Tuscan-born Michele Farnesi – Passerini’s former sous-chef during the Rino period – found the ideal spot to bring his instinctive cuisine to life, in the Ménilmontant neighborhood. At his bistrattoria with country accents (old hardwood floors, an ornate bar), his €49 tasting menu sent shivers of pleasure down our spine the other night: an erogenous lamb ham with rosemary panisses as a prelude; tender ravioli with a red kuri squash cream and incredible raw Sicilian prawns dressed in a passion fruit vinaigrette; coco de Paimpol beans and a scorpionfish fillet tucked away in a small fish soup with black cabbage oil; an excellent Pigeon breast and thigh with a Soulages-inspired offal sauce, all brightened up by a vinegary cabbage salad; before a diabolically good dessert that paired an oregano-infused fermented milk mousse with an avalanche of figs, pickled capers and shortbread. He shakes things up at lunch as well, with things like tortellini filled with baccala mantecato (a cod brandade without the potatoes) and bergamot; celery water with bottarga and powdered olives; plaice, salsify, hazelnuts, chard and a vin jaune-infused beurre blanc sauce; fusilli, broccoli rabe, fennel seeds, sausage and lemon; hazelnut custard, etc. // R.deC.
FEELING THIRSTY? A wine list that travels up and down the Boot: a Friuli white from Marco Sara (€8 a glass), a Sicilian red from Porta del Vento (€46 a bottle), an exclusive Tuscan white from Fabbrica di San Martino (€58) or Thèse, a Côtes-Catalanes red from the Domaine Riberach (€69)….
PRICE: Menus €19-37 (weekday lunch), €49, €66 and €79 (dinner and weekends).