Paris doesn’t lack talented culinary couples. After waving bon voyage to Barcelona-bound Laura Vidal and Harry Cummins of Paris Pop-up, the City of Lights welcomes a new venture by the charming American duo Laura Adrian and Braden Perkins. More than three years after opening successful Verjus Restaurant and Verjus Wine Bar, the pair are introducing a sister restaurant that serves up wine bar favorites (including Verjus’ in-demand fried chicken) and other inventive variations on American comfort food.
Ellsworth, affectionately named after Braden’s grandfather, opened this March at an address just around the corner from Verjus and a short walk from the Palais Royal Gardens and the Louvre. Upon entering, patrons are welcomed into a narrow room with country-chic wooden accents and pretty marble tables.
The restaurant is American at heart, with a uniquely French attention to seasonal ingredients and beautiful plate arrangements. Whether indulging in a reasonably priced menu at lunch, sipping a glass of wine at the bar, or passing small tapas-style plates in the evening, Ellsworth has a little something for everyone.
The weekday lunch menu is a steal at 24 euros for three well-proportioned courses. Starters focus on fresh vegetables, like an air-light salad mixing crunchy brussels sprouts with almonds and spelt, lightly seasoned with hazelnut butter and pecorino. The main dishes are simply delicious. Gnocchi with oyster mushrooms, kale, flavorful pesto, and parmesan was a definite winner; and the crispy Kentucky fried chicken with spicy cabbage (a far cry from the KFC variety!) brought back memories of family reunions spent around heaping tables of homemade Southern fare.
While many up-and-coming Parisian restaurants feature desserts that are on the delicate side, highlighting fresh citrus fruits and light sorbets, Ellsworth again deviates from the norm. The menu currently offers a killer chocolate sorbet with malt ice cream. And the cinnamon sugar and apple “beignets,” served with wickedly rich dulce de leche with Maldon salt, are a favorite among patrons and staff alike. I challenge any American to taste one of these steaming apple fritters without thinking of chilly October weekends at the farmer’s market.
The menu is rounded out by a beautiful selection of wines, including a few outstanding natural choices. Serious attention is also given to Sunday brunch, with a menu featuring homemade yogurt with muesli, seared foie gras on a buckwheat waffle, cardamom breakfast rolls with bergamot marmalade, and house-made Bloody Marys. A food-loving Parisienne friend even admitted that Ellsworth is her new top pick for brunch in Paris.
Inquisitive Parisians and American expats alike will appreciate the thoughtful and familiar cuisine at this new unmissable address.
Lunch service runs from 12h30 to 14h30 Tuesday through Saturday, and dinner from 19h to 22h30 Monday through Saturday. Sunday brunch from 11h30 to 15h.
Ellsworth – 34 rue de Richelieu, 75001. Tel: +33 (0)1 42 60 59 66
- Check out our first review of Verjus Wine Bar and and an interview with Braden and Laura about the makings of Verjus and their farm-to-table approach to cooking.
- Another talented expat serving up American favorites is Rachel Moeller. Try her famous cheesecake at Rachel’s Restaurant and Bakery in the Marais.
- Another great review of dinner at Ellsworth is up on A Paris Food Affair.