Previously Clandestino, then the popular Clandé, this former Korean restaurant is now named Virtus. It's lead by the Japanese chef Chiho Kanzaki and Argentinian Marcelo Martin Di Giacomo, both of whom used to work at the Michelin-starred Mirazur in Menton and more recently La Ferme Saint-Simon in the 7th. A couple inside and outside of the kitchen, they decided to do everything themselves in their new restaurant – which amazingly, includes table service. It might confuse customers but it allows them to follow everything down to the tiniest detail and answer any diner’s questions themselves.
The cooking is fresh, seasonal and inventive, thought out down to the very tiniest detail and with the occasional Japanese inflection. An asparagus salad comes perfectly crunchy with a burrata sauce and strawberries. The daily special (€17 on the lunchtime menu with two AOP cheeses): line-caught whiting and bagna cuda sauce (an anchovy, garlic and olive oil dressing typical of the Piedmont region), under which is melt-in-the-mouth mushrooms. Dessert is the triumph though: passion fruit cream, coconut yoghurt sorbet topped with a sugar biscuit. Delicious. Mains at lunch cost around €20, while the evening menu of a mise en bouche, with a choice of two starters, two mains and two desserts is €55.50.
As the saying goes: virtue is its own reward. But we hope the reward for these cooks is suitably starry.
8 rue Crozatier
|Opening hours:||Tue-Sat 12-2pm; 8-10pm|
|Transport:||Metro: Reuilly - Diderot|