Monday, October 25, 2010

Josephine Chez Dumonet : Paris, France

This place was recommended for their Duck Confit.

Upon walking in, my first impression was that this place seemed to draw customers much more nicely dressed than us: business men in suits, older ladies out for a nice lunch. And in we walk with jeans. Oops. (As an aside, this apparently is something I am more self-conscious about than my fiance. Not quite sure why.) But nonetheless, our waiter seemed relatively empathetic to the situation (and also to our lack of French abilities) and showed us to a table and took our without a second glance.

Amuse Bouche - Cold gazpacho - Fresh tasting, nice way to kick off the meal.

Salad & Pate - Pate tasting more on the meat side, rather than the rich fatty decadence than we have gotten used to, but decent nonetheless.

Just a photo of the mini pickles that they served.  Not that vinegary, but very crisp and crunchy.

Duck confit - There was a bit of miscommunication, as it was not clear whether the duck confit served two or whether we ordered two orders, but we ended up each getting a plate of the duck confit.   Interesting stuff.   Since there was actually not that much fat on the duck, it was not oily or greasy, yet it remained suitably moist throughout.  The meat itself had a nice smoky, deep and fairly rich flavor, the skin adding a nice crunch.  Strangely, what was more memorable to us were the essentially well-executed potato chips, potato slices that had been deep-fried or fried in duck fat.  If the duck itself was played relatively straight, the potatoes were decadence themselves.

But man, is this supposed to be portioned for one? We were absolutely stuffed and I had to push to finish all of the duck piece.  Isn't this France, where things are generally well-proportioned?

Paris Toulouse - This particular dessert was made fresh and took 25 minutes to make, so had to be ordered ahead of time.  Hence I had ordered it before our dishes had come out and before we realized the massive portion of the entree.

So after finishing the duck, we were almost dreading the dessert, not looking forward to only being able to have 2 bites of and essentially wasting the dessert.

And when we got the thing, our jaws dropped.   The thing was humongous.  And it was a single order. I'm not sure the photo really shows the scale of the thing. Think of half of a 10 inch angel cake.  Oh and this was my portion (half of the cake); my fiance got the other half.    (The photo also does not show the powdered sugar that was supposed to be sprinkled over; the waiter came a half second later, apologizing profusely, saying that the chef got angry at him for carrying it out before it was ready.)

But man, I would order it again.

Simple flavors, but just very well done. Very, very light fried batter (cutable with a butter knife) sandwiching whipped cream, custard and raspberries. Complemented by spoonful of lingonberry (?) / Gooseberry (?) sorbet that cut through the creaminess (and also had perhaps a bit of pepper, seasoning?)

Since the thing was so light, we ended up finishing it and looking back, the dessert was my favorite part of the meal.

We ended up waddling out of Chez Dumonet, very very full.  But the meal was a nice one and it certainly ended on a very simple, but very nice note.

Josephine Chez Dumonet
117 Rue du Cherche-Midi 75006 Paris, France (map)
01 45 48 52 40

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