First of all, I need to preface this blog post by stating that all pictures were taken by Diane. I only had my iPhone and the pictures did not turn out in the dim-lit Frenchie. Plus, let’s face it– my photography skills can’t compare to her skills.
I’ve read a lot about Frenchie (5-6 Rue de Nil) and there’s been a lot of hype surrounding the restaurant. I’ve heard mixed things about the actual restaurant and better things about the casual wine bar across the street. When Diane suggested we dine at the wine bar, I jumped at the chance to judge the food for myself.
The dishes at Frenchie are small and meant to be shared. The wine bar doesn’t take reservations so I don’t recommend going with a large party (two people is actually the optimal number). We started the meal with the burrata cheese with wild mushrooms, endives au jambon and foie gras royale. The burrata wasn’t my favorite because I felt like it was lacking some flavor (burrata at Beretta in SF is better). The endives with ham and cheese and truffle oil was a really interesting combination. My favorite dish out of the three was the foie gras royale. It was topped with an apple/pear chutney and walnuts. The consistency was so incredibly smooth and almost like a whipped texture. I’ve never had foie gras like that before and I loved it.
For our main dishes, we ordered the tête du cochon, roasted quail and the tortelli. The tête du cochon was so incredibly tender and seriously broke apart as soon as you pierced your fork into it. I was completely blown away by the roasted quail and tortelli though. The roasted quail was served with a mashed potato and Jerusalem artichoke purée that I could not get enough of (again, it was this crazy whipped texture). The ricotta tortelli is one of the best things I’ve eaten in Paris. It was served al dente and had a wonderful savory and sweet combination. The sweet flavors came from the the butternut squash filling and crushed ameretti biscuits that topped the dish.
We ended the meal with the avocado panna cotta, which was a wonderful palate cleanser. While it’s not my favorite panna cotta, I still enjoyed having something light and refreshing to end the wonderful time I had at Frenchie.
Frenchie is the best meal I’ve had in Paris. I think I liked it because it also reminded me of food that I could find back in California. Considering that the chef, Gregory Marchand, used to work at NY’s Gramercy Tavern, you can definitely see the influence in his cooking. The menu changes often because it’s based on the local produce. I can’t wait to go back and will gladly accompany anyone who wants to try Frenchie!