L’OFFICE: “This changed hands a couple of months ago and is really up-and-coming, I think. It has foreign chefs, [New York City’s Kevin O’Donnell and Michael Lombardi, who formerly worked at Mario Batali’s Del Posto]. The owner, Charles Compagnon, ran a few of the Costes restaurants, like Lily Wang, and was precise and market-based. It’s just this funky little storefront, really well-decorated, really interesting people and very much a product-driven French cuisine, using whatever is best on the market, with a completely new menu every day. The starter I had was almost a riff on a breakfast: a slow-cooked hen’s egg with braised pork belly and a tomato [jam] that was like the most luxurious ketchup you’ve ever eaten. There was roast chicken with chanterelle mushrooms and this really interesting pot-au-feu, sort of osso buco kind of thing, where they had replaced the pork with organic veal. Normally it’s a soft, soupy kind of dish and they had introduced crunchy vegetables into it, giving a little bit of a different feel. Easy, simple stuff slightly reinvented, very good value for money.”
L’Office: 3 Rue Richer, 75009 Paris. Tel.: +33-1-47-70-67-31.
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