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La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris

When you think of dining in Paris, hotel restaurants are not usually your first choice but La Régalade Conservatoire challenges that belief.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris

Located in Hôtel de Nell – a Hôtel Bistronome – and patronised mainly by Parisians as well as hotel guests, the restaurant is a younger sibling of La Régalade Saint-Honoré.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Restaurant Interior

Bistronomy fuses bistro and gastronomy in a style of cuisine grand-mere, or food that your grandmother would have prepared. Chef Bruno Doucet heads the kitchen. He has worked in the restaurants of Pierre Gagnaire, Charles Barrier and Jean-Pierre Vigato before taking the reins of La Régalade in 2004.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Black Board Menu Specials / Menu Ardoise

The concept is simple, as is the menu. Three courses at a set price of 37 euros with specials on the blackboard with each course offering a choice of five dishes.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Intimate Seating

Inside the L-shaped restaurant with its checkerboard floor, counter top, solid oak chairs, the atmosphere is that of a modern Parisian bistro and, the ambience is buzzy. At one end, tables surrounded by the library and wine cellar provide a more intimate dining space.

The meal begins with the signature complimentary house-made terrine, shared at the table with crusty bread. No plates are provided, sending the message that it is a homely affair, just like what you would have done at your grandma’s. A pot of cornichons and pickled onions follows, and it is difficult to stop once you start.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris

The wine menu covers several French regions and lists brief tasting notes: “Qui? (Who) Louis Carillon & Fils Quoi? (What) Pinot Noir Comment? (How) Fruité & Epicé. Fruity and spicy. The choice of red wine is left to our knowledgeable waiter who recommends St Aubin 1er cru “Les Pitangerets” 2011 (43€) which proves to be excellent throughout the meal.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
St Aubin 1er cru ” Les Pitangerets ” 2011

For the entrée, it is time to apply the personal rule, “if foie gras is on the menu, order it“ and the Royale de Foie Gras de Canard doesn’t disappoint. The foie gras royale is served with crispy and well-seasoned chicken wings which are then topped with a Jerusalem artichoke broth at the table. Light and creamy, with a great balance of flavours and textures, this is a sensual dish that makes you glad to be in Paris.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Royale de Foie Gras de Canard, Ailerons de Volaille, Bouillon Cremeux de Topinambours

The main course, Supreme de Pintade au Beurre Noisette/Supreme of Guinea Fowl with Beurre Noisette is hearty and gamey, melts in the mouth. The meat along with its thigh fat is cooked in with oyster mushrooms and grelots onions. The dish is delightfully rich while the mushrooms add an earthy flavour. The jus is good enough to eat with a spoon or soak the remainder of the bread in it.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Supreme de Pintade au Beurre Noisette

It is difficult to resist ordering the Soufflé Grand Marnier – a favourite dish enjoyed several times at Le Soufflé in Paris – particularly after seeing a friend’s Instagram photo the day before.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Soufflé Grand Marnier

However, when it is served, the soufflé is barely above the ramekin line and it quickly collapses into a heap. The flavour is markedly eggy without a hint of the Grand Marnier which had stuck syrup-like to the bottom of the ramekin.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris

Despite ending on a low note with the deflated soufflé, the experience at La Régalade Conservatoire is one that is recommended. The flavours and fresh and bold, the variety of dishes including the blackboard specials makes it difficult to choose. The ambience is contemporary and relaxed, with friendly service and an acceuil chaleuerux, a warm welcome.

La Régalade Conservatoire, Paris
Restaurant Entrance

Photography © by Corinne Mossati for Gourmantic – Copyright: All rights reserved.

Gourmantic travelled to Paris and dined at La Régalade Conservatoire, Hotel de Nell as a guest of Rail Europe and Turkish Airlines.

La Régalade Conservatoire
Hôtel de Nell
7-9 rue du Conservatoire, Paris 9th
Tel. 01-44-83-83-60
Metro: Bonne Nouvelle, Grands Boulevards

About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is a drinks writer, author of GROW YOUR OWN COCKTAIL GARDEN, SHRUBS & BOTANICAL SODAS and founder/editor of Gourmantic, Cocktails & Bars and The Gourmantic Garden. She has been writing extensively about spirits, cocktails, bars and cocktail gardening in more recent years. She is a spirits and cocktail competition judge, Icons of Whisky Australia nominee, contributor to Diageo Bar Academy, cocktail developer and is named in Australian Bartender Magazine's Top 100 Most Influential List. Her cocktail garden was featured on ABC TV’s Gardening Australia and has won several awards. She is a contributor to Real World Gardener radio program and is featured in several publications including Pip Magazine, Organic Gardener, Australian Bartender and Breathe (UK). Read the full bio here.

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