Sunday, February 10, 2008

Michelin Paris Red Guide 2008 Rumours

**LATEST NEWS** according to François Simon's blog: one star each for Il Vino and Aida, and no retrograding for Arpege (but maybe next year...)

It's the time of year when the rumour mill starts predicting who will win and who will lose those precious Michelin stars. Thanks to Chroniques du Plaisir for creating the first online discussion site on facebook and especially François Simon, who, for the last decade or so has had the goods before everyone else.

The guide comes out on March 6th.

Here are a few of the predictions, which seem pretty solid to me. Arpege, seem to be having more and more trouble with their organization (I have sent them tables daily for a very long time) and have noticed a huge difference in the (lack of) quality in their telephone manners and general professionalism. I think they've taken on too many low paid, non- experienced stagieres. . I'm sure the cuisine is still superb, but they need vast improvement on the PR side of things.

Gérald Passédat at Le Petit Nice (last year's espoir) in Marseille will get three stars

Philippe Legendre at Le Cinq will get back his third star

L’Oustau de Baumanière aux Baux- de-Provence, gets two stars and an "espoir" rating.

L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon gets two stars

Jean-François Piège (Les Ambassadeurs, Hôtel de Crillon) misses out again on his third star.

Didier Elena (Les Crayères) gets his third star (false rumour?)

Alain Passard, loss of one star (probably false rumour)

William Ledeuil (Ze Kitchen Galerie – Paris) gets his first star

Alain Ducasse gets a star for his opening of the Jules Verne (wow, not bad after being open a month or two!)

This is a work in progress that will be continually updated as I get more intell....

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Just a I predicted, The Guardian mentionned my gridskipper "cool" smoking post in their recent article on the ban.`

Monday, February 04, 2008

Guess yet another travel journo is dredging up hot intell on my blog in view of writing a "cool" article like : "Bobo Burgers in the City of Lights", etc

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Gridskipper Report: Paris Restaurants

Right here, written in collaboration with the lovely Meg.

Les Fines Gueules

Excellent tuna rolled in sesame seeds and accompanied with avocado purée and Joel Thiébault salad

Killer steak tartar

Nice surprise. Wine bar/bistro behind the Banque de France. Most probably the best steak tartar I've ever had. (Desnoyer meat au couteau with pesto, parsley and aged parmesan, and a side salad with Joel Thiébault veggies). Wine list is a little limited and I wish I hadn't seen the guy who worked in the kitchen leave the bathroom without washing his hands, but hey, we're in France..and it's still a great bet for getting drunk on a Sunday afternoon eating raw meat.

Or, as my GOGO review says:

Les Fines Gueules

Steak tartar with grenade potatoes, 17€

Located just off of the place des Victoires, this wine bar/bistro was a pleasant surprise during a recent Sunday lunch. Raved about in the French press when ex-Bistral owner Arnaud Bradol took over last year and gave the small, three-floored eatery a major makeover, their continuing success is due to a simple idea: offer the best produce cooked well. A plate of delicious charcuterie, sliced on a vintage hand-worked machine started us off just right, followed by a starter of juicy tuna, rolled in sesame and served with an avocado purée. The piece de resistance (which pretty much everyone in the restaurant was having) was a superb steak tartar au couteau , made with top grade beef from Desnoyer, mixed with persil and aged parmesan, and served with roasted grenade potatoes. The pear tarte tatin with fresh cream was a delightfully decadent ending to a satisfying meal.

Open daily for lunch and dinner, 43 rue Croix des Petits Champs, 75001, M° Pyramides,