Restaurant Vecchio (Paris)

© Léo Kharfan

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When two rascals of the 11th arrondissement, Gianmarco Gorni (the former chef at Goguette) and Hubert Niveleau (the founder of Sarra Deli), dress their trattoria up in stilettos atop Le Perchoir Ménilmontant, things are guaranteed to pop off! In this kitsch-rococo setting with thick red curtains, cloth and paper tablecloths and a big golden cross – where the music is anything but subtle, the dynamic duo unveils mouthwatering Italian-American cuisine. The other night, savored by candlelight: an intensely flavorful arancino stuffed with cheddar and drizzled in mayonnaise; a dangerously delicious steak tartare with pesto and mustard seeds on a puffed up pizzetta; silky bucatini al limone, dressed in Parmesan, oregano and Petrossian bottarga; or some awesome chicken parm, aka indecently decadent breaded chicken breast covered in mozzarella and tomato sauce, with crispy new potatoes and sage, plus a salad that’ll make you want to talk with your hands – cos lettuce, radicchio, pecorino, mint and garlicky croutons. What about the dolci? There’s bombolone (a type of beignet) that you cover in melted chocolate, plump tiramisu, or even freshly blended lemon sorbet pimped out with egg yolk and vodka… A presto, Vecchio! // Henriette Ma

FEELING THIRSTY? : Classic Italian cocktails for your aperitivo (Negronis and Espresso Martinis for €11), and Italian wines to go with your meal: a primitivo from Puglia by the Natalino Del Prete winery (€44 a bottle), a Verona rosé produced by Sassara (€35)…
PRICE: : Appetizers €8-14, mains €19-39, dessert €8-11.

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