Our experience in Pierre Sang can only be described as amazing – from beginning to end. I’m not only talking about the food, this time it was just something else that I never had before and since. Lets’ start from the beginning: I heard about Pierre Sang not from TV, even though this young Korean-French Chef apparently participated in the French “Master Chef” show. I noticed a while ago a friend’s pictures in Facebook from the opening of this restaurant. It looked interesting so I marked it as “Check-Out-Next-Time-In-Paris”. I’m glad I remembered to do so.
There’s no reservations here, so arriving at 20:30 when the place opens up for dinner an hour earlier is considered as being late. When we stepped in this tiny restaurant “The-Process” begun. You will soon understand what I mean. The place was packed! Being a very small space, it was crowded and hard to find a place to wait for our seats. They said 10 minutes. Three couples waited before us and about three more came after and we were all standing there, moving around the non-existing entrance area so that the waitress can go back and forth. This is the magic, isn’t it? 50 minutes later we were finally and happily seated at the bar – facing the plating area of the open kitchen. Did we feel the luckiest ever? Of course.
Feeling cozy we waited for the menu and in the meantime we received the bread basket with butter scrapped from a HUGE tub of butter sitting in the middle of the bar. It was the most memorable bread dish I ever had. Nothing fancy actually: a sourdough in thick slices lightly toasted over the stove. They don’t even do their own bread – but they sure know where to buy the perfect one. I would be happy just sitting there with the bread and butter and some wine. But it was just the beginning. “Do you have anything that you don’t eat?” was the question we got from the super-busy bartender. We eat everything! We responded proudly even though it seemed like the only answer to say in this situation. Still waiting for the menu we suddenly got our first dish. Let me remind you – we didn’t order anything yet. We presumed it was a mistake and asked if it’s definitely for us, and if so – what is it? The dish was indeed intended for us with no title or explanation. When we’re facing such a beautiful dish we stop questioning and start eating. It was a dish of Green and white asparagus slightly blanched and some of it raw with fresh peas, olive oil and asparagus Ice Cream. Wow. I loved that dish! I loved how we didn’t get any explanation. I loved the combination and especially the ice-cream. The long wait and the stuck up attitude definitely seem to be worth it at that point. “What would you prefer: red or white wine?” was the second and last question. We started with a white, but again, no wine list to choose from. We received a blind taste of something. I liked it and only after pouring the glasses the bartender revealed the bottle. The meal just flowed from that point. We had no control or understanding to what’s going on. While observing Pierre Sang and his crew of two cooks plating, we wondered if anything’s plated for our next course.
Next we had the Herring confit, lemon creme, Juliette potato salad, pickled red onion and Vitelotte (purple potato) chips. It was a twist on a classic combination, but something a bit unusual for us and I liked it. The meal proceeded with a Yellowfin Tuna on Béarnaise sauce served with tempura Andouillette sausage and Espelette peppers. Keep in mind that we had no idea what this dish was when it was served and it’s a good idea sometimes – because I thought I didn’t like Andouillette – a classic French sausage filled with tripe and other stuff and then fried. This version was nice and I didn’t even notice the tripe. The sauce was a bit out of proportion for this small dish. We then received a dish of Braised pork cheek, cooked beans and black radish with red wine and miso sauce. I’m not a fan of cooked beans and this dish did not convince me this time but the cheeks were very nicely cooked.
We then already sipped our Languedoc Chipie Domain De Clairac 2008 red glass of wine and were very happy. If you wonder how am I writing this review as if I knew what was served to us, then… well, I didn’t. We noticed there’s a note pinned in the open kitchen with today’s menu handwritten. Tried to take the best shot of it with the zoom of the camera and at home did some work of decrypting and translating. Try it for yourself – it wasn’t easy!
For the cheese course we had a piece of hard semi-mature cheese, maybe Comté and it came with a Condiment of port wine, campari and cereals. Okay that was just weird. I didn’t like the condiment and could not understand that match. For dessert we had a Soft genoise cake with strawberries compot and avocado cream. We only found out this was avocado after we finished the meal and Chef Sang asked if we liked it. We thanked him and I took the chance to ask about what was that green cream in the dessert.
The bill was the last surprise of the evening. It was very reasonable: 35 euro for each of our 6 course tasting menu and 6 / 7 euro for a glass of wine. This is a bargain! We did notice that everyone who sat after we did was received a 4 course meal with larger plates so that they can finish dinner around the time we will. I’m happy we came on time for the 6 course.
We left Pierre Sang very content and with an awesome story to tell.