The Lautrec had always been a neighbourhood restaurant without pretension, continuously crowded, since it was the obvious stop of every stroll in Pigalle. Then, Cédric Munier, Camille Genton, Axel Bonnichon and Laurent Casanovas, four passionate friends, arrived and it became Maison Lautrec. It was given a facelift to be born again under the form of an original and timeless neo-bistro. The set is chic, delicate, full of small details, hidden rooms, and plays of light and lines. As for your taste buds, the vision of the two associates is simple, and the keywords are authenticity and quality. While following the seasons, they work with the best French products. They are set on put a lot into it and as much as possible, and they even started the creation of a vegetable garden a year ago. We come full circle, and the Maison Lautrec is way more than a simple restaurant. It’s a global project, where aesthetics, gastronomy and environmentally responsible ethics successfully mingle. Let’s visit an atypical place which will not stop changing in the months to come.
Maison Lautrec – 63 rue Jean Baptiste Pigalle, 75009 Paris
How did the project Maison Lautrec come about?
Camille and I have been working together for 7 years. Back then, I knew him by reputation, and I knew he was passionate about the restaurant industry. We opened together our first restaurant, Le Dôme du Marais, and since then, we have kept working together. It’s a real human and professional encounter of future friends. Maison Lautrec was a logical consequence. We had been wanting to open a restaurant in keeping with a philosophy both ecological and linked to the authenticity of a product for a long time. Working with short channels, cooking organic food, without pesticides, etc.
How did you design the space?
The idea was to create a bistro, with all the codes it requires: the small tables for two people, the wall seats, mirrors, copper pots and bistro-style chairs. Then, it was very simple: we wanted to work with the Perrier architect’s office, whose mother supervised all the works. Pigalle is a lively neighbourhood, where there is a real culture of bars and parties. It was important to create a dynamic between the restaurant and the people who come just to have a drink.
What are the influences of your cooking?
It’s a bistro spirit but strongly steeped in the gastronomic culture: so I’d say it’s a traditional cooking. Then, we only work with French products, or coming from our own vegetable garden. We grow our own herbs: parsley, basil, Chinese chives and even coriander. It enables us to make a traditional cooking slightly modernised, with some Mediterranean or Asian touches. We put emphasis on the freshness and quality of our products. That’s why our dishes are tapas: it enables us to offer quality but affordable products, between 8 and 16 euros.
Could you tell us about the vegetable garden?
We have had this dream for a long time. The dream of having all the products necessary to a gastronomic cooking within easy reach. We get inspired from Alain Passard, and wished to control the product from A to Z, its freshness and its type. Camille has family in the Yvelines and thanks to this, we were in position to do it. They bought a plot next to the house and we set a vegetable garden under a permaculture system a year ago. Our first harvest was in June and to be honest, it was an awful year in terms of agriculture. The next one will be better! In any case, it was important for us to work according to sustainable ethics. We are not pioneers, but this approach falls within the scope of something necessary today.
Credits : Eve Campestrini @thesocialitefamily