Arroz en paella a banda retornado o socarrat
Alberto Herraiz
Nazionalita: Francia
Localita: 75006 París
Indirizzo: 45, Quai des Grands Augustins
Chiusura:: Mondays, every midday except on Saturdays and Sundays, from 15/7 to 7/8 and from 23/12 to 7/1.
Prezzo: 40/70 €
Menu di degustazione: 45 €

Born and trained in a traditional restaurant from Cuenca and then owner of a restaurant of modern cuisine, Alberto Herraiz left Spain in 1997 to settle down in Paris, a city where he has triumphed thanks to a simple and efficient recipe: tapas and rice paellas served in an informal atmosphere at reasonable prices. These symbols of Spanish gastronomy are obviously proposed in an original way, impregnated with substance. The genius Herraiz reinvents Spanish cuisine with has logical effects: his restaurants is always full, is regularly visited by French cooks and has been awarded with one Michelin star.
Every proposal has its own story, its own personality and its own seasoning. Like the Sangría Fogón, a fantastic cocktail based on vermouth and red wine, enhanced with caramelized orange peel and mousse of wild berries. Second flash: Gordal olives filled with butter of piquillo red pepper. In the same line came some very tasty tomatoes stuffed with Iberian cold meats. The lettuce hearts are seasoned with an attractive tempranillo and orange vinaigrette. The imagination runs more or less free, depending on the dishes, like the Cantaloup melon, proposed with capers, broad beans and basil. The Russian salad is surrounded by pickled anchovies and topped with chips. The fried green peppers del Padrón are enhanced with dried mullet roe that is grated upon. The sardine sandwich –two thin grilled slices that hide the tinned fish– is utterly nice and pertinently tasty. All the dishes have a personal touch here, that is a fact, like the grilled octopus served with grilled pineapple enhanced with the aromas and tastes of the typical a feira Galician version. Spain is always discreetly present in the air, like in the foie gras lingot served with acorn-fed Iberian ham, a good combination of both delicacies, reinforced with some red pepper jam. Iberian ham croquettes, sole with raw camomile, chanterelles and vegetables; rustic gazpacho with baby squids, apple and soy sauce, … Infinite ideas that are changed every month and culminate in rice proposals under the form of paellas. Like the reverted “a banda” rice, similar to the Italian “il salto” risottos that are fried in order to get a uniform and crunchy texture. Other dishes are inspired by the City of lights, like “Aller-retour: Paris-Paris”: a really juicy and tasty blanquette of veal garnished with a risotto that have been enhanced with butter, cream, mushrooms, vegetables and curry aromas, in which the roles progressively change –rice becomes the main ingredient and the meat turns to be the first accompaniment. And to end up singing “Viva España”, “Vive Paris” and “Vive la Seine” –you can appreciate the river from the table–, there is nothing like the olive oil pie with chocolate mousse, figs, grape and caramelized dried fruit, or like the home-made sangria, which has never been so good and gastronomic.
Vanina, the chef’s wife, makes it all run marvellously in the dining-room.