any colorful vegetables or flowery adornments. Instead, when it came to Emile’s cassoulet, brown was indeed beautiful.

Removing a georgette spoon, France’s elegant answer to the spork, from under the beans revealed a porky stew that was delightfully saucy without bing overly gloopy. We stabbed at the garlicky saucisse toulouse (Toulouse sausage) with that clever utensil, delighting in the stew’s meaty flavors and dreaming of the kind of chilly temperatures that motivated the dish’s invention.

Sorbet Dessert at Restaurant Emile in Toulouse
Opting for sorbet over classic French desserts like baba au rhum and Grand Manier soufflé was no sacrifice thanks to the simpler dessert’s sweet meringue crumbles and crispy tuile. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We also shared a generous torchon of foie gras, as one does in this part of the world, along with magret de canard (duck breast) cooked to a precise deep red, rosy pink. The magret was accompanied by a melange of roasted tomatoes, wilted bok choy and a silky carrot puree. Each dish provided comfort but still displayed a degree of tightness that we love in French cuisine.

We finished our meal with sorbet –  three icy, refreshing quenelles of lemon, passion fruit and raspberry respectively since volcanic temperatures and Grand Marnier soufflé don’t mix. Later, the next day, we purchased a Georgette spork at a local housewares store. Who knows? Maybe we’ll use it to eat cassoulet at home in the future.

Pro Tip
Call in advance for a reservation since Restaurant Emile doesn’t take reservations via email.

Restaurant Emile is located at 13 Place Saint-Georges, 31000 Toulouse, France.

MAGNUM – Convivial Bistro / Natural Wine Bar

Owner in Front of MAGNUM in Toulouse
Pascal Penchenat brings years of global hospitality to MAGNUM, a cosy bistro located in the center of Toulouse. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We love the way French restaurateurs like MAGNUM’s Pascal Penchenat bend the rules for modern bistro dining. The factors that make la cuisine so great are present in his dishes with unconventional spins, like serving fregola as a main course.

The idea of serving Sardinian pasta would likely offend French sensibilities if not for the super concentrated olive flavor derived from a specially made olive jus. So French!

Fregola at MAGNUM in Toulouse
France and Italy forged a happy place in this bowl before the resulting fregola dish made its way to our equally happy bellies. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Open since 2019, MAGNUM is an intimate bistro that fills very quickly and only has room for those who make advance reservations. You’ll want to plan accordingly.

After securing the requisite reservation, we smugly witnessed owner and hospitality veteran Penchenat turn numerous clients away from the small space. He and Chef Anthony Sennheimer tightly run the ship as a team.

Sennheimer brews up dishes downstairs while Penchenat holds court with guests upstairs. Not only does this experienced approach make for an intimate dining experience, but their passion for the profession shows through the food and locally produced natural wines on offer.

Besides the aforementioned fregola, we enjoyed a simple plating of pollock with vegetables plus two starters that featured beans – one a creamy puree of fresh favas and the other prepared with locally grown broad beans and chorizo.

Of course we drank glasses of natural wine with each course including the final sweet course. While we loved each bite and sip, we loved ‘shooting the breeze’ with Penchenat in MAGNUM’s intimate space most of all.

Pro Tip
Order wine by the glass if you want to sample a variety of local wines during your meal at MAGNUM.

MAGNUM is located at 5 Rue Perchepinte, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Cécile – Farm to Table Neo-Bistro

Outside Cecile in Toulouse
Located below a parking garage, Cecile is an urban oasis. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Despite Toulouse’s fame for its traditional dishes, the pink city has no lack of modern neo-bistros. Options include Contre-Pied, Le Restaurant Sans Nom and Les Têtes d’Ail just to name a few.

However, after receiving a passionate recommendation from a local barista, our meal at Cécile was practically inevitable.

Swordfish Tataki at Cecile in Toulouse
Details like zucchini raita and pepper gazpacho elevated this tandoori swordfish tataki starter during our meal at Cécile. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We felt like we were dining in a garden during our lunch at Cécile despite the fact that we were actually dining beneath a brutalist parking garage – not an easy feat to achieve. Open since 2020 and located next to the Marché des Carmes (see below), the sun-streamed restaurant bustled with locals during our mid-day meal with not one empty table and nary a tourist in sight.

And the food? Leisurely served over three courses, it was all local, fresh, seasonal and tasty. The same can be said of our glasses of natural wine selected to pair with food choices that started with colorful tandoori swordfish tataki and an equally colorful tomato-filled puff pastry.

Daryl’s freshly grilled salmon was excellent – expertly cooked with farm vegetables and a wonderful sauce. Mindi’s beef cheek popped with flavors provided by salty caper berries and herby tarragon mayo. A small but mighty fromage plate featuring three local cheese and an almond financier topped with dollops of fresh cream and apricot sorbet ended our meal with just the right notes.

Pro Tip
Shop at adjacent Marché des Carmes before your lunch. It’s one of the city’s best markets and will probably be closed by the time you finish your meal.

Cécile is located at 43 Place des Carmes, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Restaurant Le Cénacle – Michelin Starred Restaurant

Dining Room at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
Le Cénacle’s stately dining room is an auspicious place to experience a Michelin-starred meal in Toulouse. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

It’s impossible to enter Le Cénacle, a Toulouse’s Michelin starred restaurant, without being struck by the large, deep fireplace in the center of a stately room. We were happy to be seated in that front room with a prime view of servers holding court with the restaurant’s mostly French diners.

Pouring Sauce on Meat Course at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
Pork sauce added the finishing touch to our pork loin course. Other touches included pasta, mushroom and truffle. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Like most of high end dining affairs, Le Cenacle offers wine pairings to go with its six and seven course dinner menus. We chose the seafood-leaning menu expression (our fourth course included a lovely slab of local pork). Drawn creatively from the typical Michelin playbook, the food was tasty with generous servings and plates that were fun to eat.

Our favorite dish involved variations of mackerel (grilled and tartare) served over a breakable tuile with clever tomato preparations that included ice cream and spherifications. Breaking that tuile revealed a luscious bowl of burrata. And, while presenting a medley of preparations and tastes isn’t an original idea, Le Cenacle’s version celebrated the pure joy of eating. 

Spoon with Land and Sea Course at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
If we had to pick a favorite dish at Le Cénacle, it would easily be this starter which combined mackerel with sweet tomatoes and smokey burrata. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The same goes for the trio of tuna that followed. Who doesn’t love a range of fresh tuna tastes from seared to cured? We sure do and nothing in the dish was overthought.

In fact, Chef Clément Convard demonstrated a maturity that belies his age in all of our dishes. Currently Toulouse’s youngest Michelin starred chef, Convard’s resume and craftsmanship bode well for his future.

Fish Course with Tuna at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
Le Cénacle presented us with three types of tuna – grilled tuna, seared tuna and tuna charcuterie. Although we agreed to disagree on which tuna type was best, we concurred that the accompanying tapenade was great. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

While we appreciate the chef’s skills and credentials now, we were initially drawn to Le Canacle by the restaurant’s cheese trolley which, to us, should be part of every Michelin-starred meal in France. And, as we anticipated, the cheese course was another meal highlight.

We chose from a vast cheese selection that included Livarot from Normandy, excellent Roquefort and Bethmale, a local cheese from the Pyrenees. Daryl chose his favorites while Mindi put herself in the server’s capable hands.

Cheese Trolley at Le Cenacle in Toulouse
Is it wrong that we secretly wanted to taste all of the cheeses on Le Cénacle’s cheese trolley? | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Almost overkill after the cheese course, our dessert was a breath of freshness – literally – that’s what it was called. The melange of limoncello mouse, cucumber pearls and a black caraway tuile provided a light cap to a terrific meal.

Pro Tip
Consider eating lunch at Restaurant Le Cénacle if you can’t score a dinner reservation or if the dinner pricing is above your budget.

Restaurant Le Cénacle is located inside the La Cour des Consuls Hôtel & Spa at 46 Rue des Couteliers, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Le Détaillant – Artisan Sandwich Shop

Sandwich at Le Detaillant in Toulouse
Although tempted by Le Détaillant’s Spanish meats and cheeses, we kept this sandwich French by choosing duck rillette and salad instead of jamon and manchego. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Le Détaillant is a little hipper than other Toulouse sandwich shops. The team at the simple deli, located just a couple blocks off the East side of the Pont Neuf, prepares their sandwiches with top-quality ingredients that are local, Mediterranean and Spanish.

You can order one sandwich with duck rillette and another with bellota. You can also pick toppings like cheese (manchego and raclette), piquillo peppers, sweet peppers, more charcuterie or salad. It’s all fairly simple.

The shop’s owner, Sébastien Salvet, whose pedigree comes from working with local star chef Michel Serran, makes it all look simple. However, his expertise shows in the shop’s crafted sandwiches.

Wrapped Sandwich at Le Detaillant in Toulouse
A red and white checkered gingham wrapper stylishly ensconsed our Le Détaillant sandwich. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Aside from Le Détaillant’s hip yet rustic space and utilitarian name which loosely translates to The Retail Shop, Salvet dishes out beautifully dressed sandwiches with verdant leafy greens. He also serves them on artisan bread baked by local boulangerie/pâtisserie Maison Serres.

Salvet’s attention to detail extends to sandwich wrappers which provide a neat gingham bow around the lunchtime gift inside. They also make the sandwiches suitable for lunchtime picnics and train snacks.

Pro Tip
Le Détaillant typically sells out of that bread as early as 2 pm every day. We arrived around that time and were lucky enough to snag the shop’s last baguette and therefore the last sandwich of the day. Phew!

Le Détaillant is located at 17 Rue Peyrolières, 31000 Toulouse, France

SUPERETTE – Smash Burgers + Fries

Burger and Fries at Superette in Toulouse
Our quest for the perfect burger in Europe continued but didn’t end at Superette in Toulouse. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Since France is located in a continent that doesn’t always seem to understand American food, we generally applaud the French approach to hamburgers. The same goes for the people of Toulouse as respects their forward approach to food.

But smash patty burgers? This should be something that the French accomplish in their sleep but, alas, Superette, despite its ultra-hipster vibe and excellent t-shirts, doesn’t quite nail them. 

The white tiled, minimalistic counter channels Brooklyn with basic menu items displayed in a stylish font over a flat top grill and deep fryers. Our issue was with the smash patty execution.

Discover the world’s best burgers.

The cooks at Superette didn’t just smash our burger. They literally made a crêpe out of it, creating a finished patty that was more dry and burnt than crisp and fatty. C’mon Toulouse! We know you have it in you to make a better smash burger.

That being said, Superette’s crisp, golden brown fries were excellent. The same goes for the tangy dipping sauce that came with the fries. Plus, we never complain in Europe when we get both ketchup and mustard without asking.

Pro Tip
Order a Brooklyn lager if you’re craving a truly American burger experience.

SUPERETTE is located at 7 Place de l’Estrapade, 31300 Toulouse, France.

La Fiancée – OG Toulouse Brunch Spot

Outside La Fiancee in Toulouse
Brunch is always the best meal of the day at La Fiancée thanks to the cafe’s daily brunch menu. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Forget always being a bridesmaid. La Fiancée has been the bride since the Toulouse cafe opened over a decade ago with a focus on two popular concepts – brunch and coffee.

We assume that La Fiancée was unique when it served its first salty pancakes and poured its original flat white. Back then, in 2012, France was behind the times when it came to both concepts. But times have changed in cities like Toulouse where finding specialty coffee and brunch is practically as easy as crossing the street.

And, yet, La Foamcée is as popular today as it was when its owners first walked down the proverbial aisle. Maybe even more so.

We happily joined the party (or should we say reception?) when we wandered into La Fiancée on a sunny weekday morning and grabbed the last available outdoor table. We quickly ordered two flat whites crafted with Brazilian beans roasted by Coutume, one of our favorite Paris coffee shops, and settled in for brunch.

Ordering salty pancakes was a must since the signature dish is topped with with two fried eggs and artisanal bacon. The same applied to the breakfast bun based on a menu description that listed locally sourced sausage, cheddar cheese, a fried egg, lettuce and sriracha mayo.

Our verdict? While our coffees were solid, the salty pancakes were tough and not salty at all. Additionally, the bacon served on top of the pancakes was overly fatty. And, note to chefs – don’t call it sriracha mayo if you’re not going to add any sriracha.

Fun Fact
La Fiancée opened its second location in Marseille near the Vieux Port.

La Fiancée is located at 54 Rue Peyrolières, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Pâtisserie Conté – Traditional Toulouse Pâtisserie

Outside Patisserie Conte in Toulouse
Pâtisserie Conté is a prime spot for tasting a fénetra, Toulouse’s signature pastry. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Open since 1938, multi-generational Pâtisserie Conté feels old until you realize that the nearby Cathédrale St-Étienne was built in the 13th century. At the end of the day, age doesn’t really matter. What matters is that Pâtisserie Conté’s product is solid.

As is the case with traditional Toulouse bakeries, Pâtisserie Conté sells a variety of traditional French pastries. You can taste several of them, both big and small, including macarons, mille-feuilles, saint-honoré cakes and tarts filled with both chocolate and pear. If you follow this approach, we recommend sitting down and enjoying your pastries with a cup of tea or coffee.

Fenetre at Patisserie Conte in Toulouse
Eating a fénetra in Toulouse is a must for pastry fans. This one at Pâtisserie Conté was our favorite. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

However, the better plan is to order a fénetra at Pâtisserie Conté. Invented in Toulouse centuries ago, it’s the city’s signature pastry and one that’s difficult to find in other parts of France. Pâtisserie Conté’s version is excellent.

For the unitiated, a fénetra is a layered pastry made with sweet dough, apricot jam, candied lemon and almond paste. Pâtisserie Conté also sells a full sized cake version that’s suitable to share with several friends.

Pro Tip
Visit Cathédrale St-Étienne either before or after your sweets break at Pâtisserie Conté. It’s literally a one-minute walk from the pastry shop to the cathedral and vice versa.

Pâtisserie Conté is located at 37 Rue Croix Baragnon, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Le Régal Oriental – Tunisian Pastry Shop

Outside Le Regal Oriental in Toulouse
Le Régal Orientale is neither regal nor Asian. It’s actually a Tunisian bakery that sells a myriad of tempting sweet treats. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We normally associate French bakery culture with croissants, tarts and cakes. But modern France is an international place with Toulouse fitting in the bottom piece of the country’s multicultural hexagon. Enter Le Régal Orientale and its array of exotic régales (i.e. treats).

Unlike Pâtisserie Conté (see above), Le Régal Orientale doesn’t sell traditional French pastries. Instead, this Toulouse bakery sells what it calls ‘Orientale’ (eastern in Latin) pastries.

Discover more global desserts.

Pastries and Tea at Le Regal Oriental in Toulouse
Our delightful breakfast at Le Régal Orientale inspired us to add Tunisia to our travel wish list. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We enjoyed roaming through the door of the Tunisian shop, wandering past pyramids of makrouds in the front window and surveying all of the marvelous honey-drenched sweets lining the right side wall. They’re all here from baklava to zalabia (a pastry to similar to jalebi in India).

Our challenge was narrowing the choices to a makroud à la figue (North Africa’s version of a fig newton) and a flaky, webbed levantine kadaif. Keeping our breakfast international, we enjoyed our treats with a silver pot of mint tea, as one does at a spot like Le Régal Orientale.

Pro Tip
While you can buy Le Régal Orientale’s pastries to enjoy later at your hotel or apartment, the better option is to eat them inside the salon or at an outside table along with a pot of hot mint tea.

Le Régal Oriental is located at 38 Rue Charles de Rémusat, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Sandyan Pâtisserie-Boulangerie par Yannick Delpech

Kouign Amann at Sandyan Patisserie-Boulangerie par Yannick Delpech in Toulouse
We couldn’t resist ordering a kouign-amann during our morning stop at Sandyan Pâtisserie. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

At Sandyan Pâtisserie, near Marché Victor Hugo, discs of kouign-amann sit in glass picture box cases next to cakes, financiers, croissants and tigres. As is usually the case in France, they look beautiful.

If this is your first morning in Toulouse, this sophisticated patisserie is a great spot to visit either before or after perusing the stalls of the city’s most famous market. We say this from personal experience.

Fenetralia at at Sandyan Patisserie-Boulangerie par Yannick Delpech in Toulouse
We paused to admire the inside of this fenetralia before we bit into the airy almond-apricot pastry. One bite led to another and ended with smiles on our faces. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Helmed by self-taught pastry chef Yannick Delpech, Sandyan buzzes with activity. Its box-like display setup drew us in like moths to the flame. In this scenario, the flame was the pastry shop’s individual-sized fenetralia. And, yes, we were the moths.

If you’re going to try just one pastry at Sandyan, this gussied up, puffier version of the traditional Toulouse tart is the way to go. We ordered that, plus a kouign-amann and a pink Lyonaisse praline tart. Made with candied citron marmalade and sugared almond crumble, the layered fenetralia was easily the best of the three.

Pro Tip
Buy a sourdough boule to enjoy later with a hunk of cheese.

Sandyan Pâtisserie-Boulangerie par Yannick Delpech is located at 54bis Rue d’Alsace Lorraine, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Le Concorde – Neighborhood Bar

Inside Bar Concorde in Toulouse
La Concorde’s shabby chic interior is a feast for the eyes. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Changing owners multiple times since it opened in the 19th century, La Concorde is a Toulouse bar with stories to tell. Some of these stories are hidden behind walls decorated with antique mirrors and vintage posters. Others are shared by the bar’s neighborhood patrons.

Residents of Toulouse’s Les Chalets district convene on the bar’s sweeping terrace from morning until midnight. Those locals, including more than a few university students, are more likely to order beer and cocktails than wine – a trend we’ve noticed all over France. In fact, Daryl, who sipped a cool glass of rosé, was one of the few wine drinkers during our early evening drinking session.

Daryl Drinks Wine at Bar Concorde in Toulouse
While Daryl doesn’t normally add ice to his wine, exceptions are made when the thermometer exceeds 100° F / 38° C. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Every rattan bistro chair was full that evening, at least the ones placed around outdoor tables. And why not? Bar Le Concorde is a place to see and be seen. It’s also a place to mingle with strangers.

Formerly called Le Café de la Concorde, La Concorde serves food in addition to drinks. Expect to find small plates in the evening and multi-course formulas during breakfast and lunch. And, since it’s a neighborhood bar, also expect reasonable prices.

Pro Tip
Start your evening at La Concorde with a glass of pastis, a popular anise-flavored French liqueur with roots in the South of France.

La Concorde is located at 17 Rue de la Concorde, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Campagne – Wine Bar with Benefits

Outside Campagne in Toulouse
Walking past Campagne is practically impossible due to its fun sign and cheerful decor. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

You’ll find Campagne just a short walk from Le Capitole. It’s a stylish place. Walking through the door, we were immediately struck by the orange moped perched on the restaurant’s rear wall and the neon ‘Campagne’ sign behind the bar.

Campagne may not call itself a wine bar but, to us, it’s a wine bar in every positive sense of the word.

Open Kitchen at Campagne in Toulouse
You can call Campagne whatever you want. We choose to call it a wine bar. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Campagne serves great aperitif boards which may be its main attraction. Our board was topped with two excellent cheeses (local chevre and bethmale) and charcuterie (chorizo, jambon and saucisson), all procured within 150 kilometers of Toulouse. 

Beside the board, we ate a few snack-sized plates – pork cromesqui (croquettes), slow cooked lamb shoulder and a salad built around an espuma of fresh sheep cheese. We can’t say that any of the snack plates were outstanding but they were all competently executed for the bar’s mostly edgy, local crowd.

Ordering cool glasses of rosé was a must considering the hellacious August temperatures we’d endured that day. We later progressed to heartier glasses of red.

There’s no denying that Campagne’s dining room is a fun space. But, beyond its fanciful decor, it’s also an exciting wine bar with a firm place in Toulouse’s growing dining scene.

When and if we return to Campagne, we’ll probably just order one small plate and tell the server to keep the cheese and charcuterie coming. Or, maybe we’ll try Campagne’s lunch menu which includes a starter, plate and dessert. Either way, wine will happen.

Pro Tip
Don’t miss Campagne’s boards whether you order one topped with charcuterie, cheese or both.

Campagne is located at 32 Bis Rue des Lois, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Le 5 Wine Bar – Upscale Toulouse Wine Bar

Inside Le 5 Wine Bar in Toulouse
With its pink brick walls, Le Bar 5’s downstairs cave is a Toulouse gem. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

No fewer than five Toulouse locals recommended Le 5 Wine Bar to us. Clearly, the city’s residents take a lot of pride in the wine bar which has garnered accolades from Wine Spectator, World of Wine and World of Fine Wine – most notably the latter’s designation of ‘Best Wine Bar in the World’ in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

After our visit, we’re not sure why this wine bar would be called the best in the world. Maybe the ‘wine professionals’ were impressed with Le 5 Wine Bar’s automated Coravin wine dispenser system. Without doubt, it’s a great way to taste a selection of 40 different wines, produced both regionally and afar, without breaking the bank. But it’s not unique – we’ve seen a similar system in Lisbon.

Self Service Wine at Le 5 Wine Bar in Toulouse
It’s easy to belly up to Le 5 Wine’s Bar’s wine bar. Guests can serve themself using the bar’s automated dispenser system. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Or maybe they liked Le 5 Wine Bar’s tapas menu which features small plates that pair well with the bar’s extensive wine collection. Tapas is a ‘thing’ in Toulouse that we encountered at various spots around town.

As for us, we appreciated Le 5 Wine Bar’s concept and enjoyed the few wines that we tasted while pre-gaming our dinner at Restaurant Le Cénacle (see above). We also liked the wine bar’s below-ground cave with its arches and exposed pink brick walls. But best wine bar in the world? We’ll leave that designation to the pros.

Pro Tip
Sign up for a workshop if you want to experience a themed wine tasting at Le 5 Wine Bar.

Le 5 Wine Bar is located at 5 Rue de la Bourse, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Toulouse Markets

Inside Marche Victor Hugo in Toulouse
Some of the best food in Toulouse is prepared and sold at the city’s markets. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Shopping at Toulouse markets is a great way to access food products sourced from some of the best agricultural areas in France.

Aside from all the duck-based products produced in nearby Gascony, these markets sell wonderful cheeses and meats produced at nearby farms and equally wonderful seafood plucked from the Mediterranean sea.

There are also a number of international vendors selling goods sourced from nearby countries like Spain, Italy and Portugal plus faraway locales like Sri Lanka and Vietnam.

Marché Victor Hugo

You’ll want to start your Toulouse market exploration at Marché Victor Hugo. Dating back to 1926, this centrally located market is the city’s most prominent and largest public market with seven butchers, five poultry vendors, six produce stands, four cheese stands and five bakeries plus a pizzeria, five restaurants and a tripe stand.

Walk through this market and you’ll find all sorts of products including piles of foie gras, enormous magret de canard, all manner of sausage, magnificent steaks on the bone, gigantic prawns, whole scallops, cheeses from all over France and Spain, regional versions of pâte en croute and even pasteis da natas. 

If you’re staying at an apartment with a kitchen or are looking for some fun souvenirs, Marché Victor Hugo is a paradise. And, since it’s located in a vibrant neighborhood with amazing kitchen shops, French and international pastry stores and Asian markets, you can eat in or around the market and make a day of your visit.

Marché des Carmes

When we saw the concrete spiral in the center of the Carmes neighborhood, we had little idea of the wonderful market that existed beneath the 1960s era structure. We don’t know what the French architectural fascination is with brutalist, cylindrical parking garages. We’ve seen similar structures in Lyon and feel like we’ve seen them in other French towns too.

Built centuries ago over the site of a Carmelite monastery, Marché des Carmes is a simpler, smaller market compared to Marché Victor Hugo. Although many of the vendors are the same at both markets, the Carmes market stood out to us with its mosaic tiled stands and wide, uncrowded aisles. As a bonus, the unassuming neighborhood market also has international traiteurs like New Vientiane from Laos.

Pro Tip
Bring a canvas bag when you shop at a Toulouse market. You’ll need it if you buy edible souvenirs to enjoy at home like the olive loaf and saucissons that we purchased at Marché des Carmes.

Marché Couvert des Carmes is located at 1 Place des Carmes, 31000 Toulouse, France.
Marché Victor Hugo is located at Pl. Victor Hugo, 31000 Toulouse, France

Various French Taco Shops

French Tacos in Toulouse
We spotted these French tacos at a Toulouse cafe and later ate one at a Toulouse kabab shop. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Toulouse isn’t the home of the French tacos – they were apparently invented in the outskirts of Lyon. However, French tacos seem to be everywhere in Toulouse. Not wanting to miss out of the phenomenon, we shared one at the end of a full day of food tripping.

We kind of knew this already but eating French tacos (apparently, it’s always spelled with an ‘s’) confirmed that France’s tacos aren’t anything like their Mexican brethren. Instead, they’re more like a square version of what are commonly called durum kebabs at most European doner shops. The one we ate was closed, square and filled with shoarma and other tasty bits.

Pro Tip
Eat French tacos at a Toulouse kabab shop if you’re hungry after a night out partying.

Kabob and French taco shops are located throughout Toulouse. We ate French Tacos at Route 66 Tacos located at 64 Boulevard de Strasbourg, 31000 Toulouse, France.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top foods to eat at Toulouse restaurants?

Toulouse restaurants serve a variety of foods ranging from traditional dishes like cassoulet to global foods like hamburgers and pizza.

Are Toulouse restaurants expensive?

Toulouse restaurants are priced in line with other French cities.

Is tipping necessary in Toulouse?

No. Tipping is optional in the France.

Where did Anthony Bourdain eat in Toulouse?

Bourdain never filmed a TV show in France’s fourth largest city.

What time do people eat dinner in Toulouse?

People typically eat dinner between 7pm and 9pm; however, some restaurants and pubs stay open much later. Late night diners will have no problem finding kababs and French tacos throughout the city.

Are restaurant reservations necessary in Toulouse?

Reservations are necessary for most Toulouse restaurants. Failing to make advance reservations will likely result in dining disappointment.

How many Toulouse restaurants have Michelin stars?

Toulouse currently has one two-starred Michelin restaurant (Py-r) and four one-starred Michelin restaurants (Hedone, Le Cénacle, Michel Sarran and Stéphane Tournié – Les Jardins de l’Opéra). There are additional starred restaurants not far from Toulouse.

Things To Do In Toulouse

Just like you won’t be hungry in Toulouse, you also won’t be bored. We recommend starting your non-culinary Toulouse exploration at the following sites:

Hotel Lobby in Toulouse.
It’s not too soon to start planning your trip to Toulouse. We started planning our tip by booking a room at Hotel Innes by HappyCulture. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Toulouse Planning Checklist

Jardin Japonais Pierre Baudis in Toulouse
We experienced a moment of zen at Toulouse’s Jardin Japonais Pierre Baudis. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Hungry For More In France?

Lyon Restaurants - Social IMG
Onion Soup with Spoon at Au Pied de Cochon in Paris
Strasbourg Restaurants - Social IMG
Red Beach Selfie in Santorini

About the Authors

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website. Since launching the site in 2012, they’ve traveled to over 40 countries in their quest to bring readers a unique taste of the world.


Article Updates
We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

We self-funded our trip to Toulouse and paid for all of the food featured in this guide.

Original Publication Date: September 11, 2023


Friday 8th of December 2023

Good advice. A magret is a duck breast not a leg. Never did understand how Le 5 wine bar could be rated world’s best.

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