Monday, 1 February 2016


Top class French Bistro

Benoit, Paris

Alain Ducasse shouldn't be a strange name to any foodies around the world, one of the most successful chefs in his generation, he now owns a global restaurant empire with multi Michlein stars across the world from London to Hong Kong. Benoit in Paris is perhaps one of his most lower profile, traditional 1 Michelin starred restaurant. It is a French bistro with more than 100 years of history, cooking is classic recipes in a proper old school, warm and comfortable atmosphere. Benoit offers a traditional al la carte menu as well as a set lunch menu which cost 39 Euro per person with 3 dishes to chose from each course, not a bad way to experience high level bistro French food.

Comté cheese and artichoke terrine, crispy bacon
Duck rillettes, tangy vegetables

The duck rillettes was an instant winner, the richness and the creamy meat texture were solid without a trace of unpleasant bitterness. The tangy picked vegetables worked like magic with the rillettes to offset the bold taste. ComtĂ© cheese and artichoke terrine was a challenge, but a fun one, it was almost like a Welsh rarebit with crispy bacon acting as the bread crust. The soft nuttiness of the cheese blend in nicely with the artichoke but the portion was seriously big for a starter. I was in love with the pan-seared black pudding, the full on savoury taste was second to none, the seasoning was top notch and it was easily as good as the same version from the 2 starred Le Gavroche in London.

Grenobloise-style skate wing, spinach leaves
Traditional veal blanquette
Pan-seared black pudding two style apples
Armagnac savarin, lightly whipped cream

The set lunch quality from Benoit was truly impressive, no gimmick or beautiful presentation, just rock solid plates of classic French cooking done at a high level. The service, as you would expect from an Alain Ducasse restaurant, was top notch, very charming with a touch of cheeky humour to make our meal a touch more special and memorable. Benoit would be one of those places I would happily revisit if I ever live nearby, London seriously lack any real high quality bistro at an affordable price so I was very thankful I have managed to find such a wonderful restaurant from my Paris trip.

Food 4/5

What I paid: 

£30 per head

Average cost without drinks and services:

£30 lunch menu

£60 dinner menu

20 Rue Saint-Martin, 75004 Paris, France

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