From behind the scarlet red kitsch facade of an old neighborhood Chinese joint, Cheval d’Or (or “golden horse,” named after the original dive) has finally broken into a full gallop. And why’s that? Well, Taku Sekine (Dersou) and Florent Ciccoli (Jones, Café du Coin) have teamed up to grab this beast by the reins, bucking up its rugged coat – exposed stones, creaky hardwood floors, an open kitchen. As we swung into the saddle the night of our visit, small and large plates had us neighing with delight: explosively flavorful clams in a lemongrass broth; delicious meager carpaccio with yuzu and soy sauce; smoking hot bao buns filled with extremely tender pork; more pork, served atop noodles plus an egg yolk waiting to be punctured; white and green asparagus served over a damn good white sesame cream; and a comforting custard bao with crème pâtissière, before stepping back down to solid ground. Woah boy! And for those who didn’t manage to snag a table online, 16 seats are available at the bar every night! // Elena di Benedetto and Gaëlle Vieillefon
FEELING THIRSTY? There’s Deck & Donohue IPA brewed in Montreuil (€4.50 for 330 ml), cold-brewed green tea (€6 for 500 ml) and, best of all, beautiful natural wines: a Chiroubles from Damien Coquelet (€7 a glass), a Bourgogne-Aligoté from Fanny Sabre (€35 a bottle), an Alsace-Pinot noir from the Geschickts (€41)…
PRICES: Snacks €3-7, plates €7-28, desserts €7.