- John Talbott Jan 31, 2014 12:29 PM
I'm aware Neva has a mixed reputation on CH but i've never had a bad dish there since it opened.
However, today I went to Beatriz Gonzales's second place - Coretta (named in honor of the wife of Dr Martin Luther King Jr, whose park you look out on), and I'd be interested in other CH's impressions (versus F-R Gaudry and Pudlo's) - it has a dazzling interior design, great waitfolks, an interesting menu and carte, an overthetop toilet and a great pastry by Yannick Tranchant, I assume, but I don't think she's ramped the food up to Neva standards yet - but comment, please, I want to go back.
(JT, maybe Coretta should have its own thread)
And comments I have. Beginning with a perhaps unnecessary back story: My older sister, married to an Italian and now living in Italy, is back in Paris for a week, arrived with a severe case of pasta and fritto misto fatigue and insisted on eating modern and creative French cuisine as often as as possible... even before she came, she had fixed on Coretta (among a huge list of other places) ... it seems the tom-toms that alert us locals to great new finds can be heard in Italy too.
Anyway, I did manage to get a table there last week thanks to a friend's connection with one of the chefs. And it was stellar. Naturally very similar to Neva's cuisine but, and we (my sister, her hubby/ "maritino", me, and my best pal) all agreed, better. Maybe it was just the electricity and buzz (rave reviews in Lefooding.com, Figaroscope and A Nous Paris) that gave the room a glow that encouraged our appreciation. But my enjoyment of the addictive tempura-style veggie frites, the masterful use of veggies (similar quality but 1/20th of the price of Arpège), and the perfect ris de veau was absolute. And, great for us drivers, an excellent and adventurous selection of wine by the glass. Surprisingly (the Neva brand is most famous for its pastry chefs), my only disappointment was a coffee-sesame tube for dessert... way too adult for my tastes... but the other desserts I shared were delish !
I do have a little problem with the location... even with the soothing outlook over the Parc Martin Luther King, there's a feeling of strange and abrupt isolation... and the still unripe new quartier Clichy-Batignolles (the proposed site for an Olympic village for Paris' failed bid for the 2012 Olympics) doesn't really help. But an easy walk from the epicentre of the very trendy Batignolles quartier so not a huge deficit for us quartier-centric flâneur types.