Verjus, Paris

Verjus
I believe in 2009 I started our attempt to get into Hidden Kitchen for dinner.  Over the years I have kept up the email with the owners trying to score a table when were coming to Paris.  When we were there inevitably they wouldn't be.  They took a big leap and moved from the concept of Hidden Kitchen into a full fledged restaurant called Verjus.  Our thread continued and the good news is that they were able to give us a reservation this past week.  And so…we went.

Verjusday
The restaurant is located above the Palais Royale.  A set of steps drop down into the street from the restaurant door.  The windows surrounding the restaurant overlook the steps so it is like a hanging perch.  Upstairs is the restaurant and downstairs is a small wine bar.  Super cute and very Parisian. 

The menu is prix fixe.  You get what you get and you don't get upset is the rule of thumb here.  There is still a feeling of being at someones house for a dinner party.  There are roughly about 30 seats probably less.  Each dish is quite good with a real eye for perfection yet the meals takes a long time.  We opted against the cheese and it took us almost two and a half hours to get through the meal.  So, keep that in mine. 

Potatochpsroe
First thing out was a small bowl of crispy potato chips, trout roe, chives and chive flowers sprinkled over the top and on the bottom was a chive cream.  I kid you not the dish tasted like sour cream onion potato chips. 

Gazpacho
I loved the way this dish looked.  I will be copying it later this summer.  They stacked cut heirloom green and red tomatoes on the side with a small masa cake and used it as a dam.  Then poured in the garden chili gazpacho with microgreens, poppy seeds and almonds on the other side.  The soup was a little heavy with garlic and I am kind of over the foam but it was delicious….and the presentation was beautiful.

Fishmusrhsooms artichoke
Roasted trout with a crispy skin, a small piece of artichoke, pepper relish, shallots and thinly sliced raw chanterelle mushrooms on the bottom.  A nice light dish.

Duck
Sliced duck breaast that was so incredibly delicious.  You wanted to savor each piece.  Served with pieces of orange segment, rye seed, mustard greens and a smoked celery root skin.

Beef
I liked how they sliced the duck but chose to keep the beef whole.  This was served with sweet peas, kombu, heirloom carrots, black cardamon and anchovies. 

Apricots
For dessert, apricots are in season.  Poached apricots served with a pine nut granola, lillet jellies and a lemon verbena yogurt sorbet.  Good summer dessert.

Chocoganache
An intense piece of chocolate ganache served with salted peanut butter mousse, baked grapes and whipped cream.  Can't beat it. 

Really nice meal.  The right aount of food but it definitely took too long.  So glad we were able to go.  A very quaint unique place in Paris.