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Paris Trip Report September 2014

Which Pierre Sang Restaurant did you go? The original or the new one? Anyone have experiences at both? Which one is better?

2 days ago
Torolover in France

Dumpling cafe, Chinatown

I'm not sure since they usually just give me the soup with the noodles without asking me what I want. I know it not's rice noodle or flat noodle. Maybe ask them what noodle they usually put in the soup, but it's a huge bowl for less then $8!

Sep 28, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

What do order at Denise, Jean, Le Cinq, Clamato, Ze Kitchen Gallerie?

You mean I bring my own ziplock bag and stuff it in the ziplock myself? I'm actually serious because I want to order more things on the menu, but don't want to waste the big portions. So I can't ask them to pack my leftovers? I don't want to offend them.

Or another option is I'll have to make two trips there.

Sep 27, 2014
Torolover in France

Dumpling cafe, Chinatown

Yes, my friends from Taiwan all prefer Dumpling Cafe over Gourmet Dumping House. One of my favorites beef noodle soup in Boston is Dumpling Cafe's spicy shredded beef w long horn peppers noodle soup. Must try!

Sep 27, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

What do order at Denise, Jean, Le Cinq, Clamato, Ze Kitchen Gallerie?

Thanks for the recommendation. I will ask the chef to make me whatever he wants!

I heard Chez Denise gives big portions. Would it be rude if I asked them to pack up the leftovers? My wife doesn't eat much, but I want to to try different dishes.

Sep 26, 2014
Torolover in France

What do order at Denise, Jean, Le Cinq, Clamato, Ze Kitchen Gallerie?

Yes, what you guys say totally makes sense. I'm guess I'm used to US "signature" dishes like the pork belly bun at Momofuku.

How about Bistro places like Chez L'ami Jean and Chez Denise? I would think their menu should be pretty similar except for seasonal changes. Any favorite dishes you like at Denise or L'Ami Jean? I'm staying away from Steak Frites because I can get great steak in US. I saw Anthony Bordain order the blanquette de beau on his show.

My dinners- Ze Kitchen Galerie, Chez Denise, Chez L'ami Jean

Does le Cinq (lunch) have any favorite dishes you like?

Sep 26, 2014
Torolover in France

What do order at Denise, Jean, Le Cinq, Clamato, Ze Kitchen Gallerie?

Thanks to you all I've made reservations at some great restaurants! Now, what should I order from each of these restaurants?

Chez Denise
Chez Jean
Ze Kitchen Gallarie
Clamato (no reservations but planning to go)
Le Bat (ditto)
Le Cinq
Hugo Desnoyer

I also made reservations at these places but it's a set menu

David Toutain
le chateaubriand
Gagniere

Thanks everyone for the great tips! I can give tips to anyone coming to Boston! (NO Legal Seafood!)

Sep 26, 2014
Torolover in France

All-time best dessert?

Best desserts I've had in Boston by far are the desserts at Asta. They are better then the ones I've had in Bondir, Espalier, Kirkland Tap, and many other places.

The change their menu all the time, but I would say 3 out of the 4 times I went there, the dessert was simply the best I've had in Boston!

Sep 21, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Paris - further questions

We are thinking about skipping the Eiffel Tower, but want a place to have a great view of the Eiffel Tower. What is the name of this place your recommend? Or anything places for great views of Eiffel Tower with decent food?

Sep 19, 2014
Torolover in France

Price for Gagnaire?

Thanks for the tips everyone! I made reservations at Gagnaire and they said the tasting is 290 without drinks so not too bad!

Gagnaire will actually be my last meal after a 14 day trip. You think it's OK for the best to be last? or will my taste buds be tired from eating too much good food for 13 days?

Another option is I can try to make reservations on the second day or third day of my trip.

Thanks!

Sep 17, 2014
Torolover in France

Price for Gagnaire?

On Michelin Guide for Savoy they wrote 330-360, but on Savoy's website the tasting menu is 390-490. Curious did Savoy increase their prices recently? I mean 490 and 360 is a huge difference!

Sep 17, 2014
Torolover in France

Price for Gagnaire?

I can't find the price for Gagnaire on their website. I'm trying to decide between Savoy and Gagnaire. I didn't realize Savoy for tasting is 390, 420, or 490 Has it always been this high? If Gagnaire is 300 I will I probably will go with Gagnaire.

Anyone know the latest price for Gagnaire? Or any other suggestions for 300 or so? I've always wanted to go to a 3 michelin, but I'm not bound to it.

Thanks!

Sep 16, 2014
Torolover in France

Great lunches but also not too far from Tourist attractions?

I've been doing a lot of research for good lunches in Paris. This will be my first time in Paris so I will be hitting all the Tourist attractions. I know that Tourist spots usually don't have great lunches, but are there some you recommend?

I'm hoping to have a quick light lunch and then be able to walk around some nice "touristy" areas.

This is a list I made, but I don't know if their location is convenient for the tourist spots. Any other suggestions?

David Toutain
Le Servan
Bat
Pierre Sang
Chez Jean
Chez Denise
Bones
Clamato

Sep 16, 2014
Torolover in France

one pick for a 3 michelin star restaurant?

Thanks for the tips everyone! I really appreciate it! I think I will narrow it down to Gaganire and Savoy. Souphie, I'm planning Le Cinq for Sunday lunch. Will this be the regular Lunch menu or is it a Brunch Menu? Is the quality still good on a Sunday? In the States often Sunday lunches are dinners are not as good because it's the chefs day off and there are no deliveries on Sundays. Thanks!

Sep 16, 2014
Torolover in France

one pick for a 3 michelin star restaurant?

I will be there from Oct 1 to Oct 14 so I'm thinking of making reservations Oct 11 or 12th

How does Guy Savoy compare to Arpege? I read that Aprege is more vegetable based, but worried how good the veggies are in mid Oct?

I'm trying to get a mix of modern/classic French. These are other places I'm trying to book, but want to try one 3 star michelin restaurant.

Any other suggestions would be welcome!

ze kitchen galarie
Frenchie
pierre sang
chez jean
chez denise
le bat lunch
le servan lunch
Le Cinq lunch

Sep 15, 2014
Torolover in France

one pick for a 3 michelin star restaurant?

If you have to pick one 3 michelin restaurant in Paris in 2 weeks, which one would it be? L'astrance wouldn't work for me because I need to be able to make reservations in 2 weeks.

Thanks!

Sep 15, 2014
Torolover in France

Best dishes at Sarma?

Finally got reservations to Sarma tomorrow! What are your favorite dishes there?

Jun 11, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Ramen Epiphany at East by Northeast 2/12/14

Is the soup rich? Philip in his website describes the broth, "in the style of tonkotsu, made with plenty of pork bones and pork fat, cooked until it is deep rich and thick... tempered with a lightly gingered fish fumet."

So I was expecting the soup to be Tonkotsu style rich or at least close to it since it's tempered with fish fumet.

What is Tonkotsu style? Tonkotsu broth is usually boiled for over 8 hours to convert the collagen into gelatin so the soup is deep, rich, and thick. His soup didn't taste like it was boiled for over 8 hours. If his soup was really rich from the gelatin conversion(not from fat) the whole soup would be solid when chilled, not just having a layer of fat on top of the soup.

I understand deep, rich and thick is relative, but for me it is the lightest broth of all the Ramen places I have tried in Boston and NY.

Regardless if the broth is supposed to be rich or light, at the end of the day, the broth just didn't do it for me. The sourness of the soup was a little off putting, but I must say there is potential as the other components were great.

I think people should try his Ramen and am curious what other CH's think!

Ramen Epiphany at East by Northeast 2/12/14

Let the Ramen debate begin! I also had the Ramen last night and must say I was disappointed.

First of all the Ramen was the smallest bowl of Ramen I have ever seen. It was literally half or smaller of what other Ramen places serve. I get that it's "high end" Ramen, but even high end Burgers and Pizza are regular size or only slightly smaller. Imagine paying $18 for the famous burger at Craigie on Main, but Tony Maws makes it a slider size. That's what I felt like.

Philp's Ramen is not traditional Ramen as disclosed on his website and I'm fine with that. Each component was well made. I loved the smooth egg, I appreciate the homemade noodles, I could taste the smokiness of the pork, and I loved the Monkfish Liver Butter.

The problem, which is the most important aspect of Ramen, is the soup!!

His website describes the soup as "in the style of tonkotsu, made with plenty of pork bones and pork fat, cooked until it is deep, thick and rich... tempered with a lightly gingered fish fumet."

I didn't get this flavor at all. I did not taste the rich flavor of roasted pork bones boiling for 9 hours, or get any of the gelatin richness in my mouth. I did not taste any of the complexity of a good broth coming from veggies or secret ingredients. The soup was very light and not rich at all. In fact it had a slight sourness to it which I didn't find appealing. I think it was coming from the pickles in the soup.

Perhaps he's trying to make a more sophisticated lighter double stock Ramen soup, like Ivan Ramen in NYC, but to me Philip's soup doesn't work.

I hope he can tweak his soup, because the other components are good, especially the monkfish liver butter.

And he needs to work on the size..I mean high end ramen places in NYC and Japan have bigger bowls!

Would any Boston restaurants get any Michelin stars?

I have been to Danji in NY which has 1 star and is proof you don't need great service, wine program, or even great chairs. You share a long table with other diners and you sit on a stool!

The Korean food is very good, but it's not the same level as E'spalier or Menton. Hard to compare because average check at Danji is only $38.

If Danji can get 1 star, E'spalier and Menton for sure would get 1 star. In fact I would say Toro is as good as Danji, so Toro should get 1 star too!

Oct 30, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Abe & Louie's

I had a great 22 ounce delmonico and kona dry aged sirloin at Capital Grille a couple weeks ago.

We ordered 3 steaks for 5 people and they served it to us family style and cut it up for us. It was a nice touch on their part.

Highly recommended.

Oct 30, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Abe & Louie's

I don't go to steakhouses often, but to defend them, I am usually disappointed when I order a steak from a Bistro or even a place like Hungry Mother, Ten Tables, or other smaller chef owned restaurants. After tasting the steak, I always say, "man, I should have went to Grill 23 or Capital grill for the Ribeye, and it's the same price"

Most restaurants only give you 6 or 8 ounce portion of a cheap cut like bavette or hanger and charge you $30. So it's not more expensive to eat at Grill 23, where you can get a a 18 ounce 100 day dry aged prime ribeye for $51! I always split the steak half with my wife since a 9 ounce portion is plenty. The steak only cost me $26 and is much better quality and bigger then the Bistros.

So if you want steak, go to a steakhouse and split the steak in half instead of ordering from a bistro!

Oct 30, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Hey, Where's our Team Spirit? Ribelle Gets FOUR STARS!!****

In response to Bostonfoodz,

First of all South End rents are much higher then Brookline, so I feel we should already be getting a slight discount eating in Brookline.

Just because Tim's food is better, doesn't mean he should charge more then Lynch's restaurants. Lynch has a big name in Boston, and a lot of people(not me) are willing to pay a premium for her name, not necessarily for the quality of food. Price is determined what the market will bear.

This is true with all established "celebrity" chefs. People go and pay a premium to eat at Ming Tsai's restaurant too. I don't think Tim has that name power yet, especially in Brookline.

I don't go to Lynch's restaurants, not because they are bad, but I prefer the food AND value of Toro, Strip Ts, Salts, Bondir, etc..

I'm hoping Ribelle can be one of these that offer great food and value, and doesn't turn into a "Lynch"

Oct 27, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Hey, Where's our Team Spirit? Ribelle Gets FOUR STARS!!****

C'mon guys you need to check prices more carefully. Butcher Shop and Sportello have almost identical appetizer prices and pasta prices as Ribelle!!

Ribelle is NOT in Boston, and shouldn't be the same price as Lynch with all her accolades!

.

Oct 26, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Hey, Where's our Team Spirit? Ribelle Gets FOUR STARS!!****

Funny how we were just talking about great Ribelle could be, even though it needed to iron out its kinks, and now it gets a perfect 4 star review! I went again after the Globe review and tried about 8 dishes. I still feel the same as I did in my last post. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/920402

Some of the dishes were spectacular, but 2 or 3 were just OK. For a 4 star restaurant, people now are expecting EVERY dish to be a 9 or 10, not having some dishes just a 7.

Devra pointed out some flaws, and I hope that encourages them to get rid of the dishes that don't work and keep pushing the ones that do. I also hope the 4 star review doesn't get to their heads and they decide to push the prices up.

I'm a big fan, and hoping for the best.

Oct 26, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Anyone else think ribelle (brookline)?is trying too hard?

OK, so maybe not quite at the same level at Momofuku, but I'm sure the chefs are aiming to be the best they can in Boston. I'm sure they feel they can be better or just as good as Toro, Coppa, Oleana, and Bondir.

Don't you feel the price point for appetizers at Ribelle are too high to experiment with and have some fall a little flat? Again the ones that work show their potential.

When Strip T's opened almost all of their apps were spot on, and at less then $8 or $9 at the time, not a big deal, if it didn't work.

Oct 15, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Anyone else think ribelle (brookline)?is trying too hard?

I love Strip Ts' and Ribelle, but the problem I have is when they keep changing their menu. When the dishes work, it's fantastic, but often I wish they would just keep it on the menu, (please bring back the fried cauliflower and rainbow trout!!) I know they want to keep things interesting and perhaps the chefs get bored, but I would say half the time I try something new on the menu, I'm slightly disappointed. Not to say it's bad per se, but THEIR GOOD DISHES ARE SO GOOD, IT SETS A CERTAIN STANDARD.

My complaint with Ribelle, is at the price point for their appetizers, every appetizer dish needs to be spot on. Pastas are awesome and priced right, but their appetizers are priced higher then Toro and Oleana!! Some of these appetizers are good, but not all keep to the high standard they set,(Toro's version of sweetbreads for example are still better). If they want to keep experimenting, perhaps they should lower the prices like they did at Strip T's when they first opened, and then raise them when the dishes become a signature and established. This way expectations from customers won't be so high because of the price. Toro and Oleana keep the same appetizers for a reason, even though they do have specials.

People are expecting a lot from Ribelle, and I hope they can work out their kinks. I'm a huge fan of both Strip T's and Ribelle, and really hope they can be our versions of the "Momofuku" empire in Boston.

Oct 15, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Inaka, Allston

When I was there they mentioned they have two kinds of noodles and we can pick one. One is thin and soft, and one is thicker and al dente. We picked the thicker one, although it was still pretty thin.

I had the spicy miso ramen which I liked better then Pikaichi and Sapporo ramen.

Aug 21, 2013
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

in search of the best pancakes in the Boston area

Really, the best pancakes are at Craigie on Main!! There is no question about it! Go try and tell me what you think!

Dec 08, 2012
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

in search of the best pancakes in the Boston area

Then why is it people pay $22 for pasta that you can also make home for 75 cents? Sometimes when you have a great meal, and it's under $20, it's worth it!!

Nov 28, 2012
Torolover in Greater Boston Area