Kei – A balanced modern cuisine
Kei restaurant is located in the heart of Paris, right between the famous Louvre museum and the Palais-Royal. It is somewhat befitting to see that Chef Kei Kobayashi chose this location for his eponymous restaurant, where visitors from all over the world are dwelling the streets. The Japanese-born chef was once travelling the world to discover the French haute cuisine. Now, one could argue that he has mastered the skills of French gastronomy and even took it one step further thanks to his roots in Japanese cuisine.
Kei restaurant’s dining room has an intimate yet modern appeal, combining white and grey colours in a traditional “maison de maître” setting that was Gerard Bessons’s former location. It is a cosy blank canvas, set-up as if to make sure that the one element that truly stands out is the quality and attention of the dishes that are served. Luxury and comfort do however remain the standard at Kei.
Head chef and owner Kei Kobayashi has enjoyed extensive training at some of France’s finest culinary houses. After a first taste of the French cuisine in his homeland Japan, the chef moved to France to extend his knowledge at Auberge du Vieux Puits (3 Michelin stars), Le Prieuré (1 Michelin star) and Le Cerf (2 Michelin stars). When he was asked by the famous Alain Ducasse, he moved to Paris to work at the famous Plaza Athénée. After seven years, Kei Kobayashi launched his own restaurant in Gerard Besson’s old location.
The combination of Japanese and French traditions ensures some very interesting taste experiences. Guests can choose five or eight courses for lunch and six or eight courses for dinner. Refined French cuisine with some novel touches is how Kei’s style can be described. This is much more a French cuisine with subtle Japanese influences and much less a fusion of both worlds. The chef’s Japanese roots become apparent through the use of colours, the sense of detail and the subtle combination of the flavours. His training in the French houses ensures respect for the product and a flawless technical execution.
Most of the dishes are focussed on high quality seafood. Like delicious red prawns, hay smoked lobster and seabass. The seabass is served with the skin and has been cooked on its scales. In every menu, guest have the possibility to choose one meat course. Like the dish with Galicean beef, dry aged for 170 days. Or the roasted and miso glazed pigeon. A signature dish of Kei is the “Garden of vegetables” in which the chef combines fresh salmon with different textures of vegetables and tops it with an agrum mousse.
Kei Kobayashi offers a unique interpretation of French culinary traditions. The Chef’s Japanese background, combined with a training in the finest French maisons, ensures a unique modern French dining experience with Japanese accents. A must-visit in the city of Lights!
Kei Restaurant scored 82 points of 100 points in our rating system. View our Top 60 of the world. Back to the reviews.
Restaurant Kei Paris
5 rue Coq Héron
+33 1 42 33 14 74