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Friday, March 25, 2016

Prosper et Fortunée- One Man Show

Prosper et Fortunée's Eric Lévy does it all - takes reservations by phone - and offers a detailed explanation about the restaurant's concept in the process - shops the local markets in the morning, seats customers, cooks the food, serves it, prepares the bill, and takes the payment.  Okay, I lied, he does have an assistant who, like clockwork, shows up just around the time that the 12 customers are finishing up their dessert to unobtrusively begin to clean up the kitchen.   I hesitated writing about my visit with Co. in tow for a late February dinner, because P&F is tough to review.  It's like going to your aunt's house for dinner and watching her slave away in the kitchen preparing dishes in heartfelt earnest to please her loved ones in the next room.  Even if the meal was mediocre, you don't want to hurt her feelings and so you tell her the meat loaf and mashed potatoes were the best you've ever tasted in your life.

The inimitable Monsieur Levy, a one-man band
Or not.  Unlike the nervous, obsequious aunt, Monsieur Levy carries out his evening's work with an air of inspired, workmanlike confidence.  And despite the unavoidable intimacy of P&F, it's not like you are yukking it up with fellow diners in the small one-room-kitchen restaurant-atelier, although I'm sure that happens depending on the dynamic of the evening. I had no compelling interest in talking with anyone but lovely Co. during our visit, albeit discussion with Monsieur Lévy proved the exception.

It took a while after our 8:30 pm arrival before the remaining diners showed up and M. Lévy began slicing and dicing the ingredients so that the several course affair could get rolling.  The preparation and servings were methodical, with each course being served to each diner in turn, seated at a handful of high tables.  If you are in a hurry and in need of a quick dinner, P&F is not the place to be - it was after midnight by the time we paid up and donned our coats.

If it seems like I'm stalling to avoid talking about the food, you are an astute reader.  Bear in mind, I'm stalling about the dishes because in procrastinating, I've forgotten their descriptions.  The ingredients were fresh and tantalizing, okay, satisfied?  Hey, its been a tough month with the world coming apart at the seams, and maybe you can forgive my memory lapses - I can't find my P&F receipt or visitation card, and all I have to rely on are a bunch of blurry photos, including those below (in order of their serving).  By the way, I have finally - FINALLY - purchased a decent camera, and once I figure out how to use it, which hopefully will require less time than it is taking for me to master the French language, you should start seeing some really beautiful, amazing, fantastic food photos at this site.  (Disclaimer - the first three photos above are not mine).

An excellent fish soup to start off the evening

Risotto with a scallop on top

This, I believe, is cabillaud

Co. says thumbs up for the lamb

And for me, the non-eater of lamb, some of the tastiest scallops I've ever eaten

Dessert 1 - not really the apple of my eye, but Co. wasn't complaining

Dessert 2 - much better, and much more interesting than it looks (I vaguely remember mention of almonds and yogurt

When it comes to wine at P&F you take what you're offered from a couple of choices - this Graves did not disappoint, at all

Eschewing end of meal espressos, our bill came to a reasonable €124 for the six-course meal and bottle, certainly reasonable for an unforgettable experience.  I have no great urge to do it again, but a dinner at Prosper et Fortunée is one of those 'you've got to try it once' sorts of deals.

Prosper et Fortunée
50, rue Broca
Paris 5
 Tel: : +33 1 43 37 70 39
Metro: Les Gobelins, Censier - Daubenton
The restaurant sits unobrusively on a quiet Parisian street - one day you will have nostalgia for these blurry images (soon, I hope)

1 comment:

Linda said...

It looks like a great place!

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