6.8 Les Artizans, 30, rue Montorgueil in the 1st, 01.40.28.44.74, 7/7, (Metro: Les Halles) is one of those place one walks by on the rue Montorgueil and thinks (at least I do) "Oh, one more fungible red façade Metro-pushing joint." But no, this place, ex-L'Epicerie, is not the same old same old. It's the real thing as the Coca-Cola ad used to say.
My dining partner, between train from Provence and plane to the USA had gazpacho which for the weather (87) was perfect and I had beignets of gambas that doubting Thomas I, made sure were made in house. Both were way above the level of the chow being dished out up and down the street.
For main courses, my partner chose the Cesar salad which she ate all of and I had the lamb shoulder which was really mutton shoulder with baby potatoes and a terrific sauce; the pot of which was placed on a tree slice which, next to slate has become the fashionable trivet in Paris.
Desserts are temptingly displayed in a huge vitrine and my dining partner chose two macaroons and I something called a caramelon that was in a word" divine." So much so that I ordered one for dinner tonight.
Our bill, with a bottle of wine, one of water and two coffees, was 118.90 E.
Go? Well, with Pirouette and AG Les Halles around the corner, it's a tough call, but this is a sure #3 after them and it's open on Sundays.