104, quai de Jemmapes, in the 10th Arrondissement. 09 81 99 98 88.
Closed Sunday dinner and Mondays.
What were you doing when you were 24 years old? Okay, don’t write me and tell me you are 24 now and running a big company. I know it’s possible, but still. There’s a 24-year-old French woman named Amélie Darvas who we marveled at recently when dining at the newly opened Haï Kaï, where she is the head chef. It’s one of the newest Paris restaurants in the city and was recommended by Amandine, who runs Rue Amandine, a gg2p GO-Card partner.
Located on the canal Saint-Martin, Haï Kaï has the type of decor I love—white and clean with a bit of flea-market chic thrown in. The green tile in the kitchen, which is open for all to see, caught my eye.
Ingredients include market-fresh produce and locally sourced meat and fish, as well as coffee from the gg2p partner Coutume. Prices are affordable for the talent in the kitchen, and the wine list is varied and interesting. And Haï Kaï is open for breakfast!
Our group of six sat down and enjoyed the last four oysters available that night. A mushroom dish was labeled divine by my niece, and my sister raved about a white fish that she had never tried and was nervous to order. Usually, the more diners there are in your party, the greater the chance that something will go wrong. But even with my fairly picky bunch, all was copacetic.
Dessert was not great, so I recommend skipping it until Haï Kaï gets a proper pastry chef. Service was very friendly but irregular, and I chalked that up to Haï Kaï’s having been open for only a month when we dined there. There are a lot of very trendy places on the canal Saint-Martin that offer good but basic food. This place tries a little harder and is worth your attention.