Akrame is an eponymous restaurant from young chef Akrame Benallal who previously worked with culinary legends like Ferran Adrià and Pierre Gagnaire. He opened this restaurant near Champs-Elysees in 2011, and it has quickly been one of the hottest tables since, culminating in two Michelin stars, a rare feat for a restaurant in such a short time frame. I came over for lunch and was deeply impressed with the food coming out of the kitchen at this restaurant with a rather small yet minimalist and cozy dining room.
There are several tasting menu options but I went with the 90-euro one with four courses, although there were additional small dishes here and there. If there is a description that could fit this restaurant’s culinary philosophy, it would be playfulness with technical sophistication. Each dish had unexpected surprises but that didn’t compromise the execution. I already sensed this restaurant was not playing around when I tasted absolutely juicy clams submerged in white wine foam that was simply magnificent. Pollock that came with artichoke, onion and peanut sauce was also excellent.
Sometimes unexpected surprises came for more decorative purposes than adding another dimension to the dish. I wouldn’t have thought popcorn belongs to a dish of pigeon and corn, but there was nothing to complain about the texture of perfectly cooked pigeon meat. The desserts also showed flashes of brilliance. I was surprised to see avocado in a dessert plate, but it worked very well with white chocolate and banana pieces. I haven’t seen ice cream made of pepper flavor and it somehow created unique flavor with mango and herb cream to my pleasant surprise. My favorite of the three dessert plates, however, was the milk ice cream that was just absolutely refreshing.
The restaurant has some nice wine list, so definitely try a glass or two. Akrame is another casual-looking restaurant employing very put together staffs with attentive and professional services. The restaurant is another place worth visiting during your time in Paris. If you want to see technical brilliance behind some unexpected combination of ingredients, Akrame will definitely make you happy.
- Creativity: 9.0/10
- Execution: 8.5/10
- Ingredients: 9.0/10
- Flavor: 9.0/10
- Texture: 8.5/10
Address: 19, rue Lauriston, 75016 Paris, France