Browsing Tag

Yannick Alléno

Paris, Restaurants

Bistrot Terroir Parisien-Palais Brongniart de Yannick Alléno

Celebrated French chef Yannick Alléno brings a modern touch to traditional Parisian cuisine with the second outpost of his Bistrot Terroir Parisien at the stately Palais Brongniart.

Opened late last year in the Paris Bourse former stock exchange building, the Right Bank restaurant offers reinterpreted classic dishes with a focus on the finest ingredients sourced from producers within Île-de-France – a real ‘farm to table’ experience.

Yannick Alléno made his name in the restaurants of Paris’ most exclusive luxury hotels (notably at Le Meurice where he gained his third Michelin star), but Bistrot Terroir Parisien signals a brave new direction and approach to cooking.

His signature haute cuisine can still be enjoyed at the palatial Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild and Cheval Blanc in Courchevel, but at Bistrot Terroir Parisien, it’s all about hearty, honest food, cooked with emotion to evokes positive memories.

Bistrot Terroir Parisien-Palais Brongniart is informal and lively with a modern yet homely feel.  At the front of the restaurant is a small food market with shelves full of tempting produce such as gourmet biscuits, juices, oils, vinegar, dried herbs and lentils.

Foodies will be delighted by the Rillettes Bar, which offers artisanal charcuterie, cheeses and deli items, plus an apéro bag to take out for a decadent picnic.

When I visited with my mother, the restaurant was buzzing with a mix of clued-up tourists and an after-work Parisian crowd.  We were greeted warmly and seated at a table close to the central bar with a good view of the open kitchen.

We ordered from the varied menu and then asked our friendly waiter to recommend a light red wine.  We were brought glasses of a  fruity, smooth and very easy to drink Bourgognes and a basket of fresh, crusty  baguette and French butter.

I started with the Poached Langoustines in a Watercress and Herb Jelly (€17).  A generous amount of plump, fresh langoustines were covered in a tangy cream sauce with watercress and lots of aromatic tarragon.  The tasty sauce perfectly complemented the seafood and I couldn’t resist mopping it up with a few slices of baguette.

All dishes at Bistrot Terroir Parisien are simply presented on modest china, avoiding the grand flourishes and that you’d expect from a Michelin star chef.  This may be a surprise for die-hard fans of Yannick Alléno, but in the context of the restaurant’s philosophy, it makes sense.

My mum went for a warming Pumpkin Soup with Viltain Farm Fresh Cream (€9).  The simple, classic pumpkin soup was slow-cooked and satisfying, served with a little pot of fresh cream on the side.

For my main course, it had to be the French classic of Peppered Beef with Home-made French Fries (€26).  This is the kind steak that I always dream of eating in Paris when only a meat fix will do.

The thick, succulent medium-cooked fillet of beef was tender, lean and covered with crush black peppercorns.  It was served with a lightly creamy peppercorn sauce mixed with juices from the meat.  The beef came with a cone of hot, crispy French fries, seasoned with just the right amount of salt.  It was the best steak I’ve eaten in a long time and every mouthful was a true delight.

Happily, my mum ordered Petites Endives au Jambon (€19), which I had been tempted to try.  It was a homely, rustic dish with soft, pleasantly bitter oven-grilled chicory and juicy Paris ham smothered in rich béchamel, Gruyère and plenty of ground nutmeg.

The portion size was very generous, particularly for such an indulgent dish, so I was lucky enough to grab a few forkfuls for myself (in exchange for some frites, of course).

For a light end to the meal, I ordered the delectable Île Flottante with Nemours Caramel (€10).  Usually in Paris I can’t resist a decadent fondant au chocolat, but this dessert was just so dreamy, sweet and perfectly sized.

The delicate dome of meringue floated on silky, vanilla-scented crème anglaise and was drizzled with a sticky caramel sauce.

My mum’s Nanterre Brioche French Toast with Vanilla Ice Cream (€10) was a much more indulgent, hearty affair.  The enormous wedge of moist, buttery brioche was nicely caramelised on the outside with a crunchy sugar crust.  Vanilla ice cream on a bed of biscuit crumbs had a delicious home-made taste and was the perfect accompaniment.

When visiting Paris, I’m often torn between a craving for typical French food and checking out more innovative offerings from noted chefs.  Bistrot Terroir Parisien bridges the two, offering mouthwatering dishes with the flair of a renowned chef – best of all, at wallet-friendly prices.

Staff were so friendly and efficient and I liked the large open dining room and unpretentious atmosphere.  I can see Bistrot Terroir Parisien becoming a modern classic in Paris and I can’t wait to return to try more of Yannick Alléno’s comforting creations.

For more information and booking, visit:

Chérie City was invited by Bistro Terroir Parisien 

Photos by Chérie City and Bistro Terroir Parisien

Afternoon tea, Hotels, Hotels - Luxury, Paris, Patisserie

La Galette Des Reines At Le Meurice, Paris

January in France means the return of the delicious traditional Galette des Rois.  Made from layers of puff pastry and an almond paste filling, the seasonal galette marks the feast of Epiphany and features a charm hidden within.  The lucky person who finds the charm, or fève, becomes king or queen for the night.

Iconic palace hotel Le Meurice in Paris instead celebrates ‘the queen’ for 2013 with a colourful Galette des Reines, served in Le Dali restaurant.  Created by pastry chef Camille Lesecq, the galette is made in the shape of an almond and is covered with leaves gilded with gold.

The person with the lucky slice of the Galette des Reine will find a golden almond-shaped charm.  Who wouldn’t want to be the king or queen of Le Meurice for the day!

La Galette des Reines is served in Le Dali until 20th January and is priced at 14 Euros per slice.

For more information, visit:

Hotels, Hotels - Luxury, Paris, Restaurants

Lunch At Le Dali, Le Meurice Paris

Le Dali at Le Meurice is without a doubt one of Paris’ finest restaurants, with three Michelin star chef Yannick Alléno at the helm.

Five star palace hotel Le Meurice has a prestigious Paris location on the Rue de Rivoli, nestled in between iconic monuments Le Louvre and Place de la Concorde, overlooking the Tuilerie Gardens.  A member of The Dorchester Collection, the 19th century hotel contrasts Louis XVI interiors with playful touches of Surrealist artwork.

The French love affair with Surrealism continues at Le Dali, which is the only restaurant authorised to use the name by the Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí.  The connection runs deep, as the legendary artist used to stay at Le Meurice for at least one month per year, keeping the staff on their toes with his eccentric demands.

Le Dali is the more casual sister of the rococo style, gastronomic Restaurant Le Meurice, however, its own grandeur cannot be underplayed.  The elegant mirror panelled room is punctuated with Surrealist furniture and boasts a spectacular ceiling canvas painted by Philippe Starck’s daughter, Ara Starck.  The colour palette of gold, ochre and black, with soft lighting, gives it a decadent, seductive ambiance.

Head Chef Yannick Alléno has overseen the Restaurant Le Meurice and Le Dali since 2003 and has since received the Nation Order of Merit and was elected ‘Best Chef of the Year 2008’ by Chef Magazine.  Alléno is widely known as ‘the chef with the rock star looks’ and there is definitely something rock ‘n’ roll about Le Dali.

The main purpose of my Paris trip was an overnight stay chez Le Meurice’s glamorous sister Hôtel Plaza Athénée and a rare visit to the Hermès Atelier, however, the second part was a dedicated girly day of catching up with Parisian friend Coralie.

Already au fait with the city’s finest establishments, Coralie was the perfect partner to try Yannick Alléno’s new menu, La Cuisine de Palace.  Often, my restaurant reports are from the perspective of a couple, but this time I was testing the patience of staff when encountered with two friends who are always indecisive and always the last to leave.

On arrival, we ordered a few bite-size snacks from the antipasti menu to accompany our drinks – a sensible Diet Coke and fresh fruit smoothie.  The Potato and ham croquettes (€14) were petite, crispy balls filled with strongly-flavoured ham.  The Crispy shrimp fritters (€16) were more like tempura shrimp than fritters, but they were succulent and meaty with a crispy, golden coating.

I started with the Ravioli steamed with citrus, soy sauce (€20).  The large ravioli were served at room temperature and generously filled with rich, well-seasoned minced pork and fresh herbs.  Unlike some ravioli that can be blitzed into sticky submission in the steaming basket, these ones were on the firmer side.  The colorful slices of pink grapefruit and orange added a burst of sweet and tart zestiness, lifting the rich flavour of the filling.

Coralie went for the Avocado and shrimp cocktail salad (€30).  The salad was made of large fresh green leaves, plump marinated shrimps, thick slices of avocado and wedges of citrus fruit.  It was a good size and a refreshing start to the meal.

For the main course, I was tempted by the Spit-roasted free-range chicken (€28) and accompanied it with Home-made French Fries (€6).  Anyone who has ever visited the markets on the rue de Martyrs or the rue Mouffetard on the Left Bank will know that Parisians can cook a mean rotisserie chicken.

Yannick Alléno’s spit-roasted chicken was succulent and juicy with the most delicious crispy, sticky, beautifully seasoned skin.  It was served in its own jus with roasted cloves of garlic and fresh rosemary.  The French Fries were also golden and slim with a slight crunch – just how they should be.

Had I not indulged already at Alain Ducasse au au Plaza Athénée at the beginning of my trip, I might have tried the ‘Best Burger’ of the New York Times, as this is surely worth tasting.

Coralie once again managed to order the healthiest dish on the menu, making me think that there could be some truth in Mireille Guiliano’s book, French Women Never Get Fat.  She tried the Sea bass tartar with ponzu (€27) – fresh raw fish marinated in citrusy ponzu and garnished with fresh herbs and lots of dill.

For dessert, it had to be my favourite Paris cake, the Religieuse.  Young Pastry Chef Camille Lesecq is another long-term fixture at Le Meurice, beginning his career in the kitchens there in 2004.  Voted ‘Pastry Chef of the Year 2010’ by Chef Magazine, Lesecq finds inspiration from tiny pâtisseries that he comes across while rollerblading around Paris.

I tried his delectable Crunchy caramel religieuse pastry (€14).  Covered in crunchy caramel spun sugar and filled with salted caramel crème pâtisserie, this was one intensely caramel dessert.  The choux pastry had a light, springy texture and the crème pâtisserie was cool, silky and just sweet enough.

Coralie’s Roasted rhubarb with vanilla, rosemary panacotta (€14) was another triumph.  The rosemary-infused panacotta was aromatic and creamy and the gold-leaf strawberries added luscious fruitiness to lift the flavours.

We finished with some fresh mint tea and lingered a little longer, never feeling rushed by the wonderful staff.

Another highlight at Le Dali is the delectable afternoon tea, including a selection of finger sandwiches, freshly-baked scones with jams and cream, a selection of pastries and cakes by Camille Lesecq and a choice of fine tea, coffee or hot chocolate.

Le Dali is a truly special restaurant in Paris, bringing together imaginative, superior quality and exceptional service.  Despite its stellar reputation, Le Dali feels like a secret spot among the grandeur of the 1e arrondissement and is the perfect place to revel in Paris’ avant-garde past.

For more information and reservations, visit:

Chérie City was a guest of Le Meurice

All photos by Chérie City (except the exterior and Le Dali by Le Meurice)