French Restaurant Review: Ardent, Paris

French Restaurant Review: Ardent, Paris

A flame-grill restaurant in Paris that remains elegant and sophisticated, where products are honoured as they are rather than excessively transformed.

The 10th arrondissement, formerly a quiet working-class quarter in the heart of Paris, has been transformed during recent years by the influx of a younger and more affluent population. This explains why so many interesting and innovative restaurants are found in this neighbourhood, including Ardent, which was opened by two restaurateurs with other restaurants in the same area, Charles Nikitits, of the very good L’Office, and Arthur Lecomte, of Bien Élevé and Bien Ficelé, which specialise in high-quality meat and fowl.

At Ardent, the idea is to create a modern live-flame grill restaurant that privileges fish and vegetables as much as it does meats. This makes it an especially welcome address when you’re seeking a good quality feed that showcases the natural flavours of foods rather than transforming them, as is the case at many modern French bistros. Chef Charley Breuvart has drawn up a brief but moreish menu that begins with hors d’oeuvres – tarama with grilled pitta bread, octopus carpaccio with a sauce vierge, or smoked tuna charcuterie – and then offers starters like a very refreshing salad of haricots verts, peas, mustard grains and nigella, or grilled lamb sweetbreads with baby clams and courgettes.

Charley Breuvart © Mathieu Pellerin

Dining in this pleasantly minimalist white-tiled dining room with modern, blonde-wood chairs and tables, we couldn’t resist ordering one of the main courses to share as a starter, since a grilled pizza with girolles, tomatoes and artichokes sounded so good. It was, too, with a nice smoky taste and a bit of char on the puffy crust and a juicy mingling of the vegetable toppings.

For mains, two of us shared a thick veal chop (most of the meats on offer are meant to be shared) which came with a lively medley of summer vegetables and a side of potatoes. I’d wager France raises the world’s best veal, and this flavourful chop from Châteauneuf proved my point. French pork tenderloin with miso-glazed grilled aubergine and gomio, the Japanese sesame-pepper mix, was also excellent.

Desserts displayed the same intelligent creativity as the rest of the menu, including poached and grilled apricots with bitter-almond whipped cream and lime-and-tarragon ice cream and chocolate ganache with smoked clover, barley praline, a sponge biscuit and smoked whisky. Charming service and an excellent wine list added further pleasure.

Restaurant Ardent

40 Rue Richer, 9th arrondissement, Paris, Tel. (33) 01 47 70 35 12,

Three-course lunch menu (Mon-Fri) €25, average à la carte €60.

From France Today Magazine

Lentils and eel at Ardent © Mathieu Pellerin

Lead photo credit : © Geraldine Martens

Share to:  Facebook  Twitter   LinkedIn   Email

More in French food, French restaurant, Paris, Paris restaurant, restaurant review

Previous Article Exclusive Excerpt: Nicole’s War by Andrée Rushton
Next Article Don’t Miss These 14 Museums in Paris

Related Articles

Alexander Lobrano grew up in Connecticut, and lived in Boston, New York and London before moving to Paris, his home today, in 1986. He was European Correspondent for Gourmet magazine from 1999 until its closing, and has written about food and travel for Saveur, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Guardian, Travel & Leisure, Departures, Conde Nast Traveler, and many other publications in the United States and the United Kingdom. He is the author of HUNGRY FOR PARIS, 2nd Edition (Random House, 4/2014), HUNGRY FOR FRANCE (Rizzoli, 4/2014), and MY PLACE AT THE TABLE, newly published in June 2021.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *