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Our First Dinner in Paris

We took an impromptu trip to Paris last month. We spent a week there and, though it wasn't enough time, managed to pack a lot in. As summer turns to August, we'll be posting every now and then about some of our favorite moments/meals/pictures from across the pond. Let's start with dinner our first night there.

It happened around midnight after a few bottles of rose on the roof at Le Perchoir, where we watched the sun set over Montmartre and our love affair with Paris began. We walked down Le Perchoir's vast, spiral staircase to ground level and headed north to Rue Oberkampf. That's where we found L'Estaminet. The restaurant is open late, which is rare for Paris. The menu, full of French classics and bristrot fare, is not.

Foie gras ravioli in truffle cream. When in Rome Paris.. Why not order the most indulgent thing on the menu?

Steak tartare. Certainly not the best, but we didn't expect it to be. Tartare was originally served with tartar sauce, which is where the dish gets its name. L'Estaminet serves the modern (early 20th Century) version with raw egg. It's also deconstructed, with parsley, ginger, and raw onion served on the side so you can mix those ingredients with the beef as you see fit.

Steak with aligot, which are mashed potatoes with butter, cream, garlic, and a heavy dose of cheese melted into them. The consistency is fondue-like, and the flavor is rich and salty. Aligot traditionally accompany pork, but beef is a fine substitute.

Downstairs dining room

L'Estaminet | 116 Rue Oberkampf | 33 1 43 57 34 29 | www | map

Le Perchoir | 14 Rue Crespin du Gast | 33 1 48 06 18 48 | www | map

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