Taking a Break with the Bourgeoisie

July 5, 2017By Heidi EllisonRestaurants

On the trail of chef Yannick Lahopgnou, who used to work at Zébulon, recently reviewed here, I went to Odette the following week, which immediately recommended itself because it is open on Sunday.

When we arrived, we discovered two more commendable aspects: it was air-conditioned on a hot summer evening and has a handsome designer decor made up of wavy cutout dark wood shapes complemented by copper light fixtures, black-marble-topped tables and comfortable padded seating. This is no bobo (bourgeois-bohemian) neo-bistro sans décor; it’s just plain bourgeois and as such makes a nice change.

Another pleasant feature, unsurprisingly, was the food, served in the form of small plates. The sous-chef was in charge of the kitchen on the chef’s night off, but we thoroughly enjoyed everything he produced, beginning with a delicious salad of broad beans and fresh peas with a verbena-flavored dressing. 

I followed that with a delightfully satisfying pork tenderloin served with crispy potato pancakes and delicate fried onion rings. I was also tempted by the old-fashioned vol-au-vent, but I’ll have to go back another day to try it.

My friend, who had had a big lunch and was dining lightly, had only the lotte (monkfish) with celeriac and oyster sauce. She loved it. 

We shared an unusual and highly successful dessert: carmelized pineapple, edged with crispy wafers and served with coriander ice cream. 

The service was professional and solicitous at Odette, which is attached to the Hotel Albar, owned by Caroline & Sophie Rostang, daughters of famed chef Michel Rostang. It’s a good place to think of when you want to dine in the center of Paris but aren’t sure where to go. And the prices are surprisingly reasonable. Other options are Champeaux, owned by another famous chef, Alain Ducasse, and Spring and Chez la Vieille, owned by a brilliant chef who hasn’t gotten the recognition (read Michelin stars) he deserves, Daniel Rose.


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