Wednesday, August 31, 2011

La Crèmerie (Paris, France)

We wanted to have lunch at Le Comptoir at St. Germain (one of 'THE' bistros in town). But first, we parked the car at Le Bon Marché to take a look at the épicerie (it is something we always do when we are in Paris). We walked from Le Bon Marché to St. Germain. After a nice walk, passing Eglise St. Sulpice, when we turned around the corner, we were shocked to see a queue of people waiting for a table at Le Comptoir. There are no reservations at Le Comptoir; its first come first serve. It looked like it would take at least an hour before we would get a table.

We were too hungry to queue for a table. But my friend remembered that there was a quaint little restaurant 50 meters away. The place is called La Crèmerie. It is a very well known secret among the foodies who want very good but very simple food. We were very lucky that there was a table available for us and we were actually glad that Le Comptoir was too busy. It gave us a chance to finally try La Crèmerie.

La Crèmerie get its name because the restaurant used to be a crèmerie. There are still traces of it's former glory as a crèmerie such as cows on the faux stained ceiling (which was very cute by the way).

La Crèmerie is a very small place. It has only five tables and a counter with four high stools. There are sausages & hams hanging, there are wines on the walls and there are canned and preserved foods on the shelves.

The concept of the place is that first of all...the food is to be shared. No single dishes exist or is allowed. The portions are copious. The food served are cold cuts, smoked fish or meats, pates, cheeses, etc. There is no cooking involved. However; the food that is served is supposedly the very 'best' that France has to offer. Therefore; the prices are a bit higher.

The first dish was Smoked Tuna with crème fraîche (19 euros). This has been the first time we had smoked tuna in Paris and it was an amazing treat. The tuna was so tender and flavourful.

The second dish was Ham (24 euros). We could not believe the amount of ham that arrived at our table but no one was complaining that was for sure.

Display of some of the food they serve in the restaurant.

The very nice design & atmosphere of La Crèmerie.

Overall; we really felt like we were in Paris. This is really a homey, cozy & unique restaurant in the St. Germain area. The owner who was working also as the 'chef' if you can call him that; and I am supposing the lady serving was his wife were very easy going about the whole thing. It was really like eating in their home.

The prices seem high but as mentioned, the owner only serves the very best hams, sausages, cheeses, smoked meats & fishes, etc. etc. that France has to offer. At the same time; the portions are so big that as you can see; we could only eat two dishes for our lunch...and we were stuffed (well the delicious bread & fresh butter also helped in doing that).

Opening hours: Monday to Saturday - 10h to 22h. Closed Sunday and Monday
Address: 9, rue des Quatre Vents, Paris 75006
Métro: Odeon
Telephone: 01 43 54 99 30

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Septime (Paris, France)

We decided already where we wanted to eat our first dinner back in Paris...Septime. A friend of ours tweeted that he just ate at Septime and that it was one of the best meals he has ever had in Paris. Our friend is a very trusted foodie, so with a 'tweet' like that...we had to try Septime.

There's plenty of buzz around this new restaurant from young chef Bertrand Grébault, who climbed the ranks at L'Arpège before going on to earn a star at his own at Agapé at the tender age of 27. He was awarded a 10,000 euro grant from Evian-Badoi to realize his vision for Septime, where he hopes to "democratize" haute cusine (

The decor was post industrial ambiance with a simple bistro flare. Wooden tables and chairs with strategic mood lighting but candles on each table added warmth to the room.

We chose the 5 course menu at 55 euros.

The first dish was Tuna from St. Jean de Luze with mousse of cucumber and capers with lemon. The tuna was so fresh and had a vibrant red colour, at first I thought it looked like watermelon slices. The tuna had such a lovely texture and the mousse of cucumber added the sweetness and capers with lemon added the acidity, sourness and saltiness to the tuna. Just lovely.

The second dish was Squid with leeks in squid ink and grilled chorizo. The squid was so fresh and tender. The leeks added a slight bitterness and the chorizo added saltiness. A great combination of flavours.

The third dish was Merlu with broccoli and mousse of pumpkin. The merlu was cooked perfectly. It had a great texture and taste. Such a simple dish but the seasonal flavours & colours really stood out.

The fourth dish was Poularde jaune cooked two different ways with cream of corn, radish balls and grilled bell pepper. The two different cooking ways made this dish very interesting. The poularde was so tender & juicy. The accompanying sides were light in texture but amazingly powerful in flavour.

I had the dessert which was Chocolate fondant with vanilla ice cream. Back to over clever dessert here. The chocolate was of very good quality and the fondant was cooked just perfectly. With the slight touch of my spoon, the melted chocolate oozed slowly onto the plate. A great sight to behold...and taste.

My friend had the special cheese selection. The cheeses were of very good quality, texture and taste. I did forget to ask from which region the cheeses came from.

Even though the restaurant was full...the open kitchen which was amazingly quiet & calm...for all that delicious food coming out it. Very zen!

Overall; this indeed was one of the great meals we have had in Paris. Septime is one of the leaders of a new movement in Paris that focuses on the ingredients and the soul of the food itself. With the culinary genius and an approach to cooking that breathes life into traditional French cooking, chef Grébault is already a favourite of many foodies.

On top of the food, the service of the highest standards. It is rare to come across service that is a total combination of professionalism yet genuine, helpful, friendly, knowledgeable (of the food and especially of the wines) and finally even have a sense of humour...very rare indeed.

The total combination of the most delicious food, reasonable prices, great ambiance and superb service...Septime is now on our regular 'to eat' list!

Address: 80, rue de Charonne, Paris 75011
Telephone: +33 1 43 67 38 29
Métro : Charonne

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


We decided to go see the newly opened community mall on Rama 9 road...The Nine.

Here is how BK Magazine describes The Nine: "Tropical garden-esque and village-themed, The Nine is a semi-outdoor complex with three sections: the Market Village, the West Village and the East Village. But while The Nine has numerous exciting options for eating and drinking, it just can’t compete on the shopping front".

After walking around the mall and looking at all the restaurants; we decided to eat at Toh-Tiew-Toon.

Toh-Tiew-Toon is a Thai Suki restaurant; where you cook your meat & vegetables at your table. The decor is minimalist; creamy white walls with blonde wood & steel legged tables and benches. The tables are cleverly designed with hot pots build into the tables.

So; the idea is you choose either a la carte or set menu. We chose one real Kurobuta pork set (280 baht) and one imported Chuck Eye beef set (280 baht).

The sets included fresh vegetables and herbs to put into the broth. The vegetables & herbs added a nice flavour to the broth and texture to the dish.

The real Kurobuta pork and the pork broth.

The imported Chuck eye beef and the beef broth.

The sets also included rice noodles topped with garlic.

Toh-Tiew-Toon was having a special promotion. If you ordered two sets; you get one 'chuck eye or wagyu beef'. So we took the wagyu beef since we already ordered the chuck eye.

The special home-made sauce. It was really tasty...but really spicy (which was a good thing).

The pork & beef broths starting to we were ready to cook...and we could not wait eat!!!

Overall; the restaurant was very easy-going & cozy. The meats were very fresh and tasty. Both the pork & beef broths were rich & flavourful. The vegetables & herbs were fresh and crisp. The service was good and the prices were very very reasonable. With a combination like wonder Toh-Tiew-Toon was packed when we were there.

Address: 999, 999/1-4 Rama 9 Rd (second floor)
Phone: 02-716-7845

Sunday, August 14, 2011

D-Sens (guest Chef Girard from Whisk Mira Hotel Hong Kong)

We decided to splurge for dinner and reserved a table at D-Sens at the Dusit Thani hotel because they had a special guest chef in town. Chef Girard from the very famous Whisk...the critically acclaimed fine dining French restaurant at the Mira Hotel in Hong Kong was cooking from the 10 - 14 August.

Here is a clip about the chef of the Asia Tatler: Chef William Girard has worked at some of the finest restaurants in France: Le Bristol, L’Elysee and Taillevent are just a couple. More recently, he was working at the Al Mahara, the Burj Al Arab Dubai’s fine dining restaurant. His cooking philosophy is contemporary French with an Asian twist and he always makes sure not to mix more than three flavours in a dish. Chef Girard hails from the French Basque country.

There was a choice between a 5-course Découverte Menu at 2,400 baht + + and a 7-course Découverte Menu at 2,900 baht + +. Of course we took the 7-course (we are gluttons).

The amuse bouche was a fois gras cream.

The first dish was Tourteaux Crab Cannelloni (avocado, tomato, mango).

The second dish was Steamed Escargot (spinach, red radish, horseradish).

The third dish was Green Asparagus Velouté (smoked salmon maki, quail egg, pistachio pesto).

We were pleasantly surprised that the chef decided to give us one extra dish to the fourth dish was Pan fried scallop (caviar, celery purée).

The wine we decided to pair with the food (which was mainly seafood) was a 2000 La Grande Année Bollinger Champagne. The Bollinger La Grande Année is much more than a simple vintage. It is the interpretation of an outstanding grape harvest. La Grande Année had a majestic feel to it (small bubbles are a good thing), and was intense, rich and had complex aromas...the Bollinger paired so well with the seafood. Tasting a bottle of La Grande Année added to the memorable experience of the evening.

The fifth dish was Maine Lobster (celeriac, raisin, curry emulsion).

The sixth dish was Turbot from Atlantique (zucchini, aioli, Bouillabaisse sauce).

The seventh dish was M4 Wagyu Beef Sirloin “Rossini” (spinach subric, maxim’s truffle potato).

The red wine that accompanied the meat dish was a 2000 Le Merle Aux Alouettes by Alain Chabanon. Today Chabanon is rightly regarded as one of Languedoc’s greatest producer. Le Merle is made from very low-yielding Merlot, and Grenache with a long maceration followed by 24 months in barrique. The 2000 Le Merle was a deep, vivid red colour. The wine was still rich, spicy, dusty nose is distinctively southern France even for a 2000. Quite a chunky, spicy palate with rich fruit and good tannins. Oh one more thing, the 2000 Le Merls was sooooo yummy! Am I allowed to describe wine like that?

The eight dish was Vanilla Mille-feuille “A La Minute” (raspberry sweets & raspberry ice-cream)

Petit fours (lemon tart, lavender marshmallow, chocolate truffle & pistachio macaroon) to accompany the tea or coffee.

Overall; the total experience was very nice. The newly decorated D-Sens now has a better feel to it. It is more cozy, intimate & refined but yet has kept is modernity & has a slight edginess to it. The new colour scheme is calming with ivory, beige, white & cream. The design & architecture is a mix of straight lines yet are broken up with strategic curves...a good contrast. The service was very professional and very good.

The food was the star of the evening. Chef Girard has an amazing talent to wake up the senses with his beautifully crafted food. When the dishes were brought out to the tables; they were a beautiful sight & had pleasant aromas. At the first bite, all the amazing flavours and textures hit the taste buds with a delightful bang. Truly lovely.

Address: 946 Rama IV Road, Bangkok 10500
Phone: 66 (0) 2200 9000

Friday, August 05, 2011


We decided to have lunch at Kuu because they have a very good dish that we like to eat. Kuu is at the very popular K-Village.

The main dinning room was full so we were seated in the back dinning room, which was not bad at all because there was much more natural lighting. The decor is simple and main colour scheme was grey, brown, ivory & black.

My dish was Tonkatsu Ramen (180 baht). The tonkatsu ramen consisted of thick pork bone broth ramen with a deep fried pork cutlet on the side. This broth was rich in flavour and had a smooth texture. The condiments of bamboo, half egg and seaweed added texture and flavour. The tonkatsu that accompanied the dish was nicely deep fried to a golden brown. It was very crispy & flaky on the outside but tender & moist on the inside.

My friend's dish was Kuu Ramen (180 baht). The Kuu ramen consisted of spicy chili and sesame ramen soup served with deep fried pork & minced pork. When the dish was served; we noticed that it was not the normal Kuu ramen that we normally order. Normally; the dish has a deep red colour to indicate the spicy chili and the ground pork was missing from the dish as well.

We called the waitress to complain and told her we have had this dish many time but we don't know what the dish was in front of us was. So; we told her to take back this dish and replace it with what we ordered.

This was the second Kuu ramen that was served. This was the right colour (deep blood red) and spiciness level. We don't know what happened in the kitchen. We noticed that the Japanese chef was not there, perhaps he was on holiday. Therefore, that is probably why there was no 'quality control' when the dishes were leaving the kitchen.

Overall; Kuu's atmosphere & decor is pretty nice, the space is good in terms of volume and height. The service is a bit off balance. The staff is friendly enough; but they need more training. The menus were falling apart and the drink menu was in a disgusting condition. The food is good (when they get it right). We have had better ramen; but the Kuu ramen are unique and that is why we keep returning to Kuu; but they will need to watch the 'quality control' of the food that comes out of the kitchen even when the Japanese chef is not around or they will start losing us.

address: K-Village, 1st floor, zone A, Sukhumvit soi 26
Bangkok, 10110
phone: 02-661-3840