Just around the corner from Eels, one of my favorite restaurants in Paris, is Brigade du Tigre, another place opened by Eels chef Adrien Ferrand and another chef, Galien Emery (both trained by superchef William Ledeuil), this time in the trendy sharable-Asian-small-plates mode, along the lines of Double Dragon.
Like Eels, Brigade du Tigre has a clean, stripped-down look, with distressed walls. A mezzanine provides extra seating.
The young servers were touchingly sweet, without exception, helping to make this an almost perfect girls’ night out with my friends Carmela and June. It was marred only by the common problem in Paris restaurants of too much noise, with music playing and happy customers laughing and talking loudly.
Interestingly, the male server recommended that we order three plates each, while one of the women advised a total of three of the larger plates and perhaps four of the smaller ones. Having fallen into the three-each trap in other places like this and being unable to finish them, we ordered only six altogether, including one serving of rice, and even that was too much.
As you can see from the pictures, just about everything was topped with a generous shower of coriander.
We started with an appetizer of crevettes grises (sand shrimps) fried in satay sauce. Tasty, but not representative of the delights to come.
Who could resist ordering “crispy caramelized chicken with cashews”? Not us, and we loved it, So satisfyingly crunchy and enhanced by a delicious soy-based sauce.
We were also crazy about the succulent, richly flavored porchetta, stuffed pork roast that is more Italian than Asian, but here it was given an Asian treatment, with a soy-based sauce, sesame seeds and crushed nuts.
The outstanding fried Chinese dumplings stuffed with pork came with a brilliant dipping sauce of mayonnaise with sweet and savory Bull-dog tonkatsu sauce.
The only vegetable we ordered was grilled sucrine (a small head of lettuce), which the chef magically transformed with the sauce and the addition of nuts and sunflower, courgette and sesame seeds, turning it into a satisfying and flavorful dish that deserved to be listed as a main course rather than a side dish.
By the time we got to dessert, the restaurant was out of cheesecake and rice pudding, so we ordered what was left. The prune cake, while well-made, didn’t excite us, but the ice cream was fabulous. We tested the hibiscus/rhubarb, mango/coriander and guava/lemongrass flavors. The zingy guava/lemongrass really stood out, but the other two, with their more subtle flavors, were also excellent.
In June, Time Out named Brigade du Tigre one of the “21 best new restaurants in the world right now,” and while that sounds like an exaggeration, I would definitely agree that it’s one of the best new restaurants in Paris. Chef Emery definitely has this tiger by the tail.Favorite