Dans Les Landes and LeFooding
Had reservations at Les Papilles but was voluntarily delayed at the Matisse show at the Pompidou Center. In trying to change to a later time, it was suggested we find another resto for dinner. *sigh* Called Dans Les Landes, recommended by the LeFooding site and went there. Dans Les Landes was amazing.
All daily specials are on a chalkboard. It's inventive tapas, so you need not order appetizers, plats and desserts. Mix it up, try what you wish and ask for wine recommendations. The service is terrific, the restaurant is hopping, the music is excellent. Highlights were duck and oysters served on the half shell on a bed of sea salt, grilled suckling pig slices, quail, and the house made armagnac digestif. We were made to feel phenomenally welcome and in the end, this evening was one of the highlights of our Paris journey.
The restaurant was begun by the same guys who founded Afaria in the 15e.
Check out LeFooding, a kind of hip and cool french recommendation site in Paris. It's a little anti-michelin, but as a tool this site is worthwhile and having gone to a couple of their recommended restaurants and with relatives in Paris who have also enjoyed some of the recommendations --- I think this is worth a look. They provide an additional approach to eating your way through Paris, stress the new french approach to food and many young french chefs.
Very very very hot, and they smile and nod and serve drinks and beautiful food. Hopefully my husband will not read this (wink). And I did love the music, but they played many bands I enjoy.
Did you try their homemade armagnac drink? WOW...loved it!
The french couple next to us were regulars and having a birthday celebration, they told us about the first restaurant in the 15e and encouraged us to proceed there, apparently its "even better". We were at the bar, watched the food being arranged for service and were exceedingly well placed for sampling, bar service and lots of great explanations on what the food was, which items were excellent and stories on why the Basque house wine was perfect with what we ordered. I had a great time!
You must have young intact eardrums, unless us geezers. :-(
Another thing I liked about the food is its inventiveness, not stuff that one could find elsewhere.
For this reason, last week I had actually canceled a dinner at Les Papilles and opted for Dans Les Landes, and my out-of-town friends were very happy with the choice.
So glad to hear that, because that is what happened to us when we chose to stay at the Matisse exhibit. It's such a tough choice because the experience of Paris is so precious, but Paris is more than food and the evenings out, it is also the art that can only be seen here in this one place, the happenstance of weather and the sounds of music drifting up from the young singing twenty somethings far below you in the square. We only had this one opportunity to visit the Pompidou Center and the sun was setting over Paris. It was warm and beautiful and from the terrace we could go in and out of the art exhibits and watch the city come to life at dusk. Dans Les Landes was a perfect alternative and probably far better for the two of us that evening with the kind of spontaneous magical circumstances coming to life around us.
I am 50 next month, but have liked edgy music for over 30 years. My husband does not hear as clearly as I do and with the restaurant "roar" couldn't really identify the music. Not hearing the music was a bit frustrating for him, but he loved the restaurant. We left the next morning for Amsterdam. What a great trip. I which I was still there!
I loved the interesting food combinations and the joy and playfulness in the plating. The dishes were a surprise with the possible exception of the deep fried polenta and smoked duck. It was tasty, but I had not expected the rectangle of deep fried steaming heat. I made a decision before heading to Paris this trip, to try whatever came up regardless of my likes and dislikes and to be adventurous. WOW! I had mussels, oysters and duck, eggs that were not cooked all the way through, fruits and foods I could not identify and threw myself with joyous abandon into the care of chefs and servers I had never met. What a great time we had! I did not get sick once, ate everything I was served, and learned some valuable lessons.
Learning tip 1: In the states I like a medium bodied red to full. In France that will be so dry as to be swallowing the Sahara, wait until it breathes or ask for a pairing to the chef's taste.
LT2: Natural wines take longer to breathe and change taste a lot over the course of the meal.
LT3: By the glass is more expensive and has fewer choices, but the variety can be a revelation and wine bars are wine bars for a reason, the bottles behind the bar are fun to drink.