"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)!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Kult -- Restaurant Review

3 Rue du Pré aux Clercs
75007 Paris
Tel: 01 42 96 65 43
Website: http://www.restaurant-kult.fr/
(Check website for operating hours)
Bus: 39, 95.  Metro 12 (Rue de Bac), 4 (Saint Germain de Près)

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+)

3.75 - Star......................................................€€ ......................................................... 2.5 - Bell

Came here with some friends for lunch. The restaurant is located in the Saint-Germain-des-Prés area in the Saint Hotel.

It's a great upscale location and the interior of the restaurant is very, very sleek. There were banquettes along the walls with cushions and were actually quite comfortable. I was a bit surprised it wasn't as busy as I had expected it to be.

They did not have a prix-fixe menu, but the prices for lunch seemed quite reasonable.


Tartare de thon albacore/betteraves/sésame. (Yellowfin tuna tartare/beets/sesame).   My friend loves all things beets and this dish did not disappoint. There was a nice proportion of tuna and beets, overall a good dish.

Daurade marinée/clementines/tandoori. (Sea bream marinated / clementines / tandoori). I thought this dish was a really good dish. And, it actually had a little kick to it at the end of each bite. I'm not sure where the "tandoori" came in other than it might've been the spice used to give that little kick. But it pretty much hit all the taste components in your mouth with sour, sweet, and heat.  Overall it was a very delicious composed entrée.

Asperges de couleurs/pesto basilic/lard di colonanata. (Asparagus color / basil pesto / bacon di colonanata).  Asparagus is in season. I liked this dish a lot.  I'm not sure why it's called "color asparagus.  I did get some white and green asparagus, but none-the-less, the asparagus was perfectly cooked and frisée added a nice fresh crunchy component. I happen to like "lardo di colonata" it's basically pork fat used in flavoring, but the accompanying saltiness brought the dish to new level, adding a nice creamy salty component.  Overall this was our favorite entrée.


Steack de thon/quinoa/sauce vierge. (Steak tuna / quinoa / virgin sauce). This was a good simple dish. The waiter did ask my friend how she would like her tuna, and she asked for it rare, which came out as she requested. The tuna was good, but my friend said that the accompanying quinoa was very bland. Personally, I didn't understand the plating, it was very lopsided. And, the rainbow beet seemed like an after thought because it was oddly placed.

Saumon en papillote/choux kale/Huile d’olives kalios.  (Salmon en papillote / cabbage kale / Olive oil kalios).  I liked this dish a lot. Sometimes, the hardest dishes to cook are the simplest. The salmon was neither undercooked nor over overcooked. Had I not known it was cooked   "en papillote" I would've sworn it was cooked "sous vide" since it was so moist and tender. It was not a complicated dish, basically salmon garnished with a few olives and frisée, overall very good.

Risotto aux gambas et lait de coco. (Risotto with prawns and coconut milk).  I have had many risottos in my life-time, but I've never had it cooked in coconut milk, so not only was I anxious to taste it, but I was also suspicious, because growing up we had sweet coconut milk with rice as a dessert, not as a savory component in a dish other than curries.  After tasting it, I am now a believer. Coconut milk can be overwhelming, and sometimes even too sweet. But it was a delicious dish, and the saltiness and taste of the prawns complimented the dish. I give credit to the Chef for thinking outside of the box on this dish. This was our favorite plat.


Avocats/Kiwi a la violette/meringue. (Avocados / Kiwi violet / meringue). In most southeast Asian countries, avocados are used as a dessert rather than in a savory dish such as guacamole. I've seen avocado ice cream and other avocado desserts in San Francisco and other places around the world, but this is the first time I've seen it in Paris. So, I was anxious to taste a little of it. It was a very simple fresh dessert. Not overwhelmingly sweet, and the avocado was a nice compliment to the kiwi, and the textural component of the meringue was a nice touch. So, kudos again for the Chef for once again thinking outside of the box.

Assiette de fromage. (Cheese plate). As I always say, you can't go wrong with cheeses in France, and this was no exception. They had a nice selection of cheeses.

Dessert chocolat kumquat/feuillantine. (Dessert chocolate kumquat / feuillantine). My friend liked this dessert. I wasn't a fan of it. I found the feuillantine, a heavy mousse, too, too dense, heavy and rich. I have a personal bias for lighter desserts. The kumquats were good and the sprinkling of "brick" a sort of crispy phyllo dough added a nice textural element.


The restaurant is in a great location; as for the interior there's nothing that says you're in Paris. In fact, you could be in any restaurant in the US. Where it lacked in Parisian charm, it was a visually sleek and appealing. And, the seats were very comfortable. It had a very "hotel" like atmosphere, but then again it is connected to a hotel.  And, when you entered the restaurant you see shelves of different wines and assume they'd have quite the selection. They do, unfortunately the prices of the wines are not easy on the budget. I never buy expensive wines because it's lost on me, since I'm not a wine connoisseur. So, I did search out for the affordable wines, which they were out of? So we settled for a Vouvray for 32€ a bottle.

Onto the food. Overall I thought the food was very good and well above average. The entrées were very good, with the asparagus our favorite, followed by the daurade, and beets. All were well executed and tasty.  The plat that stood out for us was the risotto with coconut. And, although it was a very simple dish, the coconut milk brought the risotto to a whole new level. My least favorite dish was the tuna and quinoa, which was good, but lacked any real flavor. And, as for the dessert, the Chef once again thought outside of the box and used avocado, kudos to him.   And, the chocolate, although my friend liked it, it's more a personal preference me for, I don't like heavy desserts. Would I go back, absolutely.

With 3-full courses each and 2 bottles of Vouvray our bill came to a total of 198€ or 66€ each for 3-people

UPDATE October 29, 2016:  What a disappointment. It went from being well above average to a disappointing below average. The food and service was very, very schizophrenic. With the exception of the butternut squash soup, everything was bland. But I give them credit for their plating. The staff were nice enough, but their timing was really off. We asked for a particular wine, and they send us a totally different wine. So, finally friends had to ask to see the bottles first. Then they gave a friend a butter-knife to use to cut her steak? What's up with that? And, if that wasn't insult enough, they gave us the wrong glasses for the wines we ordered. White wine glasses for red wine? The saving grace was we kept each other company and commiserated about how bizarre everything was.

As I mentioned before, we all know, restaurants can improve or deteriorate. I will try to update my restaurant reviews, if there are any significant changes.

1 comment :