We returned from Paris last night, and during our stay I had especially wanted to try the Delacourcelle brothers' new restaurant.
For those unfamiliar, they had a wonderful place in the 15th arr. called 'le Clos Morrions' in rue Morrions. It was one of the early fusion restaurants, as the chef/brother spent a lot of time in Southeast Asia and his food reflected it.
Pre' Verre is a bistro, not formal at all. The food is still fusion, though I think M. Delcourcelle is going a little further now. Everything had heavy overtones of cloves, cinnamon, and perhaps nutmeg. Yeah, ok.
I had a delicious soup of pureed chestnuts, and then grilled veal tenderloin with pureed almonds, wild mushroom and string beans. The beans were sadly overcooked, but otherwise the dish was acceptable. The almonds, well -- a bit odd, and not particularly almond-y or well-paired with the veal. This is something I would make once in my kitchen as a larder meal.
Susan had a pate' of black beans, undercooked and somewhat floury in texture; paired with crab mousse. A crummy pairing, to be sure, but the crab was excellent.
She had cochon lait (suckling pig, though boned and rolled and tied), splendidly soft and delicious, with sauteed cabbage and the ubiquitous spices.
For dessert she had a chocolate truffle with very light chocolate ice cream, spiced again, which she said was lovely.
The wine list is long and good, though not expensive. We had a Sancerre, not the normal pic-poul (lip-stinger) but a soft and fruity version with just enough bite for our food. The brothers are from that region and know their Sancerre!
Clos Morrions used to serve a little dish of chocolate mousse after the meal, as a little present while you were waiting for your bill. This custom was happily continued, but Alas! the chocolate was heavily spiced with . . . Cumin and Anise? Inedible.
The service? There is none. They practically threw our plates at us, plunked the wine without a cooler on our table without even giving me a sip to approve, slid Susan's dessert across my side of the table to (approximately) where she sat . . . Paper napkins, no placemats, no class of any sort.
Good and cheap though, for Paris. Entrees 8 (euros), plats 12, dessert 5.50: 2 courses 18.50, three courses 25.
Our wine was a bit steep at 39 euros, but was wonderful.
If you want to eat, a great funny cheap place. If you want to dine, go elsewhere.
Pre' Verre, 8, rue Thenard, Paris 75005. Closed Sunday and Monday