5.9 Minimes, 36 rue de Turenne in the 3rd, 01.42.71.36.70, open 7/7 (Metro: Chemin Vert) has barely made a wave in the water since it opened in June - I suspect that's because it's in the Marais which has become a zone interdite for the big boys. But today it was featured in the Journal du Dimanche and heck, I needed a Sunday place since my two dates had pleaded overwork and underimmunity.
*I assumed Minimes referred to it being a cool, trendy, minimalist living room like space; all of which it is; or what Wikipedia suggests - a character in the Austin Powers films, a MiniMe, PCLinuxOS minimal installation, Les Minimes marina in La Rochelle, the Lac des Minimes, a small lake in Paris, or the Stade des Minimes, a rugby league stadium in Toulouse, but it's really just the name of the abutting street which is named after an old convent on the street. What a downer.
The crowd is international and intersexual but even with a large table of Asian-American women with non-Asian SO's, they never raised their voices or used "like." The music is loud American crap, though and the smoke from the sidewalk (excuse me terrace) French-populated tables on two sides was annoying.
As noted elsewhere, it’s another brainchild of Alexandre Chapon, the Danny Meyer of the right bank, (Pamela Popo, Chez Julien, Vin des Pyrenees, Enoteca) who brought over one of the two chefs at the Clocher Pereire, a place Colette and I have loved over the years, Jean-Philippe Leboeuf, to cook. On weekdays it has an incredible 14 E lunch formula but even a la carte has a fine great price-quality ratio.
I started with a gaspacho (as I'm writing this, it's 87 F. in the sun) with gambas croquettes - the gaspacho was the thoroughly blended (I prefer chunky) and under-spiced variety but the gambas were exceptional; then "fish & chips" which were terrific, the fries retaining their crispness long after most would have croaked, but the tartare sauce was not to my taste; and a creme brulee made with limes from Nice - very nice.
Go? In this area, except for the Cafe des Musees across the street, you're not going to find such a nice place.