Throughout my travels in Europe, I’ve learned something about myself: I have really keen senses.
They transport me back to memories I’d forgotten – smelling trees like the Red Woods we used to visit when I lived in San Francisco, catching a whiff of my mom’s perfume on the bus, or biting into a piece of food that transports me back years ago.
My family first visited Paris when I was in the lower school, and though I remember loving it, the few specific memories I have come from pictures, including the Christmas card photo we took in front of the Arc de Triomphe.
When my sister’s friend came to town and treated us to a beautiful dinner at Le Relais de l’Entrecôte in the 8th arrondissement (the first one of the famous chain as my factual sister pointed out), I had one of these flashbacks. One bite in and I was transported to the memory of eating the meat with my family at least 10 years ago.
The waitress asks you how you like your steak cooked, scribbles it down on your paper tablecloth, and returns with a simple frisée salad with walnuts and the best vinaigrette you’ve ever tasted. Oh and baguette. Always baguette.
Then, you receive a plate of steak with fries, the perfect vehicle for the sauce which is so unbelievable that the recipe is still unknown to outsiders. It’s buttery, herby, creamy, saucey…the list goes on. By the last bite, you’re a bit full, but wish you had just one more bite.
Then comes 4 more pieces of steak and a refill on the fries. Heaven? Heaven.
If you can make room, get a bit of dessert. My pick was the profiteroles.
If you don’t mind being a bit spendy and like a good piece of steak, this place is definitely for you. Come hungry, but expect to stand outside in line for at least 30 mins (even on a Tuesday night).
Le Relais de l’Entrecôte
15 Rue Marbeuf, 8ème Arrondisement