Our faith having been restored in the food to be found in Paris, ironically by a chippy owned by an English bloke, we were eagerly anticipating dinner that evening. Well, if I’m honest I wasn’t, purely down to the fact that I wasn’t remotely hungry from ginormous fish and chips at lunch and a huge dinner the night before. I know, I know, it’s unlike me to not be looking forward to a meal… You’ll be delighted to hear I perked up once I saw the menu at Bistrot Paul Bert.
We had successfully booked dinner on the night before we actually turned up, but they very kindly fitted us in. A blackboard menu was propped up on the table and a ginormous wine list was placed in front of us.
To start with I went with the buffalo mozzarella and heritage tomato salad, I’d seen it being taken to other tables and despite the fact that it is presented in a cheapo Pyrex dish with a paper doily under it, it was utterly gorgeous. The mozzarella was proper mozzarella, none of your rubbery-cut-with-a-bread-knife lark, it was gooey and falling apart with bits sticking to the wonderful tomatoes, such a colourful and fresh dish. I was in absolute heaven. Dad had the terrine, of course, and loved it while Mum and Will went for a beetroot dish with a soft boiled egg and lambs lettuce which has got my mum cooking beetroot again now she’s home, so must have been good!
I didn’t have a steak the entire time I was in France that weekend (nor the next weekend) which was slightly disappointing, and I really wanted one after my mozzarella, but having seen the size of the, knowing how greedy I am and my incapability of leaving food on my plate, I thought it best for all concerned that I went for something else… I absolutely love beans, not green beans specifically, although they are good, but I’m talking flageolet / cannellini / butter beans, the Europeans do them so so much better than we do here in the UK. So I went for the pork chop, something I never order in the UK because of one or two occasions when it’s arrived and I could have knocked someone out with it it was so dry. My fat arrived with a side of pork. Fortunately, even though the fatty bit was huge, there was lots of meat on the plate as well. And the beans were delicious if a little under seasoned (the fork in the picture is my Dad trying to pinch some beans). Mum and Will’s steaks looked and apparently were delicious – although, as I thought, enormous. And Dad’s rack of lamb was beautiful and pink.
Having spotted a cheeseboard floating around, we wondered if you had to know the owner or be a party of a certain size to have the cheeseboard plonked on your table for you to essentially eat as much as you want. No no, it arrived with more bread and we went to work on the 6 cheese available to us. All were fantastic and, needless to say, we didn’t make much of a dent in it, given how much we’d eaten already.
A slightly cheaper night than the evening before, but the atmosphere and service and food and wine, oh, the wine, Will and I chose some really special stuff were worth every penny. I will be back there next time I’m in Paris.