Brought to you by the sickeningly successful and good looking trio behind Candelaria and Glass, Le Mary Celeste is the latest in a long line of minimal décor, fusion food restaurants which are much cooler than me.
I’d love to tell you what styles of cuisine have been fused to create the small plates of deliciousness but if I’m honest I can’t really work it out. My inclination is that it’s a mix of European and Japanese but with the chef’s brigade run by Haan Palcu-Chang’s, a Chinese-Romanian who grew up in Canada, it is anyone’s guess.
Haan proudly speaks of the camaraderie in his kitchen and attributes the high standard of the food to the team that works with him. They even do daily exercise together to discourage the normal unhealthy lifestyle associated with chefs. One hopes that these are after food service, or that they have an onsite shower. And what of the food that comes from this ‘love in’ of a kitchen?
As the name suggests the restaurant has a nautical theme and during oyster season (any month with an ‘R’ in it) they offer a carefully selected array of oysters from France’s northwest coast, England, and Ireland. We went in July, so not an oyster in sight. In order to compensate for our disappointment we ordered everything on the short, daily changing menu, and it was delicious.
The French palate on the whole is unaccustomed to spicy dishes, so in the majority of Parisian restaurants, food with a kick is off the menu. Indeed if Paris were ordering in Nandos it would go for lemon and herb. But with Asian influences Le Mary Celeste presents the rare opportunity to sample some truly spicy food; the cucumber bar snack in particular packed the perfect punch.
With siblings so well known for their cocktail offering it’s no surprise that Le Mary Celeste’s drinks list is packed full of weird and wonderful ingredients and inventive flavour combinations. Supported by a selection of natural wines and micro-brewery beers on tap. They even set up a ‘pop-up’ juice bar for Paris fashion week; I am a sucker for anything ‘pop-up’.
My advice would be to make sure you go but book beforehand because unlike its eponym, Le Mary Celeste will never be found fully stocked but completely uninhabited.
Le Mary Celeste
1 Rue Commines