Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Les Deserteurs and Restaurant Will

I checked my Facebook page and under a friend's post, saw a link to an article of new Paris restaurants in NY Magazine. My FB friend's update said "Wish I was in Paris right now!"  

What luck for us, we were on our last day in Paris!

It would be sad to have a mediocre meal in Paris, a city of thousands of restaurants, when one can easily have an outstanding one by keeping an ear to the ground.  How timely this article was then--it was just published that a few days before.

I made a couple of phone calls and luckily was able to squeeze in two restaurants on our last day--one for lunch and another for dinner.

We walked over to Les Deserteurs in the 11th arrondissement for lunch. It was very close to where we were staying.

The place was small, with only about 24 seats. There were no tourists in the house, mostly locals, but there was also a photographer from a local weekly magazine covering the lunch crowd.

Les Deserteurs just has one fixed menu that is served to everyone. It was also reasonably priced.

First course was an in-season white asparagus.

I know we shouldn't have but we couldn't stop eating the sourdough bread. It was just too good.

Main course was a serving of lamb in a light but very flavourful sauce. I love how French servings are not overwhelming, being just right for one person.

The dessert of chocolate mousse with salted caramel ice cream on a bed of cookie crumbs and toasted sesame seeds was exquisite.

Later that evening, Bea met up with us at Will, in the 12th arrondissement. Will was just a couple of blocks away from Les Deserteurs--it's the same general area.

At Restaurant Will, we had a choice of entrees, mains and desserts, and it was also reasonably priced.

Since we were three, we could order more and try each other's dishes.

We each received a small serving of pumpkin soup as a palate teaser.

Between us we had squid ink "risotto" which as actually made of chopped radish.

The "cabillaud", a white fish...

And  the beef.

For dessert, the "eton mess"

And the chocolate dessert--which was very similar to the dessert we had at lunch but with a different presentation.

Chocolate, caramel, sesame seeds...

We enjoyed all our dishes and were happy to be able to try these new restaurants which are considered modern French. The food is straightforward, clean and delicately flavoured--no heavy hand of sauces to smother out the freshness of the ingredients.

 We stayed on until everyone left and were able to chat with Will himself.

Apparently, he also worked in a restaurant where the chef/owner from LesDeserteurs also worked --not together though, but one after the other.  That probably explains the similarity of their "all-chocolate" dessert.

with Will

Will had not heard about the NYMag article which had just recently been published so I got email address and sent it to him.   There are tons of restaurants that will be considered "new" to those of us who don't live in Paris, but if you want to check out what new young French chefs are up to, in their own new restaurants that are beginning to get rave reviews, these two are a good place to start.

Bon appétit!

Les Deserteurs
46 rue Trousseau, 11th Arrondissement, Paris; Tel. (33) 01-48-06-95-85
Metro: Ledru Rollin, Faidherbe – Chaligny, or Charonne.
Closed Sunday and Monday. 
Prix-fixe lunch menu 28 Euros, average dinner 50 Euros.

75 rue Crozatier, 12th Arrondissement, Tel. 01-53-17-02-44. 
Metro: Ledru-Rollin or Faidherbe-Chaligny. 
Closed Sunday and Monday dinner.  
Lunch menu 19 Euros, prix-fixe dinner menu 45 Euros, average a la carte 45 Euros.

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