Paris, France: Les Cocottes de Christian Constant

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 0 No tags Permalink 0

A few doors down from Café Constant is another one (of three) Christian Constant restaurants which line Rue Saint-Dominique. This one is called Les Cocottes and it’s my favorite of the trio…and reasonably priced with appetizers about 10€ and mains from 15€-25. No reservations, not even clipboards, and often a wait. The bar seats are best. Soft lighting, great views, a basket of bread and glasses of red wine to begin.

Here most dishes are served in cast-iron Staub cocottes (hence the restaurant name) and secured onto a wooden board by strong magnets. As far as brands go, I prefer Staub over Le Creuset, so you can imagine how happy this made me. First up, a “Caesar” Salad that was far from traditional. Iceberg lettuce, chicken – more dark meat than white, hard boiled eggs, parmesan, and a thick, creamy and garlic-heavy dressing. Use the baguettes to mop up the extra dressing.

But do save room for the Foie Gras, a delicate terrine finished with a crack of pepper and fleur de sel. A decidedly better version than the one we had at their sister restaurant, Café Constant a few nights before.

Balance with a hot cocotte of Seasonal Baby Vegetables, quickly stir-fried, hinting of garlic and chili flakes. Satisfying and clean with sweet summer peas and juicy tomatoes. Dig deeper to find little carrots, stems and all, alongside broccoli and slightly charred cauliflower.

Then there was Dorade, grilled tender and meaty, and paired with a chunky olive tapenade and trio of braised endives. Baguettes came in handy once more, an easy soak in that savory, loose sauce mixed with tapenade.

And to finish, an eggy and still steaming Cherry Clafouti, which Pierre shunned, declaring that his mom makes a better version. But for someone who grew up on malassadas and shave ice, having never met a clafouti till my late teens, this in all its’ creamy, pudding-like glory with a crunchy crust, was not half-bad ;)

Les Cocottes de Christian Constant

139 Rue Saint-Dominique

75007 Paris, France

01 47 53 73 34

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