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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Chinese chilli challenge in Marais

Cold cucumbers in vinegar, sesame oil and garlic (Liangban huanggua)
Sichuan boiled beef in oily chilli soup (shuizhu niurou - see the last post where we had this dish)

Prawns in spicy sauce (lazi xia)
Hard tofu (doufu gan) with spicy green peppers
Pork slices in fish sauce (yuxiang rousi)
LOCATION: Le Lac de L'ouest, 7 rue volta 75003 Paris
CATEGORY: Chinese, Sichuanese
DRINK: Jasmine tea
WE THINK: This is our favourite Chinese restaurant in Paris for one reason only: the Sichuan beef (shuizhu niurou) which also happens to be the dish favoured by the vast majority of the 80% Chinese clientele (10% Japanese, 10% miscellaneous, according to an unofficial census by I EAT EVERYWHERE). The dish itself is worth a detour to Rue Volta and the unavoidable wait outside (the place is tiny - we accidentally knocked over a bottle of red onto an unimpressed male guest as we were leaving the restaurant). As for the remainder of the menu, it's a bit hit-or-miss. 'Hit' on this occassion was the hard tofu with green peppers, 'miss' was everything else (improved slightly by very liberal sprinkles of the excellent house chilli sauce (pictured)).
OUR TIP: Ask for the Sichuan beef to be very spicy (it comes in three strengths) as it otherwise tends not to be spicy enough.

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