Restaurants & Bars

Paris report - La Poule au Pot

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Restaurants & Bars

Paris report - La Poule au Pot

Bill Strzempek | Nov 21, 2005 02:23 PM

LA POULE AU POT
9, rue Vauvilliers, 1er
01 42 36 32 96
Metro Louvre-Rivoli or Chatelet-les-Halles

Another old reliable, especially for post-theatre/opera/clubbing as they are open to the rosy hour of 5AM. The dining room has a lot of 1920s character from its walls of glazed white and gilded tiles. After pastis and champagne we had the Salade Poule au Pot, which was enormous and filling, a true meal in itself. Hot sauteed chicken livers and their butter and juices are placed over spinach and tossed with a tart vinaigrette, causing the spinach to wilt and cling to the livers. Absolutely delicious and the presence of all that spinach does allow one to qualify it as a “heart-healthy” dish, doesn’t it? The other starter we tried was a “tarte aux St. Jacques,” which was a puff pastry crust on which was layered fresh tomatoes, grilled onion and two thick scallops with their lovely roe still attached. Tasty and a nice combo, but unfortunately the failure to remove the seeds from the tomatoes made the base of the pastry soggy even before the first forkful. Two butchershop standards followed, a cuisse de canard (that paled next to the one at Philosophes a day or two earlier) and a bloody-rare-like-I-like-it coeur de boeuf, with a “sauce boucher” of drippings and wine, served with beef bones filled with marrow and some (rather British seeming) sauteed veg. They have a very nice country bread here that soaks up juices nicely, and I also appreciate the care taken in airing their wines in wide-bottomed decanters to let them open up a bit before serving. We were so full by meal’s end we only shared a soothing glace vanille for dessert.

And a cultural note: you know you’re a real New Yorker when at meal’s end you go to collect your coat (which the owner had you hang up by the open front door) and after pawing through all the garments on the rack you are surprised that your coat is in fact still there.

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