Authentic French Cuisine At Le Restaurant De PAUL, City

25 Jun 2016

Occasionally, with French cuisine there is a cross to bear, a cross in the form of tables tucked under gingham dining cloths, cramped seating arrangements, over spilt candle wax, buckling table legs and pictures of ‘Chat Noir’ lining the walls. Le Restaurant de Paul with its stylish interior in primary colours is exactly the opposite.

The trend pursuing copper bulbs and matt black desk lamps, create an intense atmosphere and the mirror, mirror on the wall in the bathroom screams ‘selfie’ with an illusion of lights travelling to a far off Galaxy (check it out, I promise it will make the Instagram cut). Situated only a few moments away from Bank underground station, the restaurant makes a welcomed pit stop for the office workers in the area.

The promise of French patisserie and traditional baking methods was something I hoped they would live up to, and the disappointment of the restaurant not being on floor 42 of Tower 42 slips away like a spoilt child being distracted from danger with a shiny new toy when stepping inside.

The dishes were unpretentious and tasty, there was a confidence in the preparation that reserved the need for a hocus pocus of ingredients and the presentation on the self-branded plates was adorable. As you would expect the menu was a combination of well- known French dishes including the pre-requisite delicacy of snails.

Opting for the less creepy starters of Pate de Lapin (rabbit pate) and Saumon Fume (smoked salmon) which arrived at the table promptly, each one holding their own with delicate flavours and comfortable portion sizes.

For second course, the Salade Parisienne was simplicity at its best with spinach and perfectly cooked button mushrooms tucked under thinly sliced duck breast. The modest sized dish was in hindsight an excellent choice, as it left room for the main attraction and star of the show – dessert.

The Pain Perdu Myrtille a l’Anglaise (bread and butter pudding) rocked my world and like any morning after a good night before, I awoke dreaming of the potted thing and wanting it all over again for breakfast. The moat of custard surrounding a castle of bread freckled with blueberries was fun and sophisticated, just like its rival on the menu: the Banana Split. A banana dressed in glazed sugar turned a childish dessert into a dish fit for any king.

An early night in the week brings a more reserved dining experience and the luxury of being able to hear your own voice (and the person you are dining with, depending on the company you keep) is a rarity and bonus in this district of the capital. There is terrific house wine and classic cocktails crowned with culinary twists of, basil, violet, cardamom seeds, pepper and thyme to help you press that ‘snooze’ button repeatedly the next morning.

If you feel the cold, then I would opt for a seat away from the window, and the large side door does add a certain nuisance when people use this an alternative exit (how dare they hey) with a ground shaking bang. This however can be easily ignored in the effortlessly French restaurant that is welcoming with attentive staff that aren’t overbearing.

Le Restaurant de Paul is home to classic dishes cooked well. Would I go here again? Oui, oui, oui.


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