Pierre Sang

55 Rue Oberkampf, 75011 Paris, France

He loves to work with French produce, but Pierre Sang has also introduced French people to flavors they aren’t used to. He was born in Korea and adopted by a French family when he was seven. In his cooking, he incorporates some of his heritage—kimchee-like foods come up a lot. There’s no written menu: You pay a set rate for a six- to eight–course dinner, and you get whatever the chefs have concocted.

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A 'Top Chef's' First Restaurant in Paris

No phone, no reservations. Things might seem strict and serious at Top Chef finalist Pierre Sang’s first restaurant in Paris but it’s all creative flavor pairings and playful presentations in the kitchen.

On the inside: warm, exposed stone walls, the communal counter (seats 14) and the magnificent natural light that suffuses the polished open kitchen from large accordion glass doors are all striking features without removing focus from the plate. And it certainly deserves your attention.

The chirpy sommelier begins by explaining the ‘informal’ dining concept, which forgoes formalities like menus and cloth napkins but includes a terrific wine pairing, and asks guests to stipulate any food allergies. From there, Sang-Boyer’s adroit team prepares the first sequence in a series of small plates. It’s in the subtle kitchen theatrics that follows that the experience truly shines. Sous-chef Nohsun Lee dresses a train of plates to perfection, the sommelier flits between diners to discuss the wine selection and Pierre leads it all, making time to check in with each guest.

Ingredients are sourced almost exclusively from neighborhood purveyors and courses change daily, sometimes even over the course of an evening according to Pierre’s whim. Impossible to be disappointed. For the best experience, opt for a seat at the communal bar that overlooks the kitchen (but come early to snag the spot!).

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