Cartel

Restaurants, French Canal Saint-Martin
Recommended
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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An engaging, original Japanese canteen with a spunky Laotian chef.

This already popular 10th arrondissement Japanese restaurant upped the ante significantly when they employed a well-known Laotian chef, Sourasack Phongphet. More commonly known as Sou, he’s known for the artistry and sensitivity of his fish dishes in particular. Laughing and joking, from behind his station he reels off the names of the multitudinous fishes that find their way onto your plate: red Mediterranean tuna, wild salmon, octopus or shellfish – the menu changes daily.

Sou creates original versions of classic fish dishes, sure to banish any memories of supermarket sushi. The set menus are also wonderfully affordable; €14.90 at lunch is cheaper than a lot of mainstream Japanese places, and the delivery is rather more appealing. Your starter might be seafood rillettes or the chef’s version of miso soup. Mains also impress: a spot-on chirachi (a big bowl of rice laid with slices of different raw fish), squid flambéed in sake or tender Japanese butterfish.

Unusually for an Asian restaurant, here the desserts are as interesting as the rest of the menu. Japanese-inspired chocolate fondant mined with morsels of wasabi, for example, is a surprising delight. Overall, this is an atypical but very pleasing place, sure to interest adventurous eaters.

By: Justine Reix/EH

Posted:

Venue name: Cartel
Contact:
Address: 153 quai de Valmy
10e
Paris

Opening hours: Tues-Sat 12noon-2.30pm and 7pm-11pm; Sunday 7pm-11pm; Closed Monday
Transport: Metro: Chateau Landon, Louis Blanc
Price: from €14.90 to €25
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