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A Guide to Ordering Your Steak Like a Frenchman

Nothing epitomises classical French cooking quite like a great steak. Aged for the exact amount of time needed to bring out all the flavour and then grilled, pan-fried or chargrilled to perfection, steak is one of the ultimate dishes to order at a French restaurant. When it comes to ordering like a Frenchman, the real question is how you order it.

Whether you love a fillet, sirloin or rib-eye, learn how to order your steak as the French would with our quick guide below.


Pronounced ‘Bler’

This preference will get you an extremely rare steak. Cooked on a very hot grill for one minute on each side, the result is slightly singed outside with a bloodier inside. This is an order for the true steak connoisseurs.


Pronounced ‘Say-nyon’

This is a term the French use for very rare – the translation of ‘saignant’ is bloody. This preference is cooked slightly longer on the second side than that of a bleu steak, but the result is similar.

À Point

Pronounced ‘Ah pwa’

The French term for ‘perfectly cooked’. Be aware, however, that this preference is not necessarily the usual preference for those ordering in the UK. In France ‘à point’ refers to a steak that is rare/medium-rare, as this is how the majority of French people would prefer it cooked.

Bien Cuit

Pronounced ‘bien kwee’

Although this means ‘well cooked’, in France this version of a medium/well-done steak will still be a little pink in the middle. This preference is cooked until the juices of the steak run brown on its surface.

Très Bien Cuit

This order will ensure your steak is thoroughly cooked all the way through. Meaning ‘very well-done’, this choice is not often ordered in France. However, chefs will fully understand the request!

Steak at Côte Brasserie

To make life a little easier, we take order preferences as you would expect: blue, rare, medium-rare, medium and well-done. Have your steak seasoned and straight off the grill, or choose a sauce from our options available, including Normandy garlic or Roquefort butter, rich Cognac-infused peppercorn sauce or a buttery Béarnaise. Don’t forget to try our steak tartare for a real taste of French cuisine.