We arrived in Paris later than we had originally planned, and when I turned on my French phone I had two messages from Sola trying to confirm our reservation for that night. I was afraid they might have given away our spot, but when I called them back they assured me we were still welcome. I am so happy it worked out, because this was an amazing dining experience, even for Paris!
Sola is a Japanese- French restaurant just across the river from Notre Dame. We had never been there before, but I had been intrigued by the reviews raving about the inventive cuisine and beautiful presentation.
Upon entering the dining room, we were led down some wooden steps into a gorgeous cellar. There we were asked to relinquish our coats, scarves, and…our shoes! We were assigned little cubbies containing slippers and asked to exchange our shoes for the slippers. We then stepped up on an elevated wooden floor that had tables built down into it.
Mark was a bit skeptical about the whole thing.
But he loved my slippers.
The servers were all young enough to be able to step up onto the platform and then smoothly kneel to their knees in order to deliver or pick up plates. My knees hurt just watching them.
The menu was a “surprise” set menu- we were never given a written menu. I am pretty sure we got the same thing everyone around us got, and all eight courses were amazing. Most of the courses were fish, although there was at least one that was veal. The juxtaposition of different textures and temperatures within the same dish was brilliant, and the flavors all melded beautifully. Sorry I cannot recall what each dish was- I wasn’t even sure what some of them were when I was eating them!
Sola was definitely a memorable dining experience! Not cheap and not quick. Not for one with a limited palate. But if you are ok with all that, book a table!
Just don’t wear a short, tight skirt that might make climbing up and down from the table awkward.