If you’re looking around the Internet for a recommended Asian restaurant in central Paris, chances are you’ll come across Chez Vong. Its large size, convenient location and inflated reputation make it an obvious choice if you’re craving dim sum or roast duck and don’t quite feel up to Belleville’s Chinatown. The décor is certainly impressive, and possibly one of the best things about the experience – the cavernous, multi-roomed outfit is done out with a slightly wacky enthusiasm in ornate dark wood, tinkling fountains, vast Buddha figures, green foliage and innumerable other sculptures and knick-knacks. Your correspondent was particularly charmed by the bathroom, where the automated toilet seat cover provided much amusement. But back where things really matter, both the service and the food left something to be desired.
Chez Vong certainly isn’t a cheap option; many tables must have been running up eye-watering bills as they ploughed into bottles of champagne and whole Peking ducks (€120 for two); and this seemed to be the clientele the staff preferred, as our more modest orders took a painfully long time to be met. Fragrant, steaming dim sum in their towering baskets were rather small and dry, though serviceable; Sichuan beef fillet was also only fine, and a scandal for €25. A vegetable plate was entirely forgettable. The lesson learned was only to come if you wanted to splash out on the fun (expensive) stuff; but for authentic and affordable Eastern delights, next time we’ll sweat it out to Chinatown.
|Venue name:||Chez Vong||Contact:|
10 rue de la Grande Truanderie
|Opening hours:||12noon-2.20pm, 7-11.20pm Mon-Sat. Closed 3wks Aug|
|Transport:||Metro: Etienne Marcel or Les Halles|