Vacation rentals in France (farms, cottages, gites, apartments)
05 ARR: Le Tourbillon45 rue Claude Bernard , Phone: 01 47 07 86 32
Closing day: Saturday (lunch) and Sunday
Reviewed by: Tessmar from CA, review #3634
Modern, intimate, elegant, and gaining lots of attention from food critics
Directions: About a 20 minute walk from Jardin du Luxembourg. Closest metro stop is Censier Daubenton
Rebecca and Cedric Tessier have created a small but well appointed place that is attracting attention from many respected food critics including contributors to Chowhound.com. They are part of a small but growing movement among young, talented chefs to not rebel against traditional Parisienne cuisine yet still update it with fresh new, and to a degree lighter, tastes.
My wife and I walked to the restaurant from the Luxembourg Gardens with Fellow Slow Traveler SharonJ and her sister, and it was a longer hike than the map somehow led me to believe, but not ridiculously so. There are a couple of metro stops that old reduce this somewhat depending on connections but we did not look into that approach. The walk was not unpleasant, if a bit tiring.
The decor is modern and fresh with lots of white accents. Rebecca acts as hostess and is friendly and handles English speaking customers easily. We were the only customers for our noon reservation, which worried me a bit until the place quickly filled to capacity with well dressed parties of four or more, leaving us as the only non-French patrons...a promising sign, I thought, for authenticity of experience.
In addition to the menu of the day there is a regular menu offering a number of choices and combinations ranging from a single plate for 18 euros to a combination of either an entree and plate or plate and dessert for 25 euros or all three for 29 euros. We took the middle approach.
My wife had a delicious tuna salad appetizer while I chose green crab Soup, a French/Caribbean dish that was also very tasty, served with what looked and tasted like a small taco shell filled with a creamy cheese. For the main course I had pork roast with mashed potatoes that were buttery without being overpowered by the stuff, while Sherri chose steak with pan fried potatoes served with tomatoes in olive oil. All four of us shared a bottle of the house red wine, which was smooth and quite acceptable and priced at under 20 euros, and I had a creme brulee variant that was exceptional.
While the restaurant is outside the most heavily frequented tourist areas this can be viewed as a plus, as it means it is closer to and more representative of places that Parisians frequent. Le Tourbillon is very highly thought of by critics, is new enough to actually have a chance to get into without making reservations a year in advance, and small and friendly enough to make the experience a very pleasant one.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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