Laidback's Profile

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Budget dining in Paris?

4 of us went to Le Timgad last Wed. and had quite a feast which included a very good couscous.

Oct 26, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris -- staying in the 9th for two weeks November

Congratulations on your choices, obviously you have done your home work. The 9th is my home base for a few months each year and I heartily endorse my neighbor and friend , Parigi's advice.

A few additional comments expressing my opinions; if you like Pantruche you will like Caillebotte, same owners. I do like the food but no longer frequent either one because of the elbow to elbow seating and intolerable noise level.

I suggest you order Basque specialities at Cantine de la Cigale as we ordered mixed items and were disappointed in the non-Basque plates.

The Bouclier de Bacchus offers wine off the shelf to C.O.P. with no corkage fee and the owner, Philippe, is probably as nice a guy as we have met anywhere. Not many weeks have gone by that we haven't stopped by for an assiette de charcuterie and a new bottle that he recommends.

We strongly endorse Bistro de la Bruyère, it is currently our favorite in the quartier. Two additional recommendations for a touch more expensive restaurants would be Les Premices and Le Petrelle.

You have chosen a great neighborhood.

Oct 24, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris -- staying in the 9th for two weeks November

Congratulations on your choices, obviously you have done your home work. The 9th is my home base for a few months each year and I heartily endorse my neighbor and friend , Parigi's, advice.

A few additional comments expressing my opinions; if you like Pantruche you will like Caillebotte, same owners. I do like the food but no longer frequent either one because of the elbow to elbow seating and intolerable noise level.

I suggest you order Basque specialities at Cantine de la Cigale as we ordered mixed items and were disappointed in the non-Basque plates.

The Bouclier de Bacchus offers wine off the shelf to C.O.P. with no corkage fee and the owner, Philippe, is probably as nice a guy as we have met anywhere. Not many weeks have gone by that we haven't stopped by for an assiette de charcuterie and a new bottle that he recommends.

We strongly endorse Bistro de la Bruyère, it is currently our favorite in the quartier. Two additional recommendations for a touch more expensive restaurants would be Les Premices and Le Petrelle.

You have chosen a great neighborhood.

Oct 24, 2014
Laidback in France

Budget dining in Paris?

Could we get the schedule when this may be re broadcast?

Oct 23, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris from mid-September to mid-October!

To me, this was your most helpful review. Thanks for telling it just as you experienced it.

Oct 21, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris: ramen? pho? tofu stew? Or any other amazing soup! (for tonight!)

I wouldn't pretend to know beans about Asian soups but would follow Parigi anywhere. However Ms. L. feels that the onion soup at La Rotonde is a decent example of a dying classic.

Oct 21, 2014
Laidback in France

Budget dining in Paris?

Another decent place for a lunch in your price range is "Ratapoil" on the border of the 9th&10th arrondissements. I think the carte pictured explains the deal.

Do you need more?

Oct 21, 2014
Laidback in France

Budget dining in Paris?

There are several places where you can have a better than decent lunch at your price point. One is "Will" located close to the Marché d' Aligre. Either 2 small appetizers + a main dish or a main + dessert for €19. Add a glass of wine and you are right on target.
Look carefully at the upper right of the photo and you hopefully can read about the formula dejeuner.

Oct 21, 2014
Laidback in France

Neige d'Eté?

Three of us did have lunch there last week and were wowed. This part of the 15th gets few tourists but is easy to get to by metro or bus (#80). The exterior is an attractive grey but the name is in very small letters, so pay attention to the address. The interior has a clean, modern look with widely separated, cushy seating and a large, immaculate kitchen where no less than 5 intensely concentrating personnel were working with a quiet precision which, it seems to me, is common in higher end Japanese kitchens. The entire staff is Japanese but the cuisine is decidedly French using top quality ingredients; Bertin for vegetables and beef from Metzger who supplies places like Plaza Athenée, Akrame, and Georges Blanc.

The lunch menu is no choice; amuse bouche, entrée, main course, dessert and mignardises, all for €35. There is a possibility of wine pairings which we chose based on the reputation of the sommelier. You are asked when calling for reservations and again when arriving if you have any dis-likes or allergies.

Our amuse bouche was a fine salmon tartar served in a bowl of watercress purée, topped with caviar...my bouche was quite amused. The entrée was encornet pôelé with barley containing mussels and girolles with one perfect langoustine.

The main course was a superb onglet of black angus with the jus served alongside and a medley of potatoes and mushrooms. this Olivier Metzger doesn't have to take a back seat to the very good Desnoyer or Le Bourdonnec, even though he is not quite as well known. The dessert was called Toute Pêche...very light, but bursting with peach flavor.

On Le Vénérable's rating scale I would give it an 8+

Good luck on the photos!

Oct 19, 2014
Laidback in France

8 days near Le Marche D'Aligre

I visit Jean-François Renard's quirky "Tintilou" every visit. This place is not for everyone as he is very inventive and you almost never see a repeat dish. The prices are more than reasonable for this level of cooking. We just celebrated our 45th anniversary there Saturday night and even though Sat. Nights are not the time to necessarily receive a restaurants most careful attention (the calendar doesn't take your consideration under advisement), we were treated as attentively as if it was a nonrushed Tues. lunch.

Just as an example of his unusual dishes, we were served something on the "Menu Surprise" called a pissaladière which was anything but...a slice of eggplant topped with a disk of pastry, topped with a slice of lightly crisped, seasoned boudin noir which in turn was topped with bite size chunks of lobster. Ms L., who normally avoids boudin noir as if it were andouillette, gobbled it down with pleasure.

We tend to have become more traditional in our taste with age, but this chef just hits all the right notes and keeps us coming back for his decidedly non-traditional cuisine and eclectic tableware and serving pieces; always a unique experience.

Oct 08, 2014
Laidback in France
1

Mirazur in Menton

A. Lobrano stated unequivocally that Mirazur is the best restaurant on the Côte d'Azur. Normally I shrug at "best" because of the implication that one has studiously tried everything in the category but my recent 2 week stay between Antibes and Menton could only make me add respect to that which I already had for M. Lobrano.

The site is superb with a view over Menton and the Mediterranean Sea from the whole restaurant, the décor is pleasing with space between tables, the staff is well informed and pleasant and the cuisine worthy of its 2 stars. We chose one of the lower end (€70)lunch menus and the array of dazzling small plates began. The pacing was just right, we never felt rushed nor forgotten. Among our favorites were tempura-ed salicorne, a diaphanous crab cannelloni, a tomato-fig-burrata granite, artfully sliced smoked calamari with artichoke, slow-cooked lamb with figs, a filet of pomfret, which I think we call pompano in Florida, served with mussels and a delicious sauce. There were others including "light" desserts, if indeed chocolate can be deemed light. The cheese tray was a thing of beauty (not included on the menu)and we left absolutely sated, palatally and visually.

Oct 08, 2014
Laidback in France
1

Neige d'Eté?

3 of us are having lunch there next week, so if no one reports back before then, I will.

Oct 06, 2014
Laidback in France

Caius

Paula we leave on Nov. 1.

Oct 02, 2014
Laidback in France

Caius

I don't know why we don't frequent this excellent restaurant more often. Yesterday was only the 4th time we have dined there since it opened and each time we come away thinking, Wow, we must come back. Perhaps the location is not on our usual routes except when we get our haircut near by, but neither is L'Assiette, Court Bouillon, etc. Anyway, we did and it was just as good as ever. The products are top-notch, veal from the Correze, vegetables from Annie Bertin, free range poultry, spices from exotic locales, bread approaching perfection and the appearance is pleasing; blond wood paneling, attractive, comfortable seating and the aroma of the spices which are always on display titillate the palate.

There are a handful of choices on the 3 course menu for €42 which have been different on each of our visits. Today we had starters of velouté of yellow chanterelles with white Paimpol beans and gambas "Cajun" with grated fennel and soy.

Our mains were a large ravioli of beef cheeks, generously served in a cocotte with shiitake mushrooms swimming in a bouillon of pied de veau, then a poitrine de Cochon poached, caramelized and also served with whole "bio" carrots in a cocotte with more than a dozen baby clams. One of the best renditions ever, made more interesting by the spices, most noticeably cinnamon, which was better than it sounded. Desserts were fine but not as interesting.

Sep 30, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris In Early October

Here is the cassoulet from l'Assiette last night...I almost was able to finish it.

Sep 12, 2014
Laidback in France

Paris In Early October

Let me offer recent experiences relating to a couple of your requests. I enjoy about one good brasserie experience a month and my favorite is La Rotonde on Blvd. Montparnasse, followed by Le Stella on Ave. Victor Hugo, then, especially for seafood, Le Garnier, across from Gare St. Lazare.

I owe part of my considerable girth to a weakness for cassoulet, and even though I think of it as a winter dish, I succumbed just last night to a very good version at L'Assiette on Rue du Chateau. In the past I have enjoyed Christian Constant's version at Le Violon d'Ingres as well as at Au Trou Gascon in the 12th.

Sep 12, 2014
Laidback in France

Recommendation for anniversary dinner in Paris

My default restaurant for special occasions is La Grande Cascade.

Jul 12, 2014
Laidback in France
2

Cold Weather Dishes?

Hard to improve on what you have mentioned, but one of my favorites is Pascal Guillaumin's chou farci at Le Florimond. It is seasoned pork wrapped in cabbage leaves and served piping hot in a casserole with delicious gravy.

Another great winter dish , baeckeoffe, comes from the Alsace but as of yet I haven't found an exemplary version in Paris. Perhaps some of our heartier trenchermen(people) on Chowhound might be able to help.

Jun 16, 2014
Laidback in France

What food/restaurants do you crave when not in Paris?

For years my answer was bread, cheese and foie gras but now I have to be more specific as things have become more available where I live, so now it is bread from Landemaine on Rue des Martyrs, Vacherin Mont d'Or and St. Marcellin cheeses. I also miss Philippe with his big smile, friendly wine advice and affordable prices at Le Bouclier de Bacchus.

Jun 16, 2014
Laidback in France

VegasGourmet suggested we start a running list of the JT food scale, a solid 5.5 of comfort food that is both unique to Paris as well as comforting.

John I am one of the few who seem to enjoy your attempt at numerical ratings and understand many of the fore-mentioned shortfalls of trying to do what you so heroically continue to attempt. Through the years I have learned to interpret your ratings and calibrate them in a manner that is useful to me...are they infallible, of course not but you are referred to as the "venerable" not the pope. Please just keep soldiering on.

Jun 09, 2014
Laidback in France
1

Escargot

Thanks for sharing your expertise on a subject which I have never been able to get much consensus.

Jun 04, 2014
Laidback in France

July Paris trip and Loire Valley report

Thanks to a strong recommendation from John Talbott we tried Kigawa and were very impressed, probably our best new find this trip... I believe they are open on Sunday.

Jun 03, 2014
Laidback in France

Le Court Bouillon

Long time Chow Hound members may recall that I have mentioned this place a few times when people ask for traditional cuisine, but after biannual trips since 2009 it is time to write it up.

The location at the corner of Rue du Theatre and Georges Citerne in the 15th is not exactly a tourist magnet so you must be purpose driven to run across it; we only discovered it when we rented an apt. across the street in 2009 shortly after it opened.

Traditional cuisine in this case means in the vein of Taillevent and Plaza Athénée where the chef/owner worked for over a decade. The tables are nicely dressed, the decor is soothing with nice lighting and artwork and no intrusive music...I know, I know get to the food. Our favorite starters are a classic Ravioles de Royans in a rich cheese sauce, bouchées de langoustine in an orange sauce, and the ravigote of crab.

My favorite main is the generous and top quality côte de boeuf when someone is willing to share, as it is for two. Ms. L. is not a beef maniac so she usually gets the filet d'agneau or we get the Côte de veau for two.

This is all under "The Venerable's"category of boring food but if perchance you get over-dosed with David Toutain (no chance), Inaki or Pierre and crave traditional cuisine in a nice setting with approachable prices you could do worse.

May 31, 2014
Laidback in France
1

A long lunch in the 2nd

Since you leave us a bit of latitude between your 2 choices, perhaps Claude Colliot might fit your criteria and it is only about a 2 min walk from the Pompidou.

May 30, 2014
Laidback in France

Neva cuisine - review

Unfortunately I don't know how to do a Bronx cheer on the internet, Ms Repetto.

May 27, 2014
Laidback in France

Neva cuisine - review

What great photos. Coincidentally, 3 of us dined with Mme Gonzales last night and the octopus dish was one of the best of our 2 month stay, visually a delight, with the juxtaposition of textures and flavors, the cucumber opposite the avocado with the octopus playing harmony. We eat here at least once each trip since she opened and one of our group usually gets the crousti-fondant ris de veau and last night was no exception. Perhaps she read your post because it had the same crispy exterior and unctuous interior that keeps bringing me back. Her pastry chef is a master, I hope he will stay put; as you undoubtedly know they were together at La Grande Cascade and I think their combination is symmetry of a high order for a restaurant at this price level.

Thanks for the eloquent in both languages review.

May 27, 2014
Laidback in France

Celebration in Paris

I think Restaurant David Toutain meets your criteria.

May 21, 2014
Laidback in France

On reserving multiple tables

I think this subject needs to be broached frequently. Someone posted one day ago that they had booked two places at the same time.

Maybe some are just selfish, uncaring, rude, but I think many are just not thinking of how unfair this practice is to the restaurant.

May 21, 2014
Laidback in France

Septime or David Toutain for a vegetarian?

Flip a coin, both are very good. I would probably go with Toutain but that may be because we were just there. The spacing and decor is also a bit nicer.

May 21, 2014
Laidback in France

What good Paris restaurants don't take reservations? Please add to:

Café Richer, Café Constant, Les Cocottes come to mind.

May 20, 2014
Laidback in France