My friend Andy G and I recently went to Comme Chez Maman, in a fairly remote area of Paris' 17th arrondissement. This bistro -- a coup de coeur (heart throb) in the Pudlo guide -- is run by a chef who has worked for Alain Ducasse and Jean-Georges (New York and Tokyo) but decided to create a simple bistro with, as the name implies, traditional French food. Andy G had calf's liver and I had roast chicken; both were just what they should be, as were the starters and desserts (an amazing gauffre (waffle) with chocolate sauce and an excellent millefeuille with red fruits). Comme Chez Maman 5, rue des Moines, 75017 Paris (Métro Brochant).
Parmesan and onion tart at Métropolitain
Then last night I went with a friend to Métropolitain, a charming bistro in the 4th arrondissement, in the southern part of the Marais, not far from Île St-Louis. This place gets three red cocottes from Le Petit Lebey, the guide to Paris Bistros, and rapport qualité-prix de l'année (best value for money of the year) from the Pudlo guide. While I don't agree with the rapport qualité-prix award (prices are reasonable but not that low), we had a very enjoyable meal here, classic dishes elevated to something a little special, served with grace in a charming little place. My companion was happy with her sweetbreads and I greatly enjoyed my parmesan and onion tart (see photo), duck two ways and banana dessert. Métropolitain, 8, rue de Jouy, 75004 Paris (Métro Saint-Paul).