L'Ami Louis

A good, but uninspiring bottle of 1990 Dom Ruinart Champagne was followed by a disappointing bottle of Bressy's 2001 Rasteau. The wine selection was redeemed by a brilliant bottle of 1998 Clarendon Hills Kangarilla Old Vine Grenache. The food at L'Ami Louis is the kind of cooking that causes me to salivate, although September is one of my least preferred times to eat there since some of my favorite dishes (baby leg of lamb and coquilles St.-Jacques) are not available. Nevertheless, there is still plenty from which to choose, including the biggest, richest, most meaty cépes one can find in France, the glorious, over-sized Burgundy snails cooked in enough garlic to cause a mass exodus in Transylvania, and the world's greatest roast chicken as well as the world's finest potato cakes cooked in goose fat and loaded with fresh garlic and parsley. L'Ami Louis is an institution. No one roasts food in scorching hot ovens any better than this decrepit old bistro in Paris's 3rd Arrondissement.

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