About

"The reluctant Francophile..."

My husband Jack has always wanted to live in Paris and learn French. I thought it would be good for him to achieve his life time dream. Hence, we moved to Paris in 2008. My first year was difficult. I started "missives" to relieve some stress and chronicle my life so friends back in the US could read what I am experiencing. I currently write about my food and travel experiences, which is my passion.

It is definitely a challenge to live here, but each year it gets easier, and quite enjoyable, in large part because I value friendships over locale. I have a love/hate relationship with Paris as do most Parisians, mais La vie est belle (but life is good)!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Restaurant Review -- Paradis

14 Rue de Paradis
75010 Paris
Metro: Gare de L'est
Tel: +33 (01) 45 23 57 58

Rating Standards: 5-Stars = Extraordinary; 4-Stars = Excellent; 3-Stars = Average; 2-Stars = Fair; 1-Star = Poor
€ = Inexpensive: 30€ and under; €€ = Moderate: 31€-49€; €€€ = Expensive: €50 -75; €€€€ = Very Expensive: more than €76 (prices based on minimum 2-courses)
1-Bell = Pleasantly quiet (less than 65 decibels); 2-Bells = Can talk easily (65-70); 3-Bells = Talking normally gets difficult (70-75); 4-Bells = Can talk only in raised voices (75-80); BOMB = Too noisy for normal conversation (80+)

 3.5 - Star......................................................€€......................................................... 4 - Bell

A friend of our is staying around the corner from this restaurant, and suggested we try it. The 10eme arrondissement was/is an immigrant neighborhood filled with many ethnic restaurants such as Indian, Pakistani, African, Turkish, and so on.  However, the area is becoming more gentrified with new interesting shops and restaurants, catering to the young "Bobos" otherwise known as "hipsters."

Interior 
As we entered we noticed it was already quite busy. It was also large by Parisian standards.  They do have an upstairs, and I highly recommend you request the upstairs dining area, because the main dining area was extremely noisy and difficult to have a conversation.

They had quite a nice selection on their menu. There was also a pre-fix lunch menu for 16€ which was a steak tartare atop a salad, a great deal. None of us wanted the tartare so we ordered a-la-carte. There were three of us, and this is what we ordered.

ENTRÉE

Salade de betteraves multicolores, pesto d'oseille, oignons nouveaux, amandes (Colorful salad beetroot, sorrel pesto, onions, almonds).  The dish was beautifully presented and extremely colorful. What stood out about this dish were the ingredients. They were very, very fresh. And, although it was a beet salad, they had nice accompanying vegetables such as carrots and some greens. Overall, an excellent dish.






Tourteau émietté nature, soupe glacée de petits pois carotte pourpre (Crab cake crumbled with cold pea soup purple carrots).  This was a really nice refreshing cold soup. I could easily see this dish as a summer mainstay.  Although the dish was beautifully composed and topped with beets, it was very under-seasoned. So I had to borrow our neighbor's salt, and the salt did make a huge difference.







PLATS

Risotto vert, mozzarella fumée, brocolis, pétales de navets (Green risotto, smoked mozzarella, broccoli, turnips petals).  This dish was not only beautiful but it was delicious. The risotto was flavorful and had a nice al-dente texture, but also very creamy. It also had a nice peppery bite to it, which I enjoyed. The mozzarella was creamy and deliciously smoky, which brought the dish to a whole new level. This was a very, very well composed and thought out dish.





Joue de cochon confite cinq heures, légumes racines, bouillon légèrement epice (Pig cheek confit five, root vegetables, slightly spicy broth).   This was more of a stew. The pork cheeks were nice and tender and the broth was very good. It was accompanied by different root vegetables and radishes, which added a nice zing. It was French comfort food, almost like a "pot-au-feu", but with pork.








DESSERT



Only one of us ordered a dessert. Although she originally wanted a "cafe gourmand",  they didn't have the traditional one, but did have a chocolat milleux cake served over ice cream, which was part of the pre-fix meal. It was a good dessert, but nothing out of the ordinary.










SUMMARY

The neighborhood is dramatically changing, and it's becoming more "bobo" (trendy) for the young. Therefore, more and more trendy restaurants are starting to pop up. I never really think about going to the 10eme for French food and think of it is more of a place I go for Indian food, but I have to say this restaurant is good, definitely above average. Please keep in mind that there are several restaurants named Paradis, and this particular one is at 14 Rue Paradis.

I wish the wait staff would crack a smile every so once in a while, but they all seemed very serious and professional, and yes they were very efficient.  The food was above average with with some minor missteps e.g., the pork being way under-seasoned, but overall I would certainly return if I was in the neighborhood. Be forewarned though, it's an extremely noisy restaurant. So, I would suggest you ask for a table upstairs. For 3-people, 2-glasses of wine, a coke, and a tea our bill came to 103€.


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