Rouge Barre 

Rouge Barre  (Lille)

Sophie Stalnikiewicz

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Classy mouldings, bare brick walls, faded paintings, atelier windows… At Steven Ramon’s place, the dining room is in keeping with the zeitgeist. Packed the day we went, the lunch menu (€30) titillated the senses: porcini mushroom mousseline sprinkled with dried lard, a sharp balancing act between silky and crunchy textures – perfect with the Saint-Chinian “A” from the Domaine Cathala with its delicate peppery notes (€6.50 a glass); a crispy brill steak breaded in Japanese panko, with a parsley crumble for a youthful touch and a classic sauce gribiche that’s actually still à la mode – even better with a rare biodynamic white Rhone from the Domaine Lombard (€6.50); before a very pear-heavy dessert – dacquoise caramelized in salted butter under a cube of pear blancmange, slices of pear over a golden lacelike tuile, vanilla pear coulis, and a pear and sweet spice ice cream. And for lovers of well-made wines: a Sancerre from the Domaine Pierre Prieur (€36), a Saumur-Champigny from Antoine Sanzay (€39), etc. Set menus €23-30 (lunch), menus €66 (food and wine pairings €95), kids €14, à la carte €56-61. // P.A.

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