5.05 Chene Vert, 99 Rue de Provence, 01.40.23.52.31, closed Sunday (when its host, Galeries Lafayette is). The easiest way to enter is from the GF wine shop and you find yourself suddenly in a restaurant not a department store.
There is modern but not goofy furniture and superb service. The place is under the wing of David Van Laer whose food I liked at Maxence + Manufacture before that. It’s a nice menu but, as I was warned, a bit pricey, 45 € for the 3 course menu, but the wines are more reasonably priced (from 15-35 €).
The amuse gueules looked “standard” but were superb. I didn’t like the choices on the carte, my companion had trouble deciding, but I was saved by the market menu.
I started with the soup of lobster and lentils and diced undercooked (properly) veggies, she had a “minute” of tuna that was vastly over-cooked (the waiter apologetically said that’s the way the clientele (who, like Galeries Lafayette customers, are a mixed lot) like it – we didn’t, although the accompanying salad was good.
Then I had sweetbreads with crunchy asparagus that was quite good; interestingly, her Iberian pork tasted more like superbly toasted on the outside, raw on the inside, slices of cote de boeuf than pork – it came with swiss chard and a butter croquette.
Finally, I had the dessert special where the pineapple was terrific, the mango sorbet OK but the Magnolias-type shot glass full of a layered thing, was “so what?”
Total = 110 €; do it again? I don’t think so.
*Originally published in September 2006