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Date of lunch : october 2009

Résumé en français
Toutes les saveurs que j'aime ! J'ai vraiment un faible pour les produits asiatiques et il se trouve que Ze Kitchen Galerie...aussi ! Le bonheur est dans l'assiette, ici. William Ledeuil dit lui-même qu'il construit ses plats en respectant 3 éléments : le produit, la peinture et l'architecture. Tout est dit : la fraîcheur est là, ainsi que les couleurs et les textures. Un vrai régal pour les papilles et les pupilles.Courez-y !
Voici ce que nous avons dégusté, un régal avec cependant une petite déception de ma "copine de fourchette" sur son dessert (les figues). Le mien m'a enchantée ! Les entrées : St Jacques huitres, oursins, jus de tarama et citronnelle pour l'une et Macaronis farcis aux champignons, bouillon artichaut, citronnelle, coriandre pour l'autre. Les plats : Canard de Challans au foie gras, jus de betterave, gingembre et Bœuf Wagyu, condiment de tamarin et prune salée. En dessert : Figues rôties, sorbet raisin rouge, citronnelle et Cappuccino de chocolat gandujia, coco émulsion cacahuètes. Attention au côté bruyant (limite cantine) et aux tables quasi collées les unes aux autres.

Ze Chef of the Year 2010 (according to Gaul&Millau)

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William Ledeuil used to work for Guy Savoy, when he opened his own restaurant Ze Kitchen galerie in 2001. Since this date, he has obtained a michelin star in 2008 and opened a new restaurant in the same street, called KGB (Kichen Galerie Bis). Ledeuil is a frequent traveller to Far East Asia and an Art Amateur, both things being obvious when you have the opportunity to taste (and see) his cuisine.
"The soul of my cooking is the child in me. For me, cooking always has been and always will be a game. A game which rapidly became an all-consuming passion. The rules are simple, let your imagination and sensitivity run free, while respecting the classic base of a recipe. "

The Food

Definitely Fusion Food : a blend of European and Asian ingredients. Freshness is the key word here, not only to describe the high quality produce, but also the flavors of the herbs and spices that he uses on a daily basis. If you are looking for comforting food, and heavy creamy sauces, Ze Kitchen galerie is NOT the place for you !

For lunch on week days, you can choose between several "discovery" menus (including a glass of wine and coffee) :  a la plancha main dish (24 euros), or appetizer and dessert (27 euros), or a la plancha main with either a starter or a dessert (30 euros) or starter, main "a la plancha and dessert (35 euros). I think that there is a tasting menu in the evening which includes three starters, two mains and two desserts (76 euros).
No amuse-bouche here. William Ledeuil think they are useless. He wants his customers to fully enjoy what they have ordered and not fill their stomach with little appetizers.

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As a starter, I had the scallops, oysters, sea urchin in a taramasalata and lemongrass broth . My friend had Macaroni stuffed with chanterelles and shitake mushrooms, artichoke and lemongrass broth, and topped with chopped chives and fresh cilantro. Both starters were extremely flavorful and tasty. As it has been written above, the basis of Ledeuil's food are asian herbs and spices, with a strong presence of lemongrass, ginger (or galanga) and citrus fruits. As you can see on the pictures, the dishes are very colorful and beautifully presented.

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For the mains, I chose Challans Duck (very high quality duck from a specific part of France, Vendée, which gives big and tasty ducks) with foie gras, beetroot juice and ginger. The rare cooking I asked for was perfect.
My friend had japanese wagyu beef. "The meat from wagyū cattle is known worldwide for its marbling characteristics, increased eating quality through a naturally enhanced flavor, tenderness and juiciness, and thus a high market value" (source : wikipedia). It was served with tamarind condiment, and savory plums.
In both main dishes, vegetables played an important role : turnips, yellow zucchinis, mushrroms, and many others. I love that, because I have noticed that vegetables tend to disappear from menus these days.

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My dessert was totally decadent : a cappuccino of gianduja chocolate (a chocolate and hazelnut paste) with a coconut foam and peanut ice-cream. Yummy !
My friend was a bit disapointed by hers : roasted figs (cold !!), red grape and lemongrass sorbet. She loves figs but found them to be a bit bland

The wine
Mas de l'écriture, Les pensées , 2002, Terroir des Terrasses du Larzac. Chosen by my friend, a wine amateur. A Perfect choice.

The customers and the decoration

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The decoration is Ok but nothing to write home about and, as the name indicates, the restaurant is also a gallery for different artists. Their artwork is displayed on the walls. The open kitchen is fun and trendy, it always fascinates me how each cook knows perfectly what he/she has to do and the kitchen is very quiet. Impressive !
But we did not enjoy the fact that the tables were too close to one another and the room was really noisy. I wished I had lunch in the zen-like kitchen, lol ! From the reviews I have read, it is something that is often mentioned. So, do not expect a romantic and peaceful atmosphere here, definitely not the place for a first date nor a wedding proposal ! 

The Service
Nice but a bit cold.Efficient.
A small detail : I saw Ledeuil's cookbook at the entrance and asked, while I was waiting for my friend at our table, if I could have a look at it. The waiter said yes and then...he totally forgot me ! I had to cross the room and grab the book my myself.

As a conclusion
A very good Fusion meal in a ...noisy atmosphere. But the food is so good that this small inconvenience is quickly forgotten.
Given that wine and coffee are included, the prices are OK.

Practical Information/Infos pratiques :
Ze Kitchen Galerie
4 rue des Grands-Augustins
75006 Paris
Phone: 01-44-32-00-32
website : http://www.zekitchengalerie.fr/uk/flash.html

Ledeuil has opened a new restaurant at the number 15 of the same street. Its name is KGB (Kichen Galerie Bis)

Pictures : Copyright l'Internaute and MyFoodBox (all food pictures).