Sir Winston parle français
Le Bouledogue is not a brasserie that Mary and I would have discovered on our own. When we arrived at l’Ambassade d’Auvergne too late for lunch, the maitre d’ kindly took the trouble to recommend this long-established alternative just a couple of blocks away. “The cooking is very good,” he assured us.
As indeed it was. When we arrived, all but one of the downstairs tables were occupied. Conversation was at full tilt, with not an Anglophone to be heard—tourists, if any, are likely to drop in casually, not march purposefully through the door, guidebook in hand. Pudlo Paris lists it as a bistrot à vins serving petits plats classiques such as tartare, frites and andouillette AAAAA.
I started with the saint marcellin lardé avec toast de pain Poilâne—just cheese on toast, but a great delicious gloopy mound like a melting scoop of ice cream. From there I went on to confit de canard with frites that promised to be hand-cut. Indeed they were, and to a generous size. Succulent crispy-skinned duck and perfectly cooked potato wedges—crisp outside, soft inside as if puréed and put back into the shell. It was served with a side salad fresh and well-dressed enough to eat with pleasure. Full marks.
Mary started with the soup of the day, a good gaspaccio, and continued with a second starter, rillettes de salmon with toast. To wash it all down, a half-litre carafe of a pleasant Cote du Rhône, chosen, says Pudlo, from a good source. The bill came to 64.80€.
It was just another of those modest eating places of which Paris has so many. Nothing to write home about, but if it were to appear miraculously in a trendy London neighborhood, it would be jammed to the rafters and swept clean of food and drink as if by a plague of locusts.
Le Bouledogue 20, rue Rambuteau, 3 rd arr, Tel 01 40 27 90 90, Mº Rambuteau
©2007 John Whiting
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