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Paris, 1st arr.

Within 5-6 blocks there's Bistro Volnay, sister restaurant Les Jalles, Pinxo....

If you can walk a little further, try Regalade St. Honore. They're always packed so call ahead. Got lucky once and walked in for lunch.
123 Rue Saint-Honoré 75001 Paris, France
+33 1 42 21 92 40

Use Paris by Mouth map here and zoom into your area for further recs:
http://parisbymouth.com/our-map-of-pa...

Apr 25, 2013
jackkirby in France

ES, Paris 7th - anyone been?

The chef's CV (from Pudlowski's blog) looks pretty amazing. 45euro lunch. Anyone been? Looking forward to Talbott's review.

http://www.lefooding.com/node.php?art...

http://www.gillespudlowski.com/70757/...

Apr 25, 2013
jackkirby in France

Shan Gout and yam'Tcha

Thanks for the comprehensive list! By the way, what did you have at yam'Tcha? Was it at least good?

And yes, the famous Chen. True, about the adaptation comment. I think that's why my Beijing friend didn't enjoy the place when she visited a few years back, calling it a cheap imitation. That automatically threw Tricotin and Tang out the window. Funny thing is Shan Gout's chef is apparently from Chen. Funnier still if we finally decide on Shan Gout, and she actually likes the food more now that the chef's left all the fancy stuff behind to whip up simple Sichuan.

May 06, 2009
jackkirby in France

Pig Out in Tokyo

I visit Tokyo here and then but normally for a night and head back out again the next morning. Got lucky this time with meetings spread out over a few days.

I visit HK often too but still crave Chinese in Tokyo. It's how the Japanese playfully re-engineer the cuisine to fit their taste buds - like they with with alot of other foods: Italian, French, etc... It may look similar but it has its own distinctive flavour - something you can't find anywhere else in the world.

May 06, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Ah, they moved from Yoyogi. Thanks for the heads up. Love how they give you the option to fill a side of the bun with one filling and the other side with another.

May 06, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Shan Gout and yam'Tcha

Yeah, me too, but my Chinese friend went over-the-top. Her schedule's been chock-full - day and night - of hard to book French restaurants (L'Ami, Meurice, Comptoir, etc...). Looking for a break, she requested Chinese on Friday. Thought yam'Tcha might fit the bill and unique enough that it's not something that you'll find in Beijing.

May 06, 2009
jackkirby in France

Shan Gout and yam'Tcha

Dear fellow chowhounds,

Have to take a Beijing guest to a Chinese restaurant this Friday. Anyone been to either of these joints? Hearing alot of buzz from the press on both, with Shan Gout getting three hearts on Figaro. I know yam'Tcha is more French/Asian but since my guest is a fan of Bo Innovation in HK where the chef used to work, I'm hoping to get away with murder.

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in France

solo dining at Le Bristol for lunch?

Great timing - you'll be in the summer room overlooking the garden. However, it can be a hushed environment if there are few diners. If you find the quiet awkward, request a magazine or newspaper from the waiter or manager. Like rswatkins noted, they're very accommodating. One side note - although I enjoy their set lunches, it doesn't come close to the magic performed by the kitchen during a tasting or selections from the a la carte menu: stuffed macaroni, whiting, bresse hen, etc..

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in France

Pig Out in Tokyo

Haha, you really know how to eat your way through the city! Some of my favourite chow haunts in Tokyo, which I've sadly missed on my last few trips and this time around, are Chinese joints run by Japanese chefs. I'm talking about simple places off the streets - no fancy dynasty decor. If you know a fantastic place, I'll put it on my next list during my fall stopover.

On a side note about Chinese in Tokyo, do you recall any older hotels - Keio, Crowne Plaza, etc... that had a Chinese restaurant in the basement, serving buffet? I remember frequenting that buffet every year with my grandparents during the 80's and early 90's but just can't recall the hotel. It was the highlight of my visits as a kid, that and causing mischief inside the Buddha statue at Kamakura. I know Keio and Crowne have remodeled their Chinese restaurants since then. Not sure if the place is still around.

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

I've actually been frequenting the place every other time I'm in Tokyo. It's not mind-blowing but their pork is so plump and juicy. The batter is so rich and satisfying. I also love their katsu eel and oysters (do darn fat). However, if you prefer a katsu place other than Ponta, please share :)

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Thanks, I hope so too. My associate and company driver know the city well so I'll be in good hands.

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Haha! Yes, I know, I know. It's kinda like a kid at a candy shop and vowing to consume everything only to finish a bag of sweets, and after getting sick at the end, vowing not to visit a candy shop ever again.

But you know what, Prasantrin, it's too late to turn back now, after what we've all been through- a teasingly brutal exercise of mouthwatering talk and no chu-toro in sight. I've got this mountain of three star food to climb. It'll be long, lonely and arduously... delectable journey. Even if it takes my bones, every muscle, every nerve and fiber in my body I will continue on and not stop until i finally conquer my beastly appetite in the hallowed halls of Ryugin.

Back to bagels. Have you tried a Maruichi bagel? We're not taking about Noah's here. Ok, I might invoke the wrath of anyone from the Big Apple but I have to say it actually tops any heavenly dough I've had in New York, including my favourites Murray's (great fluffy donuts too) and Absolute. Funny thing is New Yorkers are really proud of their bagels but if they open up a Maruichi (with all their amazing filling choices) by all the young kids at Columbia or NYU, you'll see a line stretching for blocks from dusk til dawn.

May 05, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Good to know about Sawada and Hirosaku. Thanks for helping me decide. I've heard nothing but great things about Sawada and my associate hasn't told me much about Hirosaku other than that I'll like their soba. Hopefully, I can still get a seat at Sawada..

I was originally thinking of skipping Quintessence since I've been to Kishida's old workplace, L'Astrance before and plan to stop by again in the summer. However, people who have eaten at both places are telling me that Kishida's current work even surpasses that of the Paris restaurant and should not be skipped under any circumstances. And with your enthusiastic blessing, FourSeasons, I hope I won't hype myself up too much.

Once the trip's completed I'll report back next week.

May 04, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

FourSeasons and you brought up a very interesting point - the idea of too many restaurants back to back for enjoyment. In my case, it depends entirely on the type of meal and the reasoning may be counter-intuitive. I think the key - at least, for me and several foodies I know - to avoid being stuffed easily is to eat slow, very slow in long meals with small portions, giving the body time to burn off the food. In my case, Kaiseki fulfills this criteria. However, opposite holds true in short meals with more substantial portions (pork chops, fried chicken, burgers, steaks, or other comfort food). You don't spend an hour on a burger or chop. It's consumed within minutes before the food gets cold and the meat turns stiff. The body can't burn the food as fast given the same amount of time. Thus, although there maybe more food in a Kaiseki set than a burger meal I'll walk away from the Kaiseki less stuffed. At least, for me enough room for another meal an hour later.

May 04, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Good points. Other than Sunday, we secured all the reservations last week before the 3-day holiday. Just shifted my Ryugin booking to Wednesday without any problems after confirmed for Yamada Chikara on Monday night.

Thanks for the heads up on Hirosuke. I'm going with a Japanese associate who recommended the place. But if you have another place in mind that's not far off, we can head there for lunch before our flight on Thursday.

The money spent will not be an issue. Unfortunately, being based in the states we fork out US$400-500 per head on premium fedex fish at Urusawa, Sawa or Masa. And quality isn't better than a Y15,000 place in Tokyo. Y30,000 is a lot of dough but in retrospect is quite the bargain from where I come from. That, and a generous expense account.

On Tuesday night, I'll be heading to Kojyu alone before gathering with friends at Aroma, where we'll share everything. Regardless, I suffer from a ghastly pig-like appetite and my cravings aren't easily satiated by the standard 3 meals a day, which brings me to your other point about "simple comfort food"...

I confess I did not show you guys the other half of my list: Tsujita, Maruichi bagels, Isehiro, Ponte Honke, Ogawaken (tempted to do their formal restaurant chef Ogawa's kitchen counter dinner too), Yamanoue, and Morinoen for desserts... It's more like a wish list, and will manage to find time for 2 or 3 of them. Yeah, not exactly simple.

May 04, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

Pig Out in Tokyo

Dear fellow chowhounders,

Staying for 4 days next week and would really appreciate any suggestions on our eating schedule, especially on Sunday night when options dwindle:

Sunday dinner (any cuisine and no resto booked this night): Yukimura (幸村) or sushi places Kanesaka, Sawada (さわ田) or Quintessence
Monday lunch: Hamadaya
Monday dinner: Ryugin

Tuesday lunch: Saito (鮨さいとう)
Tuesday dinners: Kojyu at 5:30p, then booked at Aroma Fresca at 9p

Wednesday lunch: Quintessence (will go to Koji Shimomura if we end up at Quintessence on Sunday)
Wednesday dinner: Unkai-tei Ginza (business guest request but open to other Teppan ideas)

For Monday snack we're heading to Hiro (ひろ作) in Shinbashi for soba but if anyone has a good place in Ginza (where we are staying/working) we'll check it out. Thank you!

May 04, 2009
jackkirby in Japan

HK Mandarin Grill any good?

Yes, he flew in for the week before heading to his new restaurant in Seoul. Dinner was quite interesting but I think some were quite disappointed (saw a one or two parties walking out on the last course.) My guests and I thought it was spectacular but there were ups and downs. It's hard to describe since so much went into every single plate and none was as simple as portrayed on the menu.

My favourites of the night were a cod fish cake (prepared like a pastry crumble) with a cream herb sauce, a fricasse of lobster with polyphenol sauce that is simliar to Mexican mole and paired with bitter turnip soaked in cranberry and liquor, a bresse chicken on top of a lemongrass panna cotta served in a chicken consomme cooked for 3 days and a mildly sweet blue cheese (sorry forgot the name) with dried fruits and green curry on top of a sweet milk foam. I really cannot do it just justice by description. To tell you the truth menu didn't either. You can see everyone cluelessly looking back and forth between their food and menu. I guess you just have to taste it for yourself. The wine pairing was spot on too. An amazingly adaptable 2006 white chateauneuf du pape was picked for the initial courses. A red chateauneuf du pape was paired for the mains. Overall, a very fun meal. Most of the complaints were the over abundance of desserts: 5 savory to 5 sweet.

Also went to the Berasategui dinner last night other than the veal cheek main course (wasn't awful but portion was too large and nothing special) every dish was 3 star caliber. Very impressive work. Chef said he flew in 7 of his crew in from his restaurant just for this wine dinner. For under 2000 per person a really good deal.

HK Mandarin Grill any good?

Thanks, guys for the updates. Food looks promising. However, I was mistaken the chef that on the 28th is Martin Berasategui from Lasarte, not Opocensky. In the end, we ended up at the Herve This - Gagnaire dinner on Tuesday.

HK Mandarin Grill any good?

Hello Chowhounders!

Have to take some business guests who are wine lovers out for a lavish dinner. They've all been to the usual suspects and want to try something new. An associate suggested the 6 course wine feast at Petrus on the 23rd or the 9 course at the Grill on the 28th. Has anyone tried the food with Uwe Opocensky in the kitchen?

Appreciate any suggestions!

Best fois gras in HK?

Hello Chowhounders,

Friend from NY who is a fois gras freak wants to try some of the best versions in HK. It can be simple (seared, poached, etc..), elaborate or a crucial component of a plate (like Amber's bresse pigeon plate). Totally down for non-western preparations too.

Thanks in advance!
Jack

Darnit, now I got a hankering for cajun or creole

Here's some I've enjoyed (God, do I miss the potato souffles w/ bearnaise at Galatoire's) and I'm sure, with a little digging, you'll find more great joints out in Inglewood:

Gumbo Shack
128 N Market
Inglewood, Ca
310-677-2993

Bayou Grille
1400 N. La Brea
Inglewood, Ca
310-673-0824

Mossville
1327 E. 4th
Long Beach, Ca
562-495-3100

Uncle Al's (Never seen it in NOLA but if you're a dessert guy, get the dump cake)
400 E. 1st
Long Beach, Ca
562-436-2553

Heard good stuff about this place and I've always wanted to try it (and just so happen to forget about it whenever I'm in the vicinity looking for food):

The Spot
2032 N.Lincoln
Pasadena, Ca
626-296-3320

P.S. Anyone know if Frank and Joe's Smokehouse (formerly Cajun Way) is still open?

May 13, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

Best Dim Sum

Yeah, Elite's a fantastic place. Apparently, the guy cooking there is the original chef of Triumphal Palace. You'll spot alot of similar dishes like his sauteed mushrooms, vegetarian duck meat plate and the excellent egg white fried rice with shredded dried scallops.

May 12, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

TiGeorges' Chicken and Haitian Cuisine

Yeah, that's some good stuff. I wonder if he still makes that "Bordeaux" cake. It had a burnt candy top that tended to stick to the roof of your mouth. Darn, it was fantastic.

May 08, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

Pommes Souffle in LA ?

Cinch in SM serves it with their strip loin. Downside is the food is inconsistent. Ortolan served it earlier this year with one of their filet mignon courses. You can always request it ahead of time if they're no longer serving it. The now defunct Chasen's used to serve it and if you can find their old chef working at some other joint I won't be surprised if he/she will whip up some for you.

Apr 29, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

best sushi in studio city area?

To please both of you, it's Katsu-Ya but that's very different from answering your original question, the best sushi in Studio City. Katsu-Ya serves excellent mayo and soy-sauce drenched deep fried rolls. Junk food disguised as sushi (Alright, I confess I love it too). Your pal will be in heaven. I give them credit though for serving good, fresh traditional sushi and sashimi. However, definitely not the best. Not by far. If you want excellent sashimi, there's Asanebo. Strangely enough, their sushi is not that great, subpar rice and cut. When I go there for their omakase, I rarely get more than two servings of sushi out of 10 plates. When I heard that they once used to refuse to serve sushi I completely understood. Sashimi is what they're good at and they shouldn't settle serving anything less. Kazu, like kellydeez pointed out, serves both excellent sushi and sashimi, rivaling Asanebo and they also have less traditional plates. Their toro tartar and tuna carpaccio, for example, are sublime (Asanebo does serve alot of fantastic non-traditional stuff too, the beautiful halibut sashimi with black truffle, seared toro with jalapeno paste, etc..). The trade-off is here. IF you want to please yourself more than your friend and to answer your original question, go to Kazu or Asanebo. But if it's all about your pal or just pleasing both of you, then go to Katsu-Ya.

Apr 25, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

All'Angelo better than Valentino?

Valentino because food and service is more consistent. However, it can still be hit and miss for both. At Valentino, get the tasting menu but if you don't want to dish out 85 per person, I suggest you go with the smaller of the two tastings which is a great deal. If you end up at All Angelo, it's hard to go wrong with the specials, especially with the pasta. If they have the porcini mushroom risotto with leeks, get it. They had it the both times I was there and were fantastic. Otherwise, it's hard to go wrong with their spaghetti with langostino, stuffed hen (sliced), branzino with tomato broth, grilled sea bream which they'll de-bone in front of you and most of all, the veal loin with porcini and gnocchetti (one of the best veal dishes I've had in LA). Desserts are good too with their polenta pudding with lemon zabaglione and panna cotta. Service can definitely be a issue at All Angelo since it's relatively new and some of the servers are occasionally overwhelmed. The first time I was there I had to get Stefano, the owner, to speed up our plates as we waited 40 minutes to get the the pastas after we had our appetizers. After one complaint, everything else went smoothly.

Apr 09, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

I have $400. Where to go?

Japanese omakase (tell them no pork or beef beforehand) at the bar:
Shibucho on Beverly (found this place because of Jerome's rec) - straight forward, traditional (anti-Katsu-ya)

Kiriko - very fresh too, more creative but request to be seated in front of Ken. His protege, Shige is great but attention from the master chef is better.

Wa Sushi (another great rec from Jerome) - most creative of the bunch you can definitely get rolls here and if you do, don't miss out on the TT roll) and you'll get more cooked plates here. TT, the guy in charge of the grill, is one of the best chefs out here in LA. It's quite a spectacle when 3 great chefs prepare your meal in front of you. Since the food is so good, I consider the decor a non-issue.

Seafood (wine pairing recommended for all tastings below) :
Providence - tasting menu

General:
Hatfield's (one of my favs) - The only place in LA where I've had better fish than Providence and Water Grill - for less too.

Sona (only if you're willing to experiment and on the condition that you go with the 9 course tasting with wine pairing). It's a love/hate relationship on this board. The only place where you'll probably spend all of your 400. No non-Japanese restaurant currently in LA has topped my tasting meals there.

Grace (if you have a big sweet tooth). Most inconsistent of the three but when it works, it's fantastic. Excellent desserts.

Italian:
Mozza - truly amazing food and encompasses some of the freshest ingredients of any Italian restaurant. Hard to spend more than 200 here though.

La Terza - Angelini's other place. Although it's famous for it's meats they have some of the best pastas in town. But if they have the branzino, get it. Must get the BRANZINO. I know your girlfriend doesn't eat big animals but the chacuterie plate is phenomenal and so is the the one at Mozza.

Valentino - Again, the above comments are correct. It can be good or really f'ing amazing depending on the night. Some of their pastas are to die for, especially when white truffle is in season.

French:
Melisse. You're correct to choose this place. It's definitely -in my opinion- the best but not necessarily most refined French restaurant left in town. I really miss L' Orangerie and Bastide.

P.S. Skip the Penthouse at the Huntley Hotel by all means. Yech, disgusting and rip-off fare. And if you're really smart, I'll skip all the above restaurants and shell out an additional 200 for a wonder meal at Urasawa. Best 200 out-of-pocket for a meal you'll spend in LA. Alright, I'm lying it's more like 250 with drinks, tip and tax.

Apr 02, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

sweet lady jane- incredibly rude!

That's a shame. Their cakes aren't that good to begin with -really bland stuff- but inexcusable service makes them one of the worst and overrated bakeries in LA. And yes, it's hard to find a berry cream cake that tops Susina's berry blossom. If you haven't yet, try the St. Honore or the Bear cake (a very rich cake) with a cup of vanilla latte. Hard to beat.

Apr 02, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

Best Apple Pie

Yeah, I never got the Apple Pan pie craze either. If you're into the hot mushy and pie drenched in sauce there's the excellent Original Pantry version (that's surprisingly not too sweet) in downtown. Jones, the restaurant/bar on Santa Monica serves a real mean apple pie. One of my favourites is sold at Delilah's bakery in Echo Park - their apple crunch is really good too. They also serve a bourbon pumpkin and sweet potato with gingerbread crust that tastes just as good as they sound. Josie in Santa Monica serves an excellent slice but that I had that last fall and they may not have it anymore.

Mar 23, 2007
jackkirby in Los Angeles Area

Quince or Chez Panisse

Hands down Quince. Like going's to Bertolli's Oliveto (not the one now, yeesh) but more refined. Lettuce is right though, the cafe at CP is better than the dining room. Regardless, I'll go for Quince. Ahh, their agnolotti dal plin is heavenly.