“Food should be fun.” –Thomas Keller
Plate Expectations! Where to eat now in Paris? Here are some addresses I recommend this month.
A former greasy spoon burger joint off the Champs Elysées is now a chic, 35-seat restaurant, a dream come true for the talented, passionate Julien Boscus.
He traveled the world, worked in London, Seoul, with Pierre Gagnaire, more recently at Carole Colin and Denis Jamet’s Les Climats in the 7th. “Now I’m here,” he grins, proudly surveying Origines with its bright, modern décor by architect Caroline Tissier and welcoming vibes.
There’s an amusing amuse bouche of veal tongue (vitello tonnato), romanesco flower and Cantal cheese– but “everything changes every ten minutes!” Boscus warns.
Starters today are Duck Foie Gras, peppery grains de Paradis, Piedmont hazelnuts and Solliès figs – cut with Pear William and quince juice (€28); Baie de Somme scallops, avocado, lemon guacamole include passion fruit (€27); or Boscus’ spin on tradi fricasée of cèpes (wild mushrooms) – coffee Iapar (Malay) mousseline (€26)
Mains may be game (red partridge/grouse); Yeu Island grilled/poached sea-bream, mousseline of smoked artichoke, with Utah Beach cockles and seaweed butter (€34); Pan roast Basque pink veal, sweet Cévennes mushrooms (€36); or rich, smooth Hare de Beauce à la Royale – style Antonin Carême – ravioli, purée of héliantis and red beetroot (€48). Sommelèire Olivia Thalgott suggests Domaine du Pas d’Escalette AOP Terrasses du Larzac— also lovely with cheese from Terroirs d’Avenir (€16) and Jean-Luc Poujauran’s beautiful breads.
To finish, young pastry chef Laura Vervoort (ex-Robouchon) gathers pears from Yannick Colombié, poaches them in Lot Valley caramel honey, and adds pear sorbet/ginger (€16). And maybe there’s cardamon autumn cheesecake with chestnut ice cream.
“Respect the products – the rest comes naturally,” reflects Boscus.
6 rue de Ponthieu, 8th
Metro: Franklin D Roosevelt,
Tel: +33 (0)9 86 41 63 04
Closed Saturday & Sunday
The lovely church of Notre Dame de L’Assomption (1670) is across the cobblestones from Huîtres & Saumons. “Do you pop in to mass and pray for good products and lots of bookings?” I ask Victor Seisson-Dirat and Timothée Berthet who recently launched this charming neo-tradi fish and seafood address on the long narrow rue de l’Assomption in the Passy neighborhood. “Well we don’t have a lot of time at present,” they laugh. “But the clergy have been over and blessed this house!” Good beginnings, eh!?
H & S, where the Atlantic is showcased on artisan designer dishes, takes inspiration from Victor’s happy holidays on Cap Ferret, the chic Côte d’Argent seaside town famous for its ostreicole (oyster farming), lighthouse, and Ocean Beach lifestyle.
“Everything can be ordered to go”, says Victor. “We prepare it so you can just pop it in the oven and say, “of course I made it!” Or, consider the seasonal bounty of Plateaux (from about €33-€53 per person), perfect for Christmas.
What’s on the menu?
Oeuf Parfait/Cauliflower/Smoked Eel; Crab tartare/Smoked Salmon/Remoulade Granny Smith; Taramas nature, crab, sea-urchin or truffles; Seaweed tartare and house baked seaweed bread. Mains include signature Salmon Tartar; Flash fried scallops/Jerusalem artichokes and girolles mushrooms; Slow cooked beef stew; Fish of the day. For dessert, try the warm, molten chocolate cake, topped with Chantilly cream.
Somm Guillaume Darblay’s wine card is vibrant. We tasted Lieutenant de Sigalas 2016 white (glass €8.90, bottle €34) and Michel Moine’s aromatic Vin de Rhubarbe, Blanc de Vosges 2014 (€45).
Lunch & Dinner €24.90-€29.90. Starters (to share or not) from €13.50-€20. Mains are priced between €23-€44. Desserts €8.50. Try a selection of caviars Baeri from Aquitaine for €60-€2,000.
17, rue de l’Annonciation, 16th
Metro: La Muette
Tel: +33 (0)1 42 88 19 64
Closed Sunday-Monday (gone fishing) & Christmas day
How divine seated on the heated terrace opposite the fabled Hotel La Louisiane, built in 1823 by a Napoleon army officer who made his fortune trading animal skins in Louisiana. It was home to Jean-Paul Sartre (room 10) and Simone de Beauvoir (room 68) who, by day, scribbled their works in the nearby Cafe de Flore and partied balmy left-bank nights away. Today they’d just have to pop across the rue to Gilberte, recently opened by Michel Boiron and Olivier Flottes in place of the big Boucherie/Charcuterie Claude & Cie.
There’s something for everyone on the deliciously curated menu. Think Croque Monsieur with turkey (€15), signature pâté en croute (€17), egg Mayo (€9), scrambled eggs with truffles (€25), Salads – Veggie (€19), Caesar (€21), Gratin Germanopratin +€6, Mac’Cheese + €6, Aquitaine Beef tartar (€21). And there’s 50 shades of chicken from the rôtisserie (€19-€75). Cheese by Mme Barthélémy (about €10) and desserts include a wicked French Toast (€11).
As well as cocktails and mocktails (€12) – by the glass – about €14 for a rich Patrimonio Corse. The wine wall has 300 choices (we chose St. Joseph-Lieu Dit – 2013 from Monsieur Guigal €72).
Pop in for Roast chicken – Wing or Thigh (you choose) – €19
A La Carte about €40 + wine
79 rue de Seine, 6th
Tel: +33 (0)1 42 03 94 59
“Galettes are so French,” says Yukino my Japanese friend. “I first tasted them at Breizh Café, Tokyo – it opened in 1996,” she recalls. “Now there’s lots of them.”
We’re seated opposite the spotless steel and tile open kitchen in the just opened Paul Bert Breizh Café and grocery space. (This is a fabulous foodie village scene, near the Bastille; Lignac/Unino/Bistro Paul Bert are near neighbors.)
We tuck into galettes made with ground sarrasin (buckwheat), a delicious nutty flavor. I’ve got scallops and seaweed, Yukino’s got truffled ham, also noting, for next time, maki-style galette rolls, filled with tempting combos of onion confit and sliced sausage; Guémené andouille and Comté cheese; langoustines/zucchini; avocado, tofu, buckwheat, mixed greens and a sesame dressing.
We go all the way and order dessert crêpes: Bordier butter and yuzu; buckwheat honey, buckwheat soufflé and buckwheat ice cream; kinako powder, kuromitsu and matcha ice cream…. Bliss!
There’s a bromance going on between Bertrand Larcher, Breizh Café founder and butter king of France Jean-Yves Bordier. If you’re lucky and Bordier’s in town, he’ll be wacking his beau Breton bio butters into shape on the bar counter dubbed “La Cérémonie du Beurre.” Bordier butter, made with ground sarrasin, is used in everything.
This non-gluten, organic, healthy food is beautifully presented by lovely wait staff dressed in Jean-Paul Gaultier style Breton stripe T’s.
Signatures of Breizh are organic Breton ciders (there’s 300 varieties of apples to choose from, who knew?) to be “tasted” like a great wine or champagne and expertly selected by Carine, the Breton sommelier.
“The Japanese use sarrasin, but in a different way than the French. My concept with Breizh is to build a bridge between the two countries which are dear to my heart,” says Bertrand Larcher. Yukino nods approval……
PS. Want to learn the tricks of the trade? Try the crepe-making atelier.
Eat in or to go. Average spend from about €10.50-€25
23 rue Paul Bert, 11th
Metro: Faideherbe Chaligny
Open 7/7 Terrace
Tel: +33 (0)1 42 78 27 49