Bouillon Racine

Bouillon Racine

Restaurant background:

The origin of the Bouillons date back to 1855 when the butcher Pierre Louis Duval suggested serving a single dish of meat and stock (bouillon) to workers at the Halles. This spawned over 250 restaurants of this style by 1900. The Bouillon Racine was originally founded in 1906 by Edouard Fournier and Louis Trezel, beautifully crafted in Art Nouveau style. Much of the original craftsmanship was restored during a renovation in 1993.

— July 2010, during our honeymoon in France

In my research, I had come across solid reviews for a restaurant nearby that I suggested we go and look for. We leisurely walked along the Seine, until we realized we were actually going the wrong way, and leisurely walked in the other direction. It should’ve been relatively easy to find, but unfortunately we missed seeing the little street as we walked Boulevard Saint-Michel, so we ended up walking back and forth for a time. We eventually found the right street, and nearly sat down in the wrong restaurant, which was similarly named. At long last, we were seated at Bouillon Racine, a delightful space that had been around since the 1900s. The owners had restored its original Art Nouveau stylings, and it looked superb. But crucially, we were there because I had spotted spit-roasted suckling pig on the menu, which I knew would be a must for D. We had our usual Kir aperitifs, before settling on our lunch choices. D would of course have the pig, while I opted for the duck confit with mashed potatoes and crème brulee for dessert. The little pig did not disappoint—D described it as sweet and tender, and well-balanced by the stuffing. And it carefully crept its way up to the top of the Top 5 food ranking we’d been compiling. My duck confit was also very tasty, particularly its crispy skin. D sat across from me, making joyful faces and yummy noises at his stuffed piglet. We eventually started chatting with the older couple next to us from Australia, as it was very evident to both of us that everyone spoke English. We chatted for awhile about travel plans and general immigration policies (oddly enough) and said our goodbyes, as we finished up our dessert.

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