Pierre Meneau’s Crom’Exquis, La Villa, Les Vendanges de Montmartre, Michelin Great Britain & Ireland 2013 & Saveurs Du Palais Buzz

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Pierre Meneau’s Crom’Exquis, La Villa, Les Vendanges de Montmartre, Michelin Great Britain & Ireland 2013 & Saveurs Du Palais Buzz
Obviously the first question to ask Pierre Meneau is, “how on earth do you follow such a famous father?”  Meneau looks surprised, “there’s no problem, I compare our relationship to that of Paul McCartney and Stella. They’re both creating, but in entirely different ways”. Meneau’s Crom’Exquis, launched last week, is already packed. The boy’s doing well, knows what he, and his clients, want of his addy. “Casual and fast lunch in less than 45 minutes. More of a “contemporary silver service” at night, with Miles Davis and Co. in the background, Meneau’s signature Cromesquis in the foreground. It’s his shtick, some do tapas, some do sushi, Meneau’s putting the accents on Cromequis, they are his, more or less exclusive, until word gets round, then they’ll all be at it, the tapas/sushis forgotten and there’s a Cromesquis Food Truck in your ‘hood. Probably named for Stanislas, the Polish general who loved to cook when not directing operations. You could try making cromesquis at home, but, it’s complicated. The technique of fusing gelatin to solidify a liquid sealing it in a package, only to melt it later through cooking, requires savvy. Meneau makes, say, a filling of foie gras, truffles, port, and cream, which he envelopes in classic breading; because of the molten middle, the cromesquis are cooled slightly before serving. To really enjoy them they are popped into the mouth whole, the experience is wildly sensual as they burst in the bouche. Mmmmm. “I’ll be making savoury and sweet, the combinations are endless”, predicts Meneau. Educated in France, Mexico and the UK, Meneau is a Constitutional Rights lawyer who worked in downtown LA for O’Melveny & Myers. Returning to Europe he took up a place at Ecole Hotelière, Lausanne, where he met Flora his significant other. On graduating they decided to create their own space in Paris. Last week, the former Auberge de L’Astorg became Crom’Exquis and is already playing to packed houses. Citrus Etoile’s Gilles Epie, says he’s a great chef in the making. “His father’s son”. Gilles Pudlowski of Les Pieds dans Le Plat says: “Pierre’s cooking is du net, du franc, du vif, du sans faute”. Stay tuned for more on the Rolling Stone (pierre) from Vezelay. Crom’ Exquis,22 rue d’Astorg, 8thM: Saint AugustinLunch 28-39€Dinner Average Spend 55€ + wineShut Sat-SunT: 01 42 65 10 74 There’s a new toque at La Villa, near the Arc de Triomphe, he’s Matteo Nastro, talented young Milanese hot-shot with shaved head and fascinating sticky-out ears that look like milk jugs. Excited to be at La Villa, Nastro never stops talking about matters culinary. I haven’t tasted his creations yet, as he just arrived. But his interpretations of the former chef’s dishes leave no doubt that he’s definitely one to watch. Nastro, grins when he talks about the new seasons products, the first St. Jacques, game, fresh pasta.  He’s new in town so has zipped around to see what’s going on chez Ducasse at Benoit, Chez Passard and Gagnaire. A graduate of Carlo Porta Hotel Management School, Milan, Nastro honed his craft in Beirut (“the most exciting city in the world”) at Skybar, Four Seasons, Milan: chez Armani, Nobu and Claudio Sadler, Milan. “My best-friend Caterina Bevicacoua’s doing the patisserie and we’re looking forward to working together. La Villa, with décor by Gilles & Boissier, is certainly a chic place to be. Ladies who do central, Aston-Martin’s and Ferraris looked after by the Armani clad voiturier. Pop in for breakfast, cocktails, lunch, dinner, it’s a scene right out of Point de Vue magazine. La Villa’s been famous for its’ atmosphere since the 18th century when banker Nicolas Beaujon (see the eponymous road opposite) threw wild parties and the walls were covered with works by the likes of Monet, Sisley and Degas. Check out the interior ceiling fresco, near the Grand Piano, sigh! You’ll love La Villa, book to eat outside on the heated terrace, so comfy, you’ll think you’re in Saint Tropez. La Villa, Restaurant, Piano Bar, Lounge37 Avenue de Friedland, 8thM: Etoile Charles de Gaulle,T: 01 82 28 75 08Open: Mon-Thursday 9h-2h00Friday 9h00-4h00Saturday- 16h-4h00Sunday – 16h00-2h00Average spend 60€ Diary Date: Venez Fêter Bacchus! The Fete des Vendanges Montmartre 10-14 October. The Godmother and Godfather 2012 are Anggun, sensual Franco/Indonesion singer representing France at the Eurovision Song Contest (19th May) in Sweden and Jean-Luc Petitrenaud, writer, culinary expert and TV presenter. Why? Because everyone should go at least once in their lifetime. Michelin released its 2013 guide to Great Britain and Ireland a week ahead of schedule after the results were accidentally leaked on its’ website. Whoops! While the guide has not promoted any restaurants to the three-star galaxy, it has awarded three restaurants two stars: Simon Rogan’s L’Enclume in Cartmel, Cumbria; Michael Wignall at the Latymer at Pennyhill Park in Surrey; and Pierre Gagnaire and Mourad Mazouz’s Sketch, Conduit Street, London. Editor, Rebecca Burr said: “These are three equally worthy recipients of our two star award but each restaurant is very different in nature. Michael Wignall’s cooking offers a distinct sense of sophistication; Jean Denis Le Bras at Sketch has a much more ambitious style; and Simon Rogan’s cooking has steadily evolved and is now much more aligned with nature”. There are now four three-Michelin-stars and 20 two-Michelin-starred restaurants in Great Britain and Ireland. In total, 346 restaurants and 138 hotels feature in the 2013 Michelin guide. Price: £15.99 Les Saveurs du Palais is a delightful feel-good movie about Danièle Delpeuch the woman who was personal chef to the late President Franҫois Mitterrand at the Elysée Palace in the 1980’s. Do take The…
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Born in Hampton, Middlesex, UK, Margaret Kemp is a lifestyle journalist, based between London, Paris and the world. Intensive cookery courses at The Cordon Bleu, London, a wedding gift from a very astute ex-husband, gave her the base that would take her travelling (leaving the astute one behind) in search of rare food and wine experiences, such as the vineyards of Thailand, 'gator hunting in South Florida, learning to make eye-watering spicy food in Kerala;pasta making in a tiny Tuscany trattoria. She has contributed to The Guardian, The Financial Times Weekend and FT. How To Spend It.com, The Spectator, Condé Nast Traveller, Food & Travel, and Luxos Magazine. She also advises as consultant to luxury hotels and restaurants. Over the years, Kemp has amassed a faithful following on BonjourParis. If she were a dish she'd be Alain Passard's Millefeuille “Caprice d'Enfant”, as a painting: Manet’s Dejeuner sur l’herbe !