For the last couple of years, starred Michelin chefs like Guy Savoy and Joel Robuchon have been trying to conquer a new market in the food industry, offering high quality food at a reasonable price. It's for a clientele seeking a fine dining experience but cannot afford to pay for the whole ordeal.
Joel Robuchon succeeded perfectly in doing so with the opening of his famous Atelier in Paris and Guy Savoy with the opening of Atelier Maitre Albert and now Le Terroir Parisien by Chef Yannick Alleno.
Chef Alleno is one of the culinary figures I respect the most. Let's read more about him.
Yannick Alléno (born December 16, 1968) is a French chef. He has been awarded three Michelin stars since 2007. Alleno was born in Puteaux into a family of chefs and was passionate about cooking from a young age, helping his mother in the kitchen. In 1984 he trained in hotel management at the Lycée Santos-Dumont de Saint-Cloud where he finished first in his class and then became an apprentice in pastry in 1986 at the Hotel Lutetia. He continued his training at the Royal Monceau,Hôtel Meurice, Drouant restaurant at the Hôtel Scribe. In 2003 he became head of the restaurant of the Hôtel Meurice at 228 rue de Rivoli in the 1st arrondissement of Paris at the head of a brigade of 74 people. In 2004 the Michelin Guide awarded him his second star. In 2007, at the age of 40, Alléno was let into the circle of the greatest chefs in the world by being awarded three Michelin stars. In 2008, he founded the company Groupe Yannick Alléno, which aims to disseminate concepts and luxury products internationally. That year, he took the reins of the restoration of Cheval Blanc in Courchev
In my opinion, and before going into details, I believe that Chef Yannick should stay as a top Michelin star chef catering to high end cuisines and should not venture into something lesser. I believe that this does not not work for him. During the place first opening week, we decided to visit the new Terroir Parisien, the first bistro of Yannick Alleno serving the typical cuisine of the french culture with ingredients right from the local producers.
Olivier Ginon, a business man, Jean-Michel Wilmotte, an architect and Yannick Alléno, a Chef, have joined forces and their talents to create the bistro of today. Fresh produces, authentic materials, convivial atmosphere… a modernist interpretation of the French Terroir. Four years after the launching of the culinary movement “Terroir Parisien”, Yannick Alléno leans back to the Maison de la Mutualité, in the 5th district of Paris, to open a brand new bistro of the Terroir Parisien, pattern of the modern bistro. It's a very nice place indeed, constructed from modern materials coupled with the authentic Paris ambiance. A ceiling covered with wood, a TopCrete floor and round tables around the open bar concept. I fell in love with this place, its logo, the presentation, the printed paper napkin wraps, the table texture, the lighting and general ambiance. The waiters are welcoming, relaxed and professionals. Even tough at that time they needed more training to memorize the menu and their ingredients, but that didn't bother me at all.
We ordered: - Planche de Charcuteries et Petits pages (Fromage de Tete, Pate en Croute de Houdan, Boudin Noir, Saucisson a L'ail, Terrine de Pot-au-Feu, Jambon Blanc de Paris, Persillé au Jambon ) - Assortiment de Fromages des Environs (Merle rouge, brie de Meaux, Brie Noir, Coulommiers, Bleu de Chèvre Cendre) - Pate Pantin, coeur de laitue maraîchère. - Piece de Boeuf Français sauce Bercy. - Boudin Noir, Purée Moelleuse. - Salade de Frisee, Cresson a L'oeuf Mollet et Croutons au Lard - Aux Petits Oignons, Ma Ratinee des Halles - Navarin Printanier d'Agneau de Chez Morisson. As a first impression about the food it was utterly shocking. The appetizers were really not tasty at all, even below average. The concepts ad creations of the dishes were not good and made no sense to me. The four of us on the table were shocked. I couldn't continue the plate, my wife didn't eat the onion soup she ordered and our friends were unhappily surprised.
What's next? what's happening? This is Yannick Alleno we are talking about. I couldn't believe what was happening. Afterwards, and taking some unusual time, the main course were served. This changed our perception of the place completely. The Boudin Noir is unique of its kind and delicious, the Navarin is tasty and the piece 'de boeuf' is good. I would come back for sure to experience more choices on the menu and of the local Parisian cuisines especially that the prices are way too low. You can eat and enjoy a sumptuous delicatessen meal at only 40 euros per person accompanied with a five star wine.
As I mentioned earlier, I believe that this place is very good but not up to Yannick's standards, and it should be especially that this kind of concepts has succeeded with Joel Robuchon, which I consider one of my preferred restaurants in Paris.