Achi Restaurant

Achi Parmentier

July 14, 2021By Heidi EllisonRestaurants
The chef peeks out of the kitchen at the restaurant Achi on Parmentier.
The chef peeks out of the kitchen at the restaurant Achi on Parmentier.

The slowly gentrifying Avenue Parmentier in Paris’s 11th arrondissement has a new restaurant, Achi, that will certainly speed up the process, in the best sense. 

The kitchen is manned by yet another convert from the business world – computer scientist-turned-chef Sacha Ouss – and womaned by his assistant, Charlotte Drouhin, who used to work at the now-closed restaurant Tannat, also located on Avenue Parmentier.

I liked Achi right off the bat because of the friendly servers and the spacious interior, with a high ceiling and a big skylight creating a pleasant airy feel. Music was playing, but at just the right volume, loud enough to be heard but not loud enough to annoy.

We studied the menu for some time before making our choices and pretty much sharing everything. The four starters sounded more interesting than the three main courses, but there were four of us, and we ended up tasting almost all of them, except for the vegetarian main course of aioli, soft-boiled egg and seasonal vegetables, which didn’t sound very exciting or worth €22, although, judging by what we did have, it was probably very good as well.

Burrata with puffed quinoa.
Burrata with puffed quinoa.
Radishes with herb butter.
Radishes with herb butter.

We even ended up tasting two of the three snack dishes listed at the bottom of the menu, both of which we loved: burrata with crispy, garlicky puffed quinoa and chives, super-fresh radishes with herb butter.

Accras with tzatziki.
Accras with tzatziki.

The accras made with merlu (hake) and served with tzatziki were a tasty, sophisticated version of the Caribbean fish fritters, softer and less chewy.

Summer squash with ricotta, fig leaf, fermented cherries and samphire.
Summer squash with ricotta, fig leaf, fermented cherries and samphire.

A refreshing, colorful and creative salad consisted of summer squash with ricotta, fig leaf, fermented cherries and samphire.

Tartare of beef and razor clams.
Tartare of beef and razor clams.

The beef tartare was combined with the flesh of raw razor clams, a surprising combination that I found quite delicious, even though the flavors blended rather than standing out distinctly from each other.

Hake with peas and snowpeas.
Hake with peas and snow peas.

The fish course, hake wrapped up in seaweed and served with wonderful fresh peas and snow peas and a citrusy sauce was delightful.

Chuck steak with mushrooms.
Chuck steak with mushrooms.

Another hit was the juicy paleron de bœuf (chuck steak) served with a mix of raw and wonderfully crispy fried mushrooms, a thick gravy and what seemed to be home-made grain mustard, the only thing none of us appreciated: it was too vinegary and not mustardy enough.

Strawberries and rhubarb with elderflower-flavored crushed ice.
Strawberries and rhubarb with elderflower-flavored crushed ice.
Almond tart with red berries and cream.
Almond tart with red berries and cream.

The two desserts we shared were also winners, especially the original dish of strawberries and rhubarb with elderflower-flavored crushed ice. The more traditional almond tart with red berries and cream was also a pleasure.

The day after eating there, I was telling a friend how much I liked Achi and idly wondered where its odd name had come from. Clever Cathy said, “I know! Hachis Parmentier.” Duh! Of course! The French version of shepherd’s pie wasn’t on the menu, but Achi was on the right street. I won’t be forgetting its name soon.

Favorite

What do you think? Send a comment:

Your comment is subject to editing. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe for free!

The Paris Update newsletter will arrive in your inbox every Wednesday, full of the latest Paris news, reviews and insider tips.