Ever since I’m not working close to Shane anymore and we don’t get to spend breaks together we hardly see each other. We also have different weekend days and he won’t agree to come to dance swing with me. Soon he’ll be finishing his stage and leaving France, so as a (hopefully not) last dinner in a restaurant together, he called and suggested Monday dinner together. “Where do you want to go?” he asked while I was at work and had no idea. We just found out this Monday is the Easter Monday when many places close for vacation, and the “Best hamburger place in Paris” according to Shane was closed. So I challenged him: “1. Nothing with fries because I just had too many. 2. Not Italian. 3. Early so we can go out after. 4. Somewhere in the center so that I won’t have to run around the city too much.” I admit, together with the easter thing and being a Monday night it was quite a challenge. Later I got a message: “I made a reservation at this new bistro near Ecole Militaire for 7:30, Pottoka.”

Bravo Shane, that place fit all the restrictions and was a great choice! He was excited about the place being a Basque cuisine, and in the Basque language Pottoka is the name of an endangered pony. Interesting?

After a month not seeing each other we were chatty like old ladies. Between one story and another we were trying to read the menu in French even though we were offered a menu in English and refused. We shared an entrée and dessert and had two different main dishes.

The Menu. There was a board with specials in additional price.

The ambiance was nice, it was a cold evening and they turn on the heating when we came in. By 21:00 the place was full. The waiters were nice and welcoming.

The Amuse bouche was a fresh cheese dip with croutons. The cheese was tasty but I didn't like the croutons that tasted old.

On the table: Piment d'espelette!

Entrée: Nem de boeuf fondant, condiment raifort et petit bocal de légumes au vinaigre (Fried roll of beef, horseradish condiment and vegetables in vinegar)

I adore these little vegetable pickles. I have sentiments to flower carrots and there was one unrecognizable vegetable there, that I also liked.

Horseradish dip - I'm used to stronger... too bad it had just a subtle horseradish tang to it but a nice entrée overall


Croustillant de gambas à la menthe, lait de concombre et romaine au parmesan (mint crispy shrimp with cucumber-lettuce-parmesan milk)

Shane intrigued by mint and shrimp put together. The dip was a novelty but we were under impressed with the cessar salad that was a bit sad.


Côte d'agneau grillées à la plancha, épaule croustillante, fondu de tomate gratinée au chèvre ( grilled lamb chops, lamb shoulder and tomatoes with goat cheese gratin)

The lamb rib was interestingly matched with goat cheese and olives paste and some other flavors that all worked together. The tomatoes with shredded shoulder were delicious. Perfectly Spanish-influenced dish


For dessert: Russe au citron, sorbet pamplemousse (Lemon "Russe", grapefruit sorbet)

Pouring the coffee crème anglaise (was it coffee?) on top

Another great surprise, I wasn't expecting a lot of the Russian Shane chose but it was delicious. Unfortunately this caterpillar plate did not allow scooping all the sauce off the plate.

Nice little place, I like it being small and inviting, not pretentious and cute. The lunch menu price is tempting (22 euro) but even without it we ended up paying 22 euro each for sharing two of the plates. Not too bad!

Afterwards I was happily just a few metro stops away from my favorite Monday night’s pub. Shane ended up going home with a poor excuse. We made plans to go for the very last dinner together a night before his flight back. Hopefully I will be able to make it :>

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2 Responses to Pottoka, Basque Fusion

  1. Ema Irit says:

    המגדל מצלעות הכבש וגבינת עיזים הכי הרשים אותי כמובן……..

  2. Nachman says:

    “Unfortunately this caterpillar plate did not allow scooping all the sauce off the plate.” – sometimes the only solution is to pick up the plate a lick it clean – not that i would ever do that… 😉

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