I previously mentioned that Martin Boire et Manger had not yet reached the levels of devotion that my heart has towards its sister restaurant, Au Passage. But Martin Boire et Manger (i.e. Martin) has one of those rare jewels in its crown that not all great Paris restaurants have: the terrace & open windows that provide the long awaited joy of outdoor summer eating.
After a recent visit on a beautiful evening, with those wide open windows, practically no store front at all once they open them all up, with these plates… It may just be a matter of time before Martin becomes just as much a go-to choice for an evening with friends as my usual standby Au Passage. Martin spring & summer; Au Passage fall & winter. Like a fashion line for eating.
Our selections for this bright summer night:
Green bean salad with mint, parmsesan & croutons
Swiss chard with egg in a salty anchovy sauce
Seared hake with peas
White fish with zucchini
Lamb, rare, with mint and smoked eggplant
The best thing about small plates, and Martin Boire et Manger in particular, is that you get to try so many things without feeling the pain in your wallet.
We tried 8 different dishes split among three of us, and this spread, along with a bottle of Anjou and 3 glasses of red set us back all of 40 euros each.
That’s a steal in Paris. I’ve done the same many times since this meal – lots of plates, lots of wine, and all around 40 per person or less.
How could I ever expect to go back to American-style eating of getting one big plate of something as your main and nothing else?
Eating 8 different dishes like this in an evening, and knowing you can come back next time and have it all be completely different – this is one of my absolute favorite things about eating in Paris.
The sear on that fish.
The perfection of that lamb.
Would you like a cheese plate? Answer is always “yes”.
And this fabulous ganache.
Did you get all that?
On Another Occasion…
A follow-up meal a week or so later gave us many more gems, including mussels in Harissa, sautéed cauliflower, and a giant Thai meatball in bouillon.
I think that gives you a good idea of what to expect. The food is always fresh, interesting, and there’s a nice variety. But you have to get there early these days to get a seat because the secret’s out, and everyone knows what a steal this place is. It has a regular following, to say the least.
I love the rustic wood tables, colorful array of different plates, friendly service, and open air eating.
On top of that, since they don’t take reservations, if you find yourself without a reservation and want to eat awesome food, then you’ve got a perfect go-to.
Martin Boire et Manger
24 boulevard du Temple 75011
Lunch Tuesday to Friday 12-3pm
Dinner Tue & Wed 7-11pm; Fri & Sat 7pm-midnight
Small plates served all day on Saturday