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How to Deal with Chez Josephine Dumonet Properly

l will start this thread by saying l assume everyone knows how to deal with this restaurant in the 6th arrondisement of Paris, but l did not. My first time with a valued friend we had the foie gras with a 40 year old barsac, the mammoth veal chop, as it was a Wednesday the gigot of lamb, and a souffle for dessert. The second wine was an older Bordeaux. The lunch took three hours plus and for two days l felt like a beached whale, no not a beached dolphin, but a whale. It was way too much of a good thing and l could not function.l almost dreaded returning as how to decide, what to eliminate, what to do ? l was in a true tizzy. l was saved by a non foie, non souffle GF. As the foie was skipped, the barsac was as well. As the souffle was skipped, the worry during the plats about too much food was eliminated as well. Thus our meal consisted of a full portion of the boeuf bourgignon with tagietelle, and calves liver with Landes potatoes instead of mashed all with a bottle of a younger Languedoc wine.

l make a superb boeuf bourgignon, this was so superior as to make mine feh. The noodles with it as a pasta ignorer may have been the finest noodles ever, the liver was perfect and the potatoes were reminiscent of L'Ami Louis's pomme galette. It was a total dream meal, total cost 95 euros, thus a relative bargain as well.

While full and just finished a 2 hour nap, l feel human. Thus order less, enjoy more with less body risk.

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  1. DCM: your post made me smile, thinking about last December's dinner with that same trusted friend. Surely one does not always need to order the same things every time? So glad you discovered that.

    I am so looking forward to returning there!

    1. We just had dinner there last night and are still recovering - we had to cancel our lunch today because we just weren't up for it. Wish I saw your post first!

      The foie / barsac (30 yr old in my case) would be hard to skip - that was my favorite part of the meal!

      We also had the "obligatory" duck confit / souffle, but wish I had gone with the boeuf bourgignon which looked and smelled incredible. The duck confit was good but not incredible - maybe I was expecting too much. The souffle was giant and generous, but in quality not as good as the Regalade souffle from a few days earlier.

      On the other hand, contrary to some reports, we loved the overall experience and service. My girlfriend's tartare was prepared tableside and was delicious and fun. We drank too much, spent too much, ate too much and had a great time. We'd go back, but maybe with more control like DCM.

      10 Replies
      1. re: tomotsu

        Assume your barsac was the '82 Climens, it was tempting at 88 euros.. And with me it is not self control, l possess none. It is self preservation.

        1. re: Delucacheesemonger

          Actually had a demi of '81 Climens that I don't think was on the list. Very good, maybe not the most complex, but full of life and perfect balance with the foie at this stage in its life. I was very close to getting the '58 Coutet for 200 euros though.

          1. re: Delucacheesemonger

            Great posts. What visitors forget is that they will be eating out night after night after night. Replicating meals that a local might order once a month or so can be counterproductive at a minimum. I really have to watch how I book because at some point my husband will hit the wall and demand a respite (read:cancellations). While we all like to joke to the contrary, more is not more.

            1. re: mangeur

              We booked an apartment with kitchen. This is highly recommended. We have been eating out 1 meal per day, usually lunch, and otherwise cooking the great products from the markets. Saves money and our stomachs. And it's just plain fun to buy monkfish from Lorenzo to cook at home - fish like that makes it easy to feel like a great chef.

              I highly recommend it for food focused visitors if you are staying more than a couple days. Even still, we had to cancel this lunch - but it's been our only cancellation thus far out of 10 days, not bad!

              1. re: tomotsu

                I really agree with you in principle, but for us an apartment was a pain. I cook 3meals x7 at home. The first few times we took an apartment, it was like being at home. Later ventures worked alright as I only did breakfast. But I still love rolling over and calling downstairs for room service in the morning.

                Another side to dining out is the benefit of learning from excellent chefs. I dissect before I eat, hoping for that "Ahaaa" moment when you wish that you had thought of the treatment and composition in front of you.

                1. re: tomotsu

                  Complete agree with you, tomotsu, but Lorenzo? Are you confusing Florence with France?
                  All food enthusiasts should rent a place with kitchen. Getting stuff from the market will be your top fun & enchantment.

                  Mangeur: you don't have to do complicated cooking to enjoy what the market has to offer.
                  Avocado stuffed with aslmon lumps. 15 seonds.
                  A fresh slice of St Pierre sautzed in pesto sauce. 2 minutes.
                  Make yourself a reserve of vinaigrette with great French mustard. It will last a one-week stay.
                  Not to mention the plâteaux de fruits de mer that one can lug home from a nearby poissonnerie. I have to, just have to trot out sistereurope's photo again.
                  http://www.chow.com/photos/767066

                  1. re: Parigi

                    You are entirely right. I am just saying that we have always done it wrong. We overbuy and spend days using up our catch, arrive "home" without energy to prepare the lovely meal we had in mind, have not brought "cooking clothes" and try to saute in street clothes. And shopping with my husband is a marathon affair. "How does this look to you...Would you like some of these lovely xyzs tonight...Perhaps the market several blocks away will have something better..." His dream is to buy out of shop windows some of the ready to-reheat dishes that look so lovely. Until it is time to "point and shoot" and actually buy something, then it's off to another purveyor, finally something that passes muster, This is someone who is terribly easy to please at home, but out in the marketplace, he loses it. And by the time we get back to the apartment, I've lost it!

                    We do eat out of the markets at lunch. And we do spend hours looking at food porn at them. But for me, going to France is letting someone else cook for me. We don't eat out at home (period) in anticipation of our dinners out in France. This is my vice.

                    1. re: Parigi

                      Thanks for trotting. What an appetizing set of photos!

                      1. re: Parigi

                        He means Lorenzo, the fishmonger at the Richard Lenoir market, or wherever he sets up his stall on the other days of the week.

                        1. re: Busk

                          Yes, that's correct. Fishmonger at Richard Lenoir. Coming from San Francisco where unfortunately it can be difficult and expensive to find high quality fish, it's a dream to buy such great product so reasonably.