39V is only 10 minutes walk from our apartment so that was a good enough reason to visit for weekday lunch en famille. Diners are first welcomed in a reception area on the first floor of a classic Haussmanian building, then sent by a private lift to the 6th floor. The restaurant is bright and very spacious, and we were given a lovely corner banquette table. Every table except ours were filled with suits.
We both opted for the 3-course lunch menu, 49.50 euros. First course was an autumnal soup of pumpkin, mildly sweet and surprisingly light. Little cubes of beetroot added texture while a garnish of briny fish roe lifted the overall taste. Daughter's order was a mushroom soup complete with soft boiled egg and garlic toast soldiers, quite lovely if a bit predictable.
Main course of grilled sea bass was very nice, the fish skin beautifully crisp and salty. The portion was rather small though, and the re-appearance of beetroot was not too imaginative. The gratin of yellow carrots I felt threw the whole dish off-balance, I didn't think the heavy cheese paired that well with the delicate fish; husband was more forgiving and rather enjoyed it.
Feeling not quite full yet, we decided to order an additional dish of pasta with white truffles, now in season. It was more expensive than our set lunch, but worth the money spent. Short penne stalks lightly dressed in cream highlighted the intense perfume of the rare fungus. In contrast, we ate a version with tagliatelli in a Sardinian restaurant only two weeks ago, where they used olive oil which I think was an unnecessary and heavy distraction. Cream is misplaced in French adaptation of Italian dishes, e.g. I have always moaned about how the French interprete carbonara with cream, but in this case it really does the job better.
Dessert was slice of pear tart served with pear gelato and pear compote. Serving fruit tarts seem a bit lazy in a fine-dining restaurant, but in this case the tart was quite gorgeous so I forgive them. The pastry held its own, there was lots of fruit with some bite left in them, and the sprinkling of caramelised almonds was quite clever.
Le 39V is a pleasant restaurant, the food executed with finesse and not veering too much from the tried and tested. A bit expensive, but it will do well in this highly commercialised neighbourhood.
39 Avenue George V, Paris 75008
T: 01 56623905