Amadaé

Where Are the Pop and Sparkle?

October 11, 2017By Heidi EllisonRestaurants

I’m slightly at a loss when it comes to reviewing Amadaé, a pretty little restaurant in the Sentier, Paris’s rag-trade district. It has all the ingredients for success, with a young Japanese chef, Kayori Hirano, who has done time as sous-chef at the Hôtel Peninsula and makes excellent dishes with carefully selected ingredients cooked well and served by a winning young staff. 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with it. And yet… There was nothing that really made us sit up and take notice. 

The fish pâté served with good brown whole-grain bread was just okay. I followed that up with fried ceps and button mushrooms, served with curls of crunchy red endives, which provided a nice contrast to the tender, perfectly cooked mushrooms.

My friend Helen started with the octopus, which was cooked just right and served on a soupy, oniony tomato base which she found too salty, but that I thought was fine.

My main-course veal was also lovely and tender, but light on flavor. It came with a slice of sweet potato, more chopped-up red endive and tiny roasted grenaille potatoes, both cooked to a turn.

Helen had big chunks of tender beef with girolle mushrooms and the same baby potatoes.

She was annoyed that several dishes came with the same garnishes and by the leaves of arugula scattered over the top as decoration, quite a cliché by now.

The two desserts we tried were a chocolate/pear tart and a dish of plums and peaches (not quite ripe enough and not exactly seasonal) with a tasty Mascarpone cream. Again, they were fine but didn’t send us into swoons of delight the way, for example, the chocolate dessert at Kitchen Terre did recently.

As you can see, I have no serious complaints about Amadaé, but, for the price, I would expect a little more pop and sparkle. 

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