When anyone writes a headline like "Le Baratin: Best restaurant in Paris?" you/he know(s) it's going to draw fire, like the brave WWII GI's in Hollywood movies who left the bunker to deceive the nasty Nazis and allow their comrades to eliminate them. The trouble with this sort of teaser is that, especially with M. Simon, one doesn't know whether he's being sarcastic, sardonic, solipsistic or sadistic.
But to mix metaphores; saying that sort of thing, is like throwing meat to the wolves, even when tempered by his 4th sentence stating that it's impossible to declare a place as the "best restaurant in Paris", as it was years ago, because comparisons with the neighborhood trattoria, sushi-joint or adorable South-West bistro are impossible to make. But the raw meat is there, wolves gotta go.
The ardoise is incredible - 18 E for (I think) 6 firsts, 3 mains and 3 desserts or cheese.
In any case Paga, facing his last meal after a month, didn't have to convince me much to go back there after a five year hiatus. (P.S. Only afterwards did I check the archives and see that in 2006 when "everyone" "discovered" it after it had hidden for 20 years in the deepest 20th, I found it merited only a 5.25 and never returned.) Madame had the beet salad topped with chopped eggs, M. the museau vinaigrette and I the best of the three, chicken livers topped with tasteless chopped peanuts and salad.
Mains were an OK cocotted veal with rice and a so-so rable of lapin with mushrooms, a lot of carrots and a fine gratin of cauliflower.
The finale consisted of an OK St Nectaire and OK creme caramel.
Our bill for three meals, no bottled water, quite miserable bread, three coffees and a bottle of wine (we did not order the temptingly named Yoyo Banyuls) would come to 87 E for 3, thus 58 E a couple.
Go? To the "Best" restaurant in Paris for 87 E a couple sure, but the Baratin, not so.