Wednesday, September 10, 2008


I am back in France for a short holiday and the beginning of the harvest of the vineyard. But before heading down south, we spent two nights in Paris. I arrived early in the morning in Paris, headed to the apartment to shower and was ready for our first fantastic lunch in Paris.

The restaurant we went to was Drouant. A very famous restaurant because of the very famous chef Antoine Westermann. He was a three star Micheline chef. He decided to give up his three stars and opened his very famous restaurant called Mon Vieil Ami on Ile St. Louis in 2003. Then in 2006, he bought the 'Drouant' (an established, well respected and very old restaurant which opened in 1880 by Mr. Drouant from Alsace) and turned it into a modernised Parisian Brasserie. The outcome is this fantastic restaurant.

We decided to have a light lunch and not go for the 'lunch menu'. It was already late and we were going to have a big dinner, so we decided to order a-la-carte.

The first dish was lamb stew with seasonal vegetables. A fabulous dish. The sauce was rich, thick and flavourful. The vegetables were cooked like I like them, not overly cooked and still had a soft crispiness to them. The lamb was incredibly tender and tasted wonderful.

The second dish was Westermann's wiener schnitzel (Viennese cutlet). A huge piece of veal coated with breadcrumbs and deep fried to a golden brown. The veal was very tender and very tasty.

The wiener schnitzel came with french fries that were amazing. Deep fried to a golden brown, crispy outside but unbelievably soft in the inside. The accompanying condiments (photo below) that I ate with the veal was; butter, lemon with anchovy on top, minced hard boiled egg and capers.

We did not order dessert but only coffee. The coffee came with petite fours of chocolate squares (one is missing because someone at my table had very fast hands) and stewed candied orange slices.

The restaurant is in a beautifully restored building with blue metal window terraces. You have the choice to eat outside or inside, we opted to eat inside because it was a bit chilly. We had a very nice lunch at Drouant. It was a beautiful room with tables nicely spaced. The waitress we had could have been more friendly and the service was not 100% spot on. But, I was easy going since I was just happy to be in Paris again.

Drouant normally has valet parking, but when we arrived there was no one there to take our car. So, we parked on a livrason, which should have been ok for a late saturday afternoon. But we were wrong. The parking ticket maidens appeared out of no where, they were very fast at giving parking tickets. The maitre-d was observant and very nice, he took our keys and moved our car for us and put a 'Drouant' sticker on the dash board of the car, so that the ticket policewomen would leave our car alone.

16 rue Gaillon, 2nd arrondisment, Paris
Tél : +33 1 42 65 15 16 Fax : + 33 1 49 24 02 15

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