Semilla restaurant in Paris | parisbymouth.com

Semilla

Juan Sanchez and Drew Harré expand their empire (Fish, Cosi, La Dernière Goutte) with this contemporary bistro, offering market-driven plates in full or half size, in a renovated Saint Germain space with a gleaming open kitchen.

 An absolute favorite

Practical information

Address: 54 rue de Seine, 75006
Nearest transport: Mabillon (10)
Hours: Lunch and dinner, every day
Reservations: Last minute booking usually OK
Telephone: 01 43 54 34 50
Average price for lunch: 20-34€
Average price for dinner: 35-49€
Style of cuisine: classic French
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Reviews of interest

Alice Waters for Condé Nast Traveler (2015) “Over the last five years, I’ve been impressed by many wonderful little places in Paris where the chefs (and they aren’t necessarily French) are carefully sourcing ingredients and bringing back the kind of food and the way of life that first inspired me to open Chez Panisse. I ate three memorable lunches in a row here—lovely salads and little soups and one of the most perfect seafood risottos I’ve ever had.”

Dorie Greenspan for Condé Nast Traveler (2015) “Harré’s organic menu (roasted guinea hen with creamed celery or fondue of chard with mushrooms) has earned a following among the young and hip ever since.”

Patricia Wells for Condé Nast Traveler (2015) “Owners Juan Sanchez and Drew Harré and chef Eric Trochon have had a hit on their hands since the day Semilla opened in 2012. It’s usually booked solid—I like to go early to watch the room fill up.”

Simon Says (2014) “On se surprend à découvrir des assiettes bien calées à l’instar du Tartare de Pierre (Gagnaire) associant boeuf, tête de veau et hareng; le dos de lieu jaune avec sa crème de céleri et le jus de rôti pivote bien et laisse l’appétit grand ouvert.”

Simon Says (2013) “Toujours présent. Certes, je ne crêche pas loin, mais sincèrement, je traverserai cinq arrondissements pour goûter une cuisine néo classique assénée par Eric Trochon et une équipe enthousiaste et juvénile.”

Table à Découvert (2013) “Plus sérieusement, en terminant ma dernière bouchée, j’étais déjà en train de me demander quand est-ce que j’allais revenir et si je n’en ferais pas ma cantine (ça, c’est signe chez moi de grand contentement).”

Table à Découvert (2013) “Le service était charmant et très attentionné, le pain délicieux (il a d’ailleurs beaucoup parfumé la table à son arrivée). Pour une formule déjeuner à 23 € où l’on saute à pieds joints dans la saison, je dis OUI!”

 L’Express (2012) “Sur la carte, du brut, du frontal, du produit tout nu et des recettes reniflant l’air du temps…”

John Talbott (2012) “The menu changes DAILY – oh boy – and is quite interesting…The entree was a trio – a veloute of mushrooms (very very good), a chestnut “muffin” that had too much salt for me and a rillette-like/tuna-fish-salad-looking queue de veal that was also superb…”

Alexander Lobrano (2012) “…this food was so fresh, sincere, tender and young…this is a terrific restaurant, and a stand-out in a city where there’s a brilliant and ever burgeoning offer of cosmopolitan bistro cooking with good old-fashioned French bones.”

Patricia Wells (2012) “… carefully designed for the way we want to eat today… a nice mix of little and large tastes for vegetarians, meat eaters, lovers of the classics as well as the adventurous…On the menu: paper-thin slices of delectable charcuterie from Corsica;  an amazing  starter of grapefruit, coconut cream and Asian herbs; a creamy velouté of mushrooms; a must-have plate of seared shitake mushrooms…”

Le Figaro (2012) “Les nourritures y sont plaisantes, ingénues, ne prennent pas le chou et swinguent dans l’air du temps: à la fois bio, paisibles, marchant droit et sans complexe…Belle carte des vins inspirée par des dingos du genre, autant dire que les flacons swinguent. Yeux roses garantis…”

6 thoughts on “Semilla”

  1. We were intrigued by great reviews, and decided to test the waters here on a Tuesday. Totally terrific…the general ambiance felt remarkably like newer places in our home territory in SF, but with a very french accent! We loved the open room, open kitchen, general energy level, without being overwhelmed.
    We thought sequencing was weird. Started with butterfish in a creme, following by a cheese course, which we expected last. Our next two dishes came together, including a signature foie gras and an amazingly perfect pollack. The pollack was complemented with rhubarb, which morphed to a citrus flavor against the fish. We finished with a mousse in a caramel sauce. Wow…all perfect!

  2. As this makes your list of top 50 restaurants in Paris under the heading “especially good at lunch” and “absolute favorite”, I took time to cross town and have lunch there today…..and I was disappointed to be unimpressed. It was solidly good, but by no means great, and at 24 euros for just the starter and main dish (with dessert another 10 euros extra), it is FAR from being good value when compared to other high quality modern French restos in Paris at lunch. I would only ever return if I were already in the neighborhood and out of other ideas.
    You have other places on your top 50 list (as well as a few that aren’t) whose food is much more impressive both taste wise and aesthetically…and they also offer starter, main course AND dessert or cheese for approximately 25 euros or less… with a much better and larger selection of wines by the glass.

  3. Also, because we liked Semilla so much. We will be back to try their other restaurants… Fish Boissonerie (across the street) and Cosi (take away sandwich concept next door). I’m sure it’ll be tasty!

  4. Thank you for introducing this place. We were here in April this year and focused on a lot of the more popular places among locals/tourists (Le Chateuabriand, Le Comptoir, L’Atelier de Joel R. and La Regalade St. Honore). But this time around, we didn’t want to repeat those again. Semilla was fabulous. Between my wife and I, we were able to try five dishes due to the fact that you can order a half portion (demi). Highlights were the pan-seared veal breast with caramelized onions and veal reduction and sea bass “carpaccio” with pureed spinach and butter. For dessert, we ended with the “dulce de leche” rice pudding – we vacuumed that up in less than a minute. They do in fact change out a few dishes each day, but not entire menus, due to seasonal ingredients. For lunch, it is a set course menu, 3 dishes for 23 euros. Will easily come back here! -Dylan, Los Angeles

  5. We are in Paris for 3 weeks and made a reservation at Semilla after dining at Fish. The first impression is that they DINA great job with the furnishings and the staff is friendly and helpful. The wine selection was fine and the first courses came out of the kitchen in a haphazard manner. We should have expected that it would then take about an hour and a half to get the mains. We all ordered the St. Pierre which was okay. The onions were supposed to be carmelized, but that didn’t happen. The waitress ever returned to the table to see how everything was.

    The owner was behind the bar dealing with the overflowing groups waiting to be seated. Our reservations were at 8 and we were told to be prompt. If only they would have been organized and professional about the dinner. It’s was the end of our first week and the only disappointing dinner so far. After dining at Verjus, Spring, La Regalade and L’Ami Jean we expected this meal would at least be consistent.

  6. We had an opportunity to speak to one of the owners Drew Harre. He told us parts of the menu changes daily, and the whole menu changes weekly. Admittedly, they’re still tweaking the menu and he considers the restaurant a “work in progress.” We had some friends that had gone the week prior and had the blanket de veau and said it was excellent. But unfortunately, they did not have it on the menu.

    In summary, It’s amazing that the restaurant has only been open for a month. They had some very strong dishes as well as some dishes that could use a little work. While it’s true they still have some tweaking, as Drew states, it’s a work in progress, I’m confident they’ll come up with a winning formula “à tout de suite”. I would definitely go back. Definitely a rising star!

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