Chocolate & Zucchini Meets Chez Pim (and Vice-Versa)

Clotilde & Pim

Pim and I had been talking about meeting for a while : it was just a matter of patiently waiting for the opportunity to arise, since her job has her fly into Paris regularly. It finally did, and we had dinner yesterday at Flora, a restaurant operated by the young lady chef Flora Mikula, and about which I had read good things.

We had a fabulous time together, talking animatedly about myriads of things, blogs and food and restaurants and wine and jobs and books and jam and chefs and travel, chatting away like there was no tomorrow and laughing the whole time.

The restaurant experience itself was unfortunately not as stellar as I would have hoped for such a special meeting. We chose to have the Menu Dégustation Surprise (the surprise tasting menu), which turned out to lack harmony as a whole. It started out well, with a soft-boiled egg with a morel cream and truffle mouillettes (toasted fingers of bread to dip into the egg), and then a lobster tempura on a bed of ceps, with a velouté de cèpe poured all around.

But the fresh foie gras that followed was nervy and tasted off, the sauce too strong and sour. The Saint-Pierre fish went well with the artichaut barigoule (a stew of artichoke hearts) it was served on, but we felt it was somewhat overcooked. The next dish was a mignon de veau with mushrooms. This was delicious, the mushrooms tasty and well-seasoned, the veal tender with crispy bits, but that was just way too many mushroom dishes for one menu : I know this is September and all, but come on, hadn’t we had enough mushrooms by then?

Then came the cheese platter, out of which Pim and I shared a plate with Boutons de culotte (teeny goat cheeses shaped on a little piece of straw), Brin d’Amour (a herbed sheep’s milk cheese from Corsica), Maroilles and a delicious cow’s milk cheese aged in a walnut crust, the name of which unfortunately escapes me now.

Dessert was a moussy rectangular chocolate cake, with a tiny scoop of nutella ice-cream, and a roasted fig with a scoop of a very surprising blue cheese ice-cream (glace au fromage blanc et à la Fourme). They served this with a chunky peach sorbet which was delicious, but had nothing to do with the rest : this was obviously meant to be a pré-dessert and served before the actual dessert, but we were the very last diners and apparently they didn’t want us to linger much longer, as confirmed by the waiter who was popping his head every thirty seconds to see if we had finished our coffee and were ready for the check.

Oh well, maybe they were just having a bad night, and the regular 32€ three-course menu would probably have been a better choice. But this certainly didn’t put a damper on our meeting in any remote way, and we still enjoyed our lively conversation, both of us super-delighted to finally meet. Oh, and next time she’s in town, I’m taking her up on her offer, and we’re cooking Thaï food together!

Flora
36 av. George V
75008 Paris
01 40 70 10 49

  • Susannah

    Hello Clotilde. My husband and I lived in Paris for a total of six years and have just moved to my home town of San Francisco. I love your blog, partly because it helps me stay in touch with Paris. We were long time fans of Flora Mikula when she was chef at Les Olivades, but were a bit disappointed, however, when we last dined at Flora. I agree that the service and the menu are a bit uneven. I hope this changes because I believe she is a very talented chef.

    Before leaving Paris in June, we had lunch at L’Astrance. Have you been there? We had a truly perfect meal there and the service was great. It wasn’t cheap, but it was memorable. I think you would like it.

    Salut,
    Susannah

  • catherine

    salut, Clotilde.
    I decided to make my own blog like yours. But before it, I’ll have to visit often other people’s blogs and think over how to develop well.
    I won’t hurry up, because I’m really beginner.
    So, maybe, I’ll visit almost everyday your blog.

    I could imagine reading your writing how you spent that day with your friend pim( I’ll try to visit that blog also ).
    When we’re nervous and in not good humour, a woman has a bad habit of freeing from care by eating something. It makes them choose a special menu or special restaurant. But in case that those foods are not tasty, so they don’t reach up to our expectation, we become more frustrated.
    My philosophy is that to take tasty food !
    Differently from a proverb that we eat to live, I’m living to eat ?

    Desserts with different cheeses and chocolate cake stimulated my appetite. It’s really nice to eat with friends and chattering.

    See you

  • http://chezpim.typepad.com Pim

    salut Clotilde,

    It was indeed so much fun meeting you. I’m glad we finally did it! Yes, we had so much fun chatting that it took us a looong time before we ordered, after many “let’s concentrate” comments before our concentration dissolved into laughter, and then it was probably another five minutes before we could even think about concentrating again.

    It might also be interesting to note that we were the last to leave the restaurant. I believe there was a definitely audible sigh when we *finally* asked for our bill.

    I too wish the food had been better, but we had so much fun regardless, it’s hard to complain. I will post the photos of the food as soon as I get a chance.

    see you again soon,
    Pim

  • Jennifer

    C’mon, ladies, don’t be shy! I’d love to see a full picture of both of you together. :-)

  • Matilda

    Congratulations on the feature in the LATimes food section today! An agent and a book proposal, how exciting! I can hardly wait for the book to hit the stores, I know it will be as wonderful as your blog.

  • http://www.cuisinerenligne.com stephane

    Flora proposes two receipts filmed on my wesite:
    the 1ere containing carambar and the second will be available August beginning.
    Your site is very pleasant.

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