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Sep 25, 2007 11:09 AM

A little trip to France (Paris, Perigord, Pays Basque)

I am just back from two weeks in France , one week being spend in Paris and the rest on the road.

My two Pris find were memorable . First , Le Grand Pan in the 15iem was very , very good.

Benoit Gauthier , a 27 year old chef from the south west , who used to be a second at another restaurant , opened this little "meat" bistro at 20 rue de Rosenwald in the 15iem.

At dinner time , he prepares big portions of beef , pork or veal ribs cooked so perfectly that they dont need sauce. All his meats a from AOC. I've tasted them all and they were all suculent. Arnauld , the waiter , first bring you a soup , the same for evryone. One night was a gaspacho , the other night a crab bisque that was very good and earthy.

The meats a re accompanied by beautifull thing french fries that are mixed with a bit of sauté shalotte and some green salad. We got a side order of sauted wild mushroom. Deserts we all good , from the raspberry tart , to the chocolate cream.

For lunch , we had stuffed veal belly: a nice round pice of veal , stuffed with saussage and pine nuts, browned and then slowwly cooked in broth.

Bellow , a picture from "Le Grand Pan"
When we were there , the fourth item on the menu was brittany lobster cooked ala plancha , but the season is over and I think he now has St-Jacques.

Be sure to have a glass of Cerdon, a nice bubbly red as a aperitif. All of the wines are served in pitchers , from small producers.

All our meals at Le grand Pan were wonderfull , because of the food and because of Benoit and Arnauld who are very nice people ! A true find !

75015 PARIS
Tel : 01 42 50 02 50
Métro : Plaisance.

They other find is called Le coupe Gorge , near the Hotel de Ville. This is not a wonderfull restaurant , but a nice and inexpensive one nonethe less. The evening menu is 17E...very nice !
I had the foie gras with shesuan pepper ( 3E extra) as a starter , then a steak tartare ( the classic) and a tatin for dessert. All were quite good and for the price , very nice.

When in Paris , I alway get a nutella crepe at the crepe stand in front of the St-Germain church in St-Germain . Fresh and served with a smile.

We had macarons from Pierre Hermé and some from Laduré. Laduré won for us

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  1. We the headed south , first to Bourge , were our meal was forgetable.

    We then went all the way , south west , stopping in Espelette to see the nice little white houses were the peppers are hung to dry. We bought some Piment d'espelette saucisson and some Sel de bayonne with Piment d'espellette. Wow.

    We ended up in Saint-Jean-pied-de-port, a wonderfull little city on the Compostell road. After climbing the mountain to see the citadell , we ended up at Lizarra ,on a nice terrasse with a view of the citadelle.

    I had a piperade basque ( peppers , tomatoes , eggs) with a piece of ham on top , followed by nice big slices of pork with Pimientos Del Piquillo de Lodosa and fries. Ver good ! My travel parner add the paella tht was quite ordinay

    1. WE then went back up north to the Perigor and Dordogne region. In no particular order :

      We stopped in Priguex where we haad a wonderfull meal a t small restaurant called Le Matelo ( I dont have the adress now). We ate on the terrase , in the middle of a nice medieval street.

      My partner add the Moules du Mont-St-Michel , while I add the Lieu-noir ( i dont know the english name for that fish) with a spice crust, servd on a bed of almost caramelised carrots and a small dish of capponata. Everything tasted fresh and lovingly prepared

          1. It seems that pictures dont want to be put up !

            A stop in Beynac gave us another nice meal: In the only nice place in the village we had , for me , some nice veal chops with some sort of curried coucous that was hidden in a brick cone. My parner had steak with shallots tha was ordinary ( he got lucky latter).His starter was a duck and foie gras terrine and mine was a warm chevre salad