43 Boulevard Raspail (6)
2018-2019 has not been the best year for Paris. The Yellow Vest protests have been disruptive and disturbing, but one high note has been the reopening following five years of reconstruction of the Hotel Lutetia on the Left Bank.
Now this part of Paris (one block from Le Bon Marche department store, whose original owners first built the hotel in the 19th Century) has a grand hotel equal in every way to the Right Bank Five Star palais in an arguably better location.
In Paris, grand hotels now feature Michelin-starred restaurants. The Lutetia is trying with two.
The Brasserie is overseen by Gerald Passedat, a 3 Star chef from Marseilles. His seafood restaurant there, Le Petite Nice, inspires the Brasserie menu.
This is the more casual restaurant of the Lutetia. Modern and elegant, but at once casual, chic, friendly and relaxed. A seafood bar featuring shellfish platters, plus a small a la carte menu, plus a single set menu featuring the chef’s signature, more modern take on traditional bouillabaisse.
Our meal began with a small portion of mushroom flavored fish broth. Delicate; refreshing, exceptional. This was followed by a small portion of Tempura-style calamari with parsley sauce.
Then the fish soup. The soup served separately from the broth. The fish cooked in a light broth with potatoes. The diner is expected to add it piece by piece to the soup, to add croutons with grated cheese, and in place of the traditional garlic mayonnaise aioli, a tomato concasse.
Delicious dessert was a surprisingly refreshing combination of celery, cucumber, kiwi and yogurt sherbet. A wonderful meal.
Mixed wine prices. Our 60€ Burgundy at the lower end. The menu 95€.
This may be the second restaurant, but like everything else about the Lutetia, it is top notch.