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Monday, May 25, 2015

Dix-Huit - No Name Goes Bourgeouis

One last dinner in Paris before the Moose goes globe-trotting for the summer and he picked a good one, Dix-Huit, the restaurant whose 'name' is the street number so you won't get lost in the upscale Ternes area in the 17th.  Don't let the neighborhood fool you, Dix-Huit/18 is affordable, despite not having a fixed-price 'menu,' something that I don't think I'll ever understand.

Chef Aaron Isap on the right
Inside Dix-Huit, obviously

       The two-roomed restaurant is the domain of Julien Peret and his the Flipino chef Aaron Isap, the latter having worked his way through Apicius, Drouant, Ze Kitchen Galerie and Pan, which is pretty amazing given that he looks like he's maybe 21 (or should I say 18?).  I didn't detect much of an Asian influence in the dishes, as I had been led to expect, but Isap is adventurous enough to keep things interesting - according to him, during his visit to our table when he made the rounds late in the meal - the menu changes daily. 

The restaurant's decor and arrangement are a bit odd - perhaps a matter of taste - we were ushered into the brightly lit back room, with its resemblance to a terrace: an atrium-like roof and an ambiance that suggested lab room with plants.  By mid-evening, the lights dimmed, the tables filled, and things became a bit more copacetic, notwithstanding the New York couple at the table next to ours who kept apologizing for listening in to the fascinating and provocative conversation typical of Moose and my interactions, but then went on to add their two sense nonetheless.  C'est la vie, as they say here.

Given that the carte changes daily, the following won't be of much use to you, but below you'll see what the offerings looked like the mid-week evening of our dinner:

Click on photo to enlarge

And here is the translation, in pictures:

This white asparagus dish, perhaps the tastiest of the evening, was comped to us by chef Isap - what can I say, the Moose is connected

My Crudo de Doraude entree was more pleasing to the eye than to the tongue - good, but nothing spectacular (9€)

The Moose was more than satisfied with this tartare de veau entree (11€)

My main dish - pintade with radishes - coulda been a contendah, but the betterave (?) accompaniment didn't really work for me.  The meat was excellent, though.  (23€)

Opting out of dessert, ever mindful that such extravagances could multiply any ill effects of his copious lager drinking on non-dinner out evenings, the Moose savored his lieu jaune (19€) and watched me dig into my espuma cafe  (9€).

This rather mundane looking dessert grew more interesting and tastier the deeper I dug, as I hit the pistachios.  Wouldn't mind another of these babies

The verdict is more a pretty good than a spectacular.  However, given the ever-changing menu and chef Isap's experimental nature, Dix-Huit certainly warrants a return visit, probably with the ever-discerning Co. in tow.  I'll keep you posted (which is why they call these things 'posts').

18 (you guessed it) rue Bayen
75017 Paris

From the restaurant's website

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