About

"The evolving 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)!

Saturday, October 28, 2017

LE ROCH RESTAURANT & BAR -- Restaurant Review


28 Rue Saint-Roch, 75001 Paris
Tel:  01 70 83 00 00
Metro: Line 1 Tuilleries
website: https://www.leroch-hotel.com/en/

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 (70-80); 4-Bells = Can talk only in raised voices (75-90); BOMB = Too noisy for normal conversation (90+)


3.50 - Star......................................................€€......................................................... 2 - Bell


My good French friend invited me to lunch since we have not caught up since I left for Malaysia 3-weeks earlier. He selected the restaurant, but it was the first time for both of us. He too is very much into food and will soon be embarking in a career in the food industry.

The Restaurant is part of the "Le Roch Hotel & Spa" which is a boutique hotel located in the 1er arrondissement. As you entered it had a really homey comfortable feel. In fact, it was pretty much in full view of the waiting area and part of the hotel reception, but it didn't feel out of place. They had outside seating and a large sunroof with a terrace surrounding the sunroof with tables for al-fresco dining in the warmer months.


We perused the menu, it was a simple menu, but a nice variety. This hotel is also known for their cocktails, but I'm always leery of cocktails in Paris, since they're not known for making good cocktails and have a tendency to be outrageously expensive. Although they did not have "dirty martini" on their menu, I asked our server if they can make it. He said yes, and if I didn't like it I could return it. So I had a dirty martini and my friend had a margarita.

We waited and waited for our cocktails, but they never came, so we just ignored it. Then our server came and took our order, still no drinks. Finally when the entrée was served we got our cocktails, and also not  too much later than that we ordered our wine to go with our meal. So, not a great start. When the drinks arrived, I asked our waiter why there weren't any olives in my martini, he explained that the olives had large pits and could not be skewered, so he gave me a small bowl of them instead. Despite the rough start, I do have to say the dirty martini was one of the best I've had in Paris to date.


ENTRÉE

Slow cooked egg. I love eggs, especially poached eggs. The egg was perfectly poached and sat atop a puree of pumpkin, and for added flavoring had shaved parmesan cheese. And, for texture it also had some croutons. In its simplicity it was a simple good start.











Smoked beef filet carpaccio. My friend had the carpaccio.  Another favorite dish that I love because of its simplicity. However, I had never seen carpaccio served with hazelnuts. It was different, but I kind of liked the added texture. I expected the meat to be pretty smoky and cooked, but it was perfect. It was smoked enough where it didn't cook the meat, but also imparted a subtle smokiness. It was a delicious starter. I thought the only thing they could've added was some lemon wedges.







PLATS

Bonito Fish. Bonito fish is usually known as a flavoring agent such as by-product bonito flakes because of its distinct fish flavor. So the whole fish is not for everyone since it has a strong distinct flavor. I happen to like it. I thought the fish was perfectly cooked and very tasty. It's an oily fish, so that helped with the moisture. I usually think of adding pickled vegetables to rich or very "greasy" food like in BBQ, to cut down on the fat, but not to fish, strangely enough. I did, however, like the pickled cauliflower and broccoli served with the fish. It was a good dish.




Chicken. My friend had the young farm chicken. I took a taste of the chicken, and I do have to say the chicken was perfectly cooked. It was extremely moist and delicious. The accompanying fall vegetables was a nice accompaniment and the different flavored "jus" added a nice flavoring without the added fats. Overall a very good dish.









Wines: We had the house wines, which I'm not really sure what they were, but I had a glass of white and my friend a glass of red.

DESSERTS: We opted not to have desserts, since I, in particular, was sugared out from the day before from my friend's birthday party.


SUMMARY

Overall, I thought it was a very good restaurant, definitely above average. The atmosphere and location was perfect. I actually don't mind slow service because I like long leisurely meals, but the timing of when we got our cocktails and our entrée at the same time was definitely a miss. Therefore, I knocked down a few points from my rating. Otherwise, with the exception of the cocktails mishap, the service that followed was excellent. As for the food, nothing out of the ordinary, but the execution and flavors were very good. Would we go back, ABSOLUTELY. Can't wait to go in warmer weather and be able to dine al-fresco.

With 1 prixe-fix lunch at 31€, an entrée/plat ordered a-la-carte, a bottle of water, 2-cocktails, 2-glasses of wine, and one coffee our bill came to 156€ or 78€.

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