Ken pulled a real gem out of Zagat last weekend; Le Caveau du Palais. Everyone wants to eat at a bistro when they visit Paris, but the truth is most "bistros" are crappy French short order restaurants with the exact same menu. Duck confit. Steak with shallots. Broiled bass. Steak tartare. Roasted chicken.

The difference with Le Caveau is it's very very good. The food is prepared with great care and excellent ingredients. The terrine du porc was homemade, they just brought out a big casserole and said "cut yourself as much as you want". My duck confit was one of the best I've had in a very long time, with fanastically garlicky and leathery pommes sarladaise. Ken's chicken breast with cream sauce and morels was perfect as well. Good wine list, too.

It's rare to find a simple bistro that does so well. Benoit is where most people will be sent, and you'll do OK, but Le Caveau felt more like the real thing to me. The location is phenomenal as well, in the middle of the touristy Cité island but in a quiet corner on a handsome square. It felt like the kind of place where all the Parisian ministers go for lunch. On a Saturday night it was very quiet.

  2006-10-23 19:14 Z