The first day in Paris was a long one. I left my house in Kentucky at 6:30 a.m. and arrived the next day in Paris at 8:15 a.m. I was eager to begin the trip. All of the hours, days, weeks, and months of researching restaurants, bars, museums, and maps amounted to a jumble of information waiting to get a chance to be utilized effectively. Unfortunately, dealing with a lack of sleep for days leading up to the trip coupled with a textbook case of jet lag, my time might not have been used as efficiently as normal. However, this is Paris we are talking about so I tried to relax without relaxing too much and anticipated the first dinner, that just so happened to be scheduled much too late that night.
8:45 p.m. finally came and we made it to Josephine Chez Dumonet. I was accompanied by exhaustion and quite a buzz from hitting cafes en route to dinner in order to waste time in a non-active sort of way. We were seated in the front section of the restaurant. The doors were open as it was a very pleasant evening. The restaurant was packed and seemed to have more English speaking diners than French, although there was a mix of both. We were greeted with a glass of white wine and gazpacho. The gazpacho was really nice. It seemed like you could pick out every single vegetable that went into the dish although it was pureed as smoothly as a cream sauce.
For the entrée, I chose the foie gras. It was a very simple presentation. 2 huge slabs of buttery smooth foie gras encased by butter and served with grilled bread. I knew I wanted to order this dish months before I got to say the words to the waiter and it did not fail to impress me. It was everything I thought it would be.
The plat was a bit more difficult to choose. I knew the recommendations were duck confit and boeuf bourguignon and I kept going back and forth debating which one would suit me better. The waiter approached and asked what I would like. Lingering a bit, I said, “Foie gras and … the pigeon millefeuille. I am not sure what caused the disconnect from my brain to my mouth but I need to start ordering that way from now on. The pigeon was served rare and it was in between layers of thin, crunchy potatoes with a red wine and garlic reduction. This dish was seasoned perfectly and the meat couldn’t have been cooked better. I thought this was one of the best dishes of the entire trip. It would definitely make my top 5 of the week.
I finished with the Grand Marnier soufflé. When it arrived, the soufflé continued to tower above the dish that was meant to contain it. It was as high as Texas hair on a Saturday night. Although I have had this dessert at many different restaurants in the past, this one is the new benchmark. What can you really say about a soufflé? It was light, pillowy and absolutely delicious.
*The entire meal, for 2, was 160 euros. We did have a bottle of wine with the meal but that was a total blur. I wanted to order a bottle of dessert wine with the foie but the sentiment was not shared due to exhaustion.