I have been in Le Violon d’Ingres before its “price-cutting revolution” and I remember I was really enjoying my dinner. I don’t recall what I ate (it was few years ago), but at that time Le Violon d’Ingres was a very classic and bourgeois, “Rive Gauche” style place.
Christian Constant, the chef of Le Violon d’Ingres has followed the Robuchon example. He cut the prices, redesigned the decor and turned the place to a dining spot for those who search for every day casual food.
It seems that the model works very well. You will not find that many high-end places in Paris where 3 courses dinner menu ( a starter, a main course and a dessert) costs € 45. Not very fancy or rare products, but you can feel the huge emphasis on the freshness and the quality of the ingredients.
The service was very pleasant, but you do get that “don’t stay too long” feeling. There was some kind of “in a hurry” atmosphere, similar to what I noticed in Chez L’Ami Jean …So better just come on the exact time of your reservation…
“Tongue and foie gras “millefeuille”, green beans”. I usually don’t like “insides” like tongue, but my friend gave me to try it and actually it was excellent.
Apart from the menu for 45€, there were also extra “à la carte” dishes. My entrée was this crab and citrus salad with potato chips. Those who love acidity, its an excellent dish. Chips were not necessary though.
“Pollack (a member of the cod family) filet, chorizos sausage, “mousseline” of green peas”. I just loved the marriage of thick fish filet and crispy sausage.
“Sea bass filet with almonds and Sicilian capers sauce”. Truly excellent dish.
“Christian Constant chocolate tart”. The dessert was not “shining” compared to the food. Very bland taste, but maybe my choice was wrong… There were some great sounding desserts like “vanilla soufflé with salted butter caramel” … Mmmm…
I loved the dinner. Simple, nothing conceptual or stimulating, but at the same time delicious food, cosy environment… Something you would want to eat every day. Next time I will try “the truly “Montalbanais” cassoulet. The cassoulet made by Christian Constant must be very special…