Paris’ restaurant scene is hard to keep up with thanks to the sheer volume of restaurants to try. However, one newbie on the dining scene that won’t have any difficulty hoisting itself up and squeezing in among the old-timers is the playful yet mysterious Miss Kō.
Just steps from the Champs-Elysées, the recently opened Asian-French fusion restaurant and bar has taken the capital by storm. Created by high-flying designer Philippe Starck and restaurateur Claude Louzon, Miss Kō’s persona comes to life through murals by David Rochline, artist and friend of Starck. Every detail in the three-fold, lounge-bar-restaurant space has been meticulously studied to create a certain order among what should be a chaotic clash of textures, colors, sounds and cultures. From the long glass bar encasing monitors airing Asian news broadcasts to the oversized overhead lights, Starck’s eye has missed nothing. You’ll see smart products neatly stacked behind the bar, Japanese-grocery style; a lightning-bolt-shaped fixture that strikes across the sky; the use of emblematic grains of white rice; and passport-like dessert menus.
In the kitchen, head chef Fabrice Monot ensures that every dish, each more unusual than the last, goes out just as originally designed. The mix of ingredients in some dishes may not be an ideal match for all palates, but Monot gets top marks for innovation. Adventurous diners should try the Black Salmon Burger, its bun dyed black with squid ink, or the Baron Rouge, a roll of red tuna and Roquefort sauce. For those looking for something a little easier on the taste buds, we recommend the salmon, avocado and mango Rainbow Samurai sushi roll and the finely sliced and lightly seared Tataki Beef. Still, the highlight of the meal was the dessert, which, at an Asian restaurant, was unexpected. The Himalayan Emperors is a light yuzu (a Japanese citrus fruit), white chocolate and meringue affair that simply melts in the mouth. After dinner, Miss Kō slips on something a little more alluring by way of a glass of Chablis and music from resident DJs that goes well into the night.
Miss Kō’s presence in Paris’ golden triangle of star attractions is a refreshingly amusing distraction from the more conventional restaurants in the area, and given the stir the eatery has made, she is definitely here to stay.
Photos Courtesy of Miss Ko and Edouard Sicot