France: Paris: Where to Eat: Local Cuisine: Jeanne A
Run by restaurateur Frederic Hubig Schall, who at least one renowned Paris-based critic has compared to New York’s Danny Meyer, this small wine bar and restaurant is a great addition to the ever-more-exciting 11th arrondissement. Hubig Schall calls this congenial place an épicerie à manger (a grocery store in which you can eat), and indeed, like Simone & Nicola, the setting is one that is all about food: a large meat counter with jambon and charcuterie up front and the small tables surrounded by shelves lined with delicacies like pickled vegetables and mustards.
The well-edited wine list is written on a large blackboard, as are the small-plate dishes that are meant to be shared. Everything, from the silky salted butter to authentic jambon de Paris is sourced from Paris’ best addresses (I dare anyone to resist the exceptional, juicy bread from Pain du Quartier). The young, good-looking staff is friendly and helpful, the crowd stylish and mostly Parisian, and the cool foodie vibe is one that would not be out of place in Brooklyn. Bigger appetites should start with a drink here and then head to beloved bistro Astier, which is located next door. Jeanne A is open on Sunday and Monday, notoriously difficult evenings for a good meal. Closed Tuesday and Wednesday.— Simone Girner 04/19/2011