…And God created the bistro! After a year of renovations, the tireless Benjamin Fourty (former manager of the Café de la Nouvelle Mairie) and interior designer Marie Carmarans opened up this tiny spot (coffee-toned mosaic floors, a black marble bar, a well-stocked wine cellar visible behind glass, a chill terrace) where the Mouffetard neighborhood’s grimy local pub used to be. Nowadays, the young chef Jonathan Gru (ex-Bel Ordinaire) keeps bellies satiated with straightforward cooking, which pairs so nicely with the natural nectars served by the glass or by the “caluche” – which means “bottle” in local Angers slang. The other night we had: comforting whole pig’s ear that was both crispy and gelatinous, with a finely chopped persillade and a refreshing verjus vinaigrette; a generous portion of perfectly flash-seared cuttlefish served on a bed of grilled figs and zucchini (an incredible pairing!), all glistening with the cooking juices – or a hearty roasted quail with lemony buttered corn on the side; before a chocolate tartlet on a shortbread crust for a timeless dessert…. A classic neighborhood joint, baby! // Aïtor Alfonso
FEELING THIRSTY? When it comes to the “caluches,” there’s plenty to choose from: an Alsatian Pinot noir from Jean-Pierre Rietsch (€6 a glass), an Aveyron white from Nicolas Carmarans (€42 a bottle), a Bandol red from the Château Sainte-Anne (€49)…
PRICE: Plates €8-26.