|131 Rue Saint-Dominique|
Bus Line: 80
Metro Line: École-militaire
RER: Pont De L'Alma
RESERVATION: 01 44 18 37 55
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+)
4.5 - Star......................................................€€......................................................... 2 - Bell
The restaurant has been around. In fact, it was created 15-years ago by renowned Chef, Christian Constant, who seems to have a monopoly on that street, Rue Saint-Doiminique, with his other famed restaurants: Les Cocottes, Café Constant, and Le Violon d'Ingres. We heard that there was a new 21-year old Chef at the helm today, her name is Julia Sedefdjian.
To start off, the location is in a wonderful area. It sits in a little court yard along Rue St. Dominique. Although there was plenty of seating, today it appeared that they just kept open one section of the restaurant. Our friend J had been there several times and he mentioned that it had been redesigned. In fact, the kitchen which used to be on the main floor was now below us. The interior was pleasant enough. But like most restaurants in Paris, it was a tight squeeze.
JJ ordered the "Gravlax salmon, yellow and red beetroot carpaccio with walnut oil, and goat cheese cream." It was beautifully plated. As true with gravlax, it's a sweeter version of its cousin the "lox". Plus the salmon pieces were chunkier. Jack loved this dish for the freshness of the beets but as well as the nice rounded flavors of the gravlax. If he had one complaint at all, he said it was a tad salty.
J had the "Carpaccio of bar served on a bed of creamy carrots". You've got the cooked/uncooked, sweet/salty, warm/cold topped with some greens, each element enhanced sensory and taste flavors. It was an excellent dish.
J ordered the Merlu (Hake). When it was presented I thought, wow, that's one long piece of fish. Again, beautifully presented. And, it was served alongside with some grilled endives. The fish had some "Espelette" sprinkled on top which gave a nice little kick. I had a taste of the fish, and I have to say this was one of the best cooked fishes I've ever had. It was so moist and tender, not in the slightest bit overcooked. And, the added espelette gave it a nice heat source that hit you ever so slightly in the end. For some however, the fish might have seemed under cooked.
J and Collette ordered the "Poached pears with vanilla, walnut biscuit, chestnut cream, pear sorbet." There were so many different components to this dessert that despite it looking complicated, the different components complimented each other and did not compete with each other and made it a complete whole dessert. They thought the dessert was excellent. They especially liked the sorbet.
JJ and I shared the "Aged mimolette cheese, pumpkin/orange jam". I love aged cheeses. Aged cheeses have time to develop and actually crystallize salt which to me is an added bonus. If you've never had aged mimolette it's like "aged gouda" we have in the US. So, this dish was a hit for me.
What a wonderful dining experience. All the dishes were nicely composed and beautiful. I've tasted one of the most perfectly cooked fish (hake) ever. And, although their specialty is seafood they know how to cook their meats. I only have 1-minor personal complaint, I don't like seeds in my main dishes. JJ thought the Chef had a heavy hand with the salt, whereas I thought it was perfectly salted. The service was excellent and most are bilingual. And, the price point is excellent for this caliber of restaurant. For 3-entrées, 4-plats, 2-desserts, 2-bottles of wine and 3 coffees our bill came to 199€. Would we come back. in a heartbeat. Chapeau to the new Chef Julia Sedefdjian. So much talent at a ripe old age of 21-years old. She definitely has a promising future!
NOTE: As of February 2016, the 21-year old Chef Julia Sedefdjian was awarded a Michelin star, making her the youngest woman to ever achieve this. CHAPEAU CHEF!
Click on this link to see the article Michelin 2016 win for Chef Julia Sedefdjian