Les Tablettes de Jean-Louis Nomicos

lestablettes-14It is common knowledge that nowadays the Spanish vanguard, the Nordic cuisine and even the Peruvian stole the spotlight of the French Nouvelle Cuisine, as it is well evident in rankings like The World’s 50 Best Restaurants – whether you agree or not…

But putting modernism, tendencies, and new ways to eat aside, I remain fascinated by the French cuisine, both because of the evolution of Antonin Carême and Jules Gouffé’s cuisine throughout time or because of Escoffier, during the development of Haut Cuisine, managing to create a brigade scheme that remains till today in the majority of great restaurants. Obviously, not forgetting the cuisine of Bocuse, Troisgros, Senderens, Alain Chapel or Roger Vergé, who started a movement that played with traditions and the cuisine.

Nomicos accompanied Ducasse in several restaurants until he handed him the kitchen of the gorgeous La Grande Cascade (see), where he won his first star and later in the famous Lasserre (one of the main gastronomical institutions in Paris) where he won two stars and stayed for 10 years until deciding to break some barriers and open his Les Tablettes in 2011, having conquered his only star since 2012.

lestablettes-13Establishing on his own, Jean-Louis Nomicos decided to abandon the classical, and almost imperial, side of Lasserre’s cuisine, to embrace his great passion and origins, the Mediterranean; creating a fresher, lighter and seductive cuisine, always with the rigor and exaction his formation brought

And that is well noticeable when entering the restaurant, quickly forgetting we’re in Paris and being transported to Manhattan or London, given the cosmopolitan decoration, the tables without linen and the fluidity of the service.

lestablettesAmuse Bouche

If I had talked about breaking barriers and of a new Mediterranean side of Nomico’s cuisine, all doubts fall apart when at the table arises a brilliant buckwheat bread with olive oil (yes, we’re talking of a Parisian restaurant without butter!) and a small amuse bouche made with Scarmoza cheese, onion, parmesan, fennel and tomato, perfectly activating our taste buds.

lestablettes-2Parmesan Sablé, Zucchini Velouté, artichokes, pepper and olive
A summery dish, with fresh and raw vegetables contrasting with the velvety creams and the velouté. a beautiful texture and flavor game, elevated by the parmesan sablé that brings dairy and spicy notes to the dish. A great start!

lestablettes-3Mullet, Zebra and Rome tomatoes, saffron rouille  
Another dish of great elegance and freshness where once again the style of the chef’s cuisine is quite noticeable. On point fish, with a crunchy and delicate cape, accompanied by super fresh zebra tomatoes and green apple, and a Rome tomato cream of quite intense flavor, all connected by the great saffron sauce. A great dish that shows very well the respect for seasonal produce, and its taste and simplicity.

lestablettes-4Truffle Macaroni 
This is the dish that made Nomicos’s cuisine at La Grande Cascade famous, and which accompanied him ever since. A sinful macaroni, filled with truffles, celery and foie gras gratin with bechamel, and paired with an amazing sauce of meat and truffles. This dish is comfort food taken to another level, one you cannot easily forget, and that I wish to taste in truffle season. Delicious!

lestablettes-5 And the employee read my thoughts and left the small sauce pan so I could give use to the bread.  

Harmonizing the first dishes was a Viognier 2015, Marius, of Michel Chapoutier. A modest wine, without great history, where the highlight goes to the notes of white flowers and pear, with an interesting freshness in the mouth and a structure that benefits the food.

lestablettes-7Filet mignon of Salers breed, eggplant, soufflée potatoes and Provencal sauce
Another flawless dish, yet in terms of surprise and taste a few points behind the first ones. Tasty meat, and on point, with the highlight going straight to the great provencal sauce and the amazing soufflée potatoes, that certainly leave any cook with the nerves on edge.

On the glass was a Côtes du Rhône Parallèle 45 from 2014 , the input range of the house Paul Jaboulet Aîné, presenting itself as an easy wine, of elegant color and a thin body, full of red fruits and some spicy notes in the end that went well with the meat and the sauce. A simple, not compromising pairing!

lestablettes-10Seems like something special is yet to come! 

lestablettes-8Red fruitsfromage Blanc emulsion and raspberry and basil ice cream
At first sight it doesn’t seem like a dessert created with a basis on French pastry, but once we try the firt spoon we easily realize all the predicates for a great dessert are there, and fresh as I like the most, excellent texture of the ice cream, balance of sweetness and greasiness of the cheese with touches of freshness and acidity of the lime zest. A great ending.

But it was not time to leave yet, and with the room almost empty, it was time to some gourmand and delicious petit fours while discussing a bit with the sommelier the benefits of serving Port at lower temperatures, and tasting the elegant and refined Graham’s Tawny 30 years to which nobody stays indifferent. A wine that fits quite well the French taste for fortified flavors.


lestablettes-9petit fours – baba au rhum, chocolate and caramel and mascarpone with basil

The Service goes along with the relaxation of the cuisine, very different from the previous home of Nomicos, with a smile on the face, but with an interesting rigor and precision masked with some informality.

Final Remarks
Jean-Louis Nomicos created in his Les Tablettes a gastronomical destiny of reference in Paris, not getting carried away by his classical past, in a Nouvelle Cuisine style. He embraced his origins, and the Mediterranean and Provencal flavors he grew up with, creating a menu with a certain feminin, elegant and refined side.

Maybe that’s why he was chosen to head the kitchen of Frank, the restaurant designed by Frank Gehry at the Louis Vuitton Foundation.

The prices are the usual for this level of restaurant in the city of light, but Les Tabletettes presents one of the best starred options for lunch with the “Club” menu, for 58€ (starter, main course, cheese, dessert, coffee and wine).

A mandatory destination!

Les Tablettes de Jean-Louis Nomicos
(33) 1 56 28 16 16
Avenue Bugeaud, 16  – Paris

Versão Portuguesa

Text: João Oliveira | Photos: Flavors & Senses 

We were at Les Tablettes by invitation, whereas this not alter our work, being the opinion and the text of the exclusive responsibility of the author.
Graham’s 30 years provided by Graham’s Port.

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