You will need leave the city center to unearth La Perle Noire, a high-end restaurant serving French and revamped Hungarian dishes. It's on a quiet section of Andrássy Avenue, Budapest's Champs-Élysées, peppered with residential villas and embassies inside District 6. The cute modernist building from 1937 that houses the restaurant (and also a hotel upstairs) stands out from the predominantly 19th century street view.

Some of the best dishes on the seasonally-changing menu include fine dining staples like foie gras (€26), lamb saddle (€23), and braised pork cheek (€19). The kitchen's forays into reinvented Hungarian classics—veal paprikash (€18) and goulash soup (€8)—didn't leave much of an impression, especially for these prices, and felt like afterthoughts, added to the menu for the sake of tourists. La Perle Noire's weekday three-course lunch prix fixe for €13 is the most economical way to get a taste of Chef Árpád Kovács's elaborate dishes.

Best of all at La Perle Noire is the green terrace overlooking Andrássy Avenue, and offering an exclusive dining experience in the warmer months (it's a striking contrast to the dark, corporate-looking dining room inside). La Perle Noire is rarely more than half-full, but no one, least of all the ever-present owners, seems to mind.

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