Review of Neva Cuisine, Pirouette, and Abri in Paris
Recently, my companion and I ate at these three restaurants..
Neva Cuisine: We had lunch here with John Talbot and Colette. Over all, the food was some what disappointing. I started with the foie GRAS which was rich and flavorful. The main dish sweetbreads
needed salt and even when it was added was bland. Dessert, Baba au Rhum, was a good example of what it should be, moist and rummy.
Pirouette: We had dinner at this restaurant based on John Talbot's recommendation. It's a new addition to the Les Halle's area and if I may say so, an excellent one. I began with Alouette, a small bird, that was crunchy and heavenly. My main dish was Cou de Cochon ( pork). This was a very tasty interesting dish where the meat was complimented with small potatoes a vegetables. An excellent interpretation of a country dish. My dessert, rice pudding flavored with caramel and crunchy nuts, was very different than the typical version.
Abri: This is another new comer by a Japanese chef with impressive credentials. This hole In the wall restaurant seats 18 people. I had the Menu de Gustation (38 Euros) consisting of 6 courses. Three of them were outstanding, and three were mediocre. The escabeche, a beautifully presented dish of roasted winter squash with nuts herbs and a tiny potato in a light dressing , juxtaposed different favors and textures. The duck breast, cooked rare, was in a delicious red wine sauce. The dessert, a rich marquise of chocolate with a scoop of chocolate sorbet was a chocolate lover's heaven. A Chablis went beautifully with the food.
I've been to Abri four times now. While the first couple times were pretty near perfect, the last two meals I found the cooking a bit lacking. The products were great, the technique was fine, just flavor combos I wasn't into much...Still, for the price, can't be beat.
I went to Abri for the first time last week, for lunch. Out of four dishes two were excellent, one was mediocre (a dessert of puff pastry, apple and crème pâtissière) and one made no sense (an ice-cold potimarron velouté with totally incongruous jasmine cream on top, you could have thought they got the inspiration from Sephora - sorry, La Dame de Pic). All in all it is obvious that they can do very well, and the value is great.