I went to the Institut to see a performance of Ma Biche et Mon Lapin in the basement as part of the Fringe and discovered Le Bistrot where I had lunch. As I was previously unaware of the existence of the Institut, let alone its authentic French cafe, this was a very pleasant surprise. At £13.95 for entree + plat (in my case an excellent salade parisienne and a slightly overcooked beouf bourguignon) this was very good value. Wine at £4.90 for a small (125ml) glass compared with about £14 for a full bottle does not encourage abstinence! Service was friendly and efficient.
The only downside is that the bistro only takes cash, no cards.
As for the academic or cultural work of the Institut I have no knowledge and cannot comment.
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