Our friends, Cali and Alex are in Paris this week. We told them to go to Spring and even if they don’t make it, I know they will have fabulous meals while they are there. Since they are there, it’s got me thinking about Paris all over again. I never really finished blogging about Paris so I will continue with a restaurant review of Spring, located at 6 Rue Bailleul, Paris, 75001.
It’s important to point out the address because we almost didn’t make our reservation. We were in fact, nearly two hours late to our reservation at this very acclaimed restaurant. We went first to their old location and discovered it was no longer there. We asked anyone we could find where Spring was, but didn’t have much luck with our limited French. Matt tried to ask in Spanish to an old man who kept asking what the name of the restaurant was in Spanish (primavera? saltar? What “spring” should I translate, and why does it matter? The sign should say SPRING). Eventually an employee at a nearby bar pointed out a restaurant down the street that he said used to be called Spring. The chef at the old location (which is now a tiny bistro of another name) gave us the new address and even tried to try to get a hold of Spring to ask them to hold our reservation. He called on his cell phone during his own dinner service. What a nice guy! What stupid tourists! He had no luck so we went out on the street and tried to find a cab.
We had very little luck hailing a taxi, too. There weren’t many on the street and the ones we saw were immediately snatched away because they were either too far ahead of us or too far back and we couldn’t run fast enough to catch one. I was beyond panicking and had pretty much given up hope. I knew Parisians were serious about reservations, that our reservation was NOW and we were a mile away. Matt, being eternally optimistic (but only when I’m being pessimistic) kept trying to find a cab and was finally successful. We got to the restaurant and pleaded our case to the hostess. She went wide-eyed when she understood that we had gone to the other location and was basically apologetic to us as she took us to our table. I honestly couldn’t believe they let us in. Guess that’s what you get when the chef is a native of Chicago and has trained his staff in the good ol’ American way of customer service (a skill severely lacking in anything Parisian)
Without further ado, our meal:
Started with an amuse of salmon on top of smoked eggplant
Matt finishing up the salmon
The lovely bread accompanying our meal.
The kitchen torching the salmon to get a nice crust.
First course: Red mullet (fish) on top of razor clams and a chicken broth surrounding everything.
Second Course: Veal sweetbreads, calf’s head and a sauce made out of red crabs. Garnished with shaved radishes.
Third Course: Roasted Quail sitting on top of a mushroom/almond puree and garnished with shaved fois gras and pomegranate seeds. Matt swears there were roasted grapes inside the quail.
We both REALLY loved this course!
That was our sweet waitress. I believe she is named Alisa and had been with the chef since the beginning of his career in Paris.
She showed us an array of amazing cheeses. We chose 4 although I can’t remember what they were. Consumed? Yes, entirely.
Dessert #1 – Blackberries with a sweet cream and sesame wafer
Thyme sorbet topped with a charred anise merinque
A chocolate cake drizzled in caramel sauce
The dashing waiter who told us about a great market that we went to the next day
Spring at midnight. It’s literally in an alley.
The kitchen cleaning up after service. We shut the place down 🙂
Chef Daniel Rose. We went back to see if they had a copy of the menu. They didn’t, so he wrote out the menu on the back of a postcard. Too awesome.
Front of postcard:
Back of postcard with his writing of the night’s menu: