Le Guide Fooding’s Best Restaurant of 2016
Inside this space designed by Keisuke Nakamura (rough walls, old buckled hardwood floors, soft lighting), chef Taku Sekine and his alcohol-minded partner Amaury Guyot continue blessing the happy unions between explosively flavorful cocktails and cuisine with an Asian twist. The other day, the five-course menu (€95, five dishes and five cocktails) demonstrated once again a celebration of the art of food & cocktail pairing like nowhere else in Paris. After a taste-bud-tickling amuse bouche (sweet potato tempura and aioli), the show can begin: incredible bonito and meagre ceviche with a cucumber brunoise, shiso leaves and ponzu sauce, served with a tasty vodka, vermouth rosé, mango and Timut peppercorn cocktail; delicious flame-charred herring with eggplant cooked in tomato water and a splendid dashi, perfectly paired with a shot of white wine infused with dragon fruit and Vietnamese cilantro; luminous yellow pollack cooked in butter, with whelks, clams and mussels, in a civil union with a wonderful mixture of sake, aquavit and raspberry juice; a gourmet Iberian pork loin marinated in lemongrass, galangal and doubanjiang, served with a silky Mexican mole and a unique liquid combo of sake, shochu, an orange reduction and sesame oil! All that before the more banal finale of strawberry and rhubarb with frozen yogurt and a bit of pisco, hazelnut and kumquat extracts and pommeau from Normandy. The Sunday brunch is also highly recommendable (barbecued pork in bang bang sauce for €25, beef and miso ragout for €16), much like their Saturday lunch fare: César salad with lobster (€26), lemongrass duck breast (€19), etc. Menus €19-135, à la carte €14-26 (Saturday), brunch €9-25 (Sunday). // G.LeP.