Monday, April 09, 2012

Le Coq Rico (Paris, France)

We had a good friend stopping in Paris before he went back home to Hong Kong. We decided to have dinner with him. We read about a new & amazing restaurant that only specialised in roasted chickens (there are also other roasted birds on offer like pigeon)...and not just any kind of chicken; the best types of chickens France has to offer...Bresse, Challans, Coucon de Rennes, Géline de Touraine, etc. Great concept (what took so long for someone to think about this); so we decided to meet our friend at Le Coq Rico.

Le Coq Rico is located on a steep hill in the Montmartre area. The chef is chef Thierry Lébé and the restaurant is owned & consulted by the very famous chef Antoine Westermann. Of course parking in this area is non-existant but they have a voiturier for 8 euros. We for sure will pay this anytime than spend an hour driving in circles to find a parking spot.

When we entered the restaurant; our friend was sitting by the window with a glass of white wine and absorbing the atmosphere. To our right was the open roasting area with a long & narrow counter dinning area. It looked liked all the people were enjoying themselves. We joined our friend with a glass of wine while waiting for your table to be prepared.

We shared the first starter; White asparagus...which was in season (22.00 euros...ouch). Its always a treat to return to France at this time because of the white asparagus. Though its more expensive; do not mind splurging once a season to enjoy these white jems.

The second starter we shared...Chicken liver pâté (14.oo euros). The home made chicken liver pâté had a rough & chunky texture from but tons of flavour.

The wine we shared was a 2010 Saint-Joseph by Alain Graillot. The wine had a pale ruby colour, beautiful spice & red berry aromas, good acidity and tannins and nice long finish. A rich & fresh wine to accompany the chicken.

Very kind of the restaurant; they offered us Chicken consommé with scallops. The consommé was light in colour but had loads of tastes. This was a nice way to water our appetite and prepare our tastes buds for the main dish of chicken.

For the main dish; we shared a Volaille Géline (95.00 euros). The sides that arrived with the chicken were macaroni gratin, french fries, salad and grilled vegetables. The sides were very good.

The chicken was outstanding! The chicken was moist, tender & juicy. The skin was crispy (which was so so so good). The chicken was stuffed with garlic to give it tons of flavour (too bad my friend is allergic to garlic but this once he suffered because the chicken was so good).

Overall; I did not mind the modern & minimalism decor of the main dinning room...but it could have been any character and easy to forget. It was very white; from the walls, columns, table tops. Black chairs and tables broke the white coldness. The wooden floors added more warmth to the place. But; the harsh white lighting was harsh. It was too bright; it was good for my photos, but really did not add any atmosphere for dining.

The male wait person was friendly and attentive when we arrived; he asked if we wanted a glass of wine while waiting and joked with us.

The food was very yummy...especially the chicken. The sides were also very good; but I felt they could have been more generous with them. If the concept is a whole meal that is shared by four people; in my opinion, it should have seemed that a feast arrived at the table and not some starters to accompany the chicken.

I have read a few reviews of people who have eaten at Le Coq Rico and complained about the expense of eating here. I would have to disagree. A meal for four (three in our case) people at 95 euros is not bad at all when you split it into four. There was indeed a lot of food for normal eaters (I just eat more than the normal person so I complain a lot of stingy portions).

I really liked Le Coq Rico just for the simple fact that they roast the perfect chicken...what a simple reason to return again and again.

Address: 99 rue Lepic
75018 Paris


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