Gourmet croque-monsieur sandwiches can be a bit much, but there’s enough good stuff here for a lunchtime hit.
‘Fric Frac’ is the sound a knife makes as it slices through toasted bread and scrapes butter over the surface. Such onomatopoeic phrases are scattered all over the walls here, giving the restaurant the air of a page in a comic book. And they all refer to the star of the show: the croque-monsieur.
Joining the ranks of the popular trend for restaurants serving only one dish, Fric Frac know they have to get it right. Everything is fresh and home-made, naturally, while the bread comes from the ovens of Frédéric Lalos, a winner of the prestigious ‘Meilleur Ouvrier de France’ award. The cooking is ambitious, too, with the menu listing seven different versions of the classic cheese-and-ham croque-monsieur recipe (though that’s covered too, in a high-end rendition called the ‘Titi’). Try the Aztèque, perhaps, stuffed with free range chicken, kidney beans, red peppers and coriander and flanked by chips and salad. It’s generous and moreish, though some of the other recipes sadly sacrifice taste to originality – like the Winnie with goat’s cheese and honey, which doesn’t have quite the requisite gooey croque-monsieur hit.
The drinks list is very high quality, featuring craft beers, micro-filtered water, organic fruit juices and coffee and a largely organic wine list. If you have room for dessert, the sandwich theme continues with a house version of the classic pain perdu – with added Nutella. Overall, it’s more hit than miss.
TRANSLATION: ELLEN HARDY
|Venue name:||Fric Frac||Contact:|
79 quai de Valmy
|Opening hours:||Tue-Sat 12noon-11pm & Sun 12noon-7pm|
|Transport:||Metro: Jacques Bonsergent|