Nakatsu, a responsible Japanese fried chicken restaurant perched in the 18th

Published by Manon de Sortiraparis · Photos by Manon de Sortiraparis · Published on May 12th, 2023 at 02:40 p.m.
Perched on the heights of the 18th arrondissement, the Nakatsu restaurant specializes in karaage, the famous Japanese fried chicken, offered in burger and donburi.

Paris-Japan as the crow flies (or rather, as the chicken flies), Nakatsu is the place to be. Nestled in the heights of the 18th arrondissement, this new restaurant run by Charles Cagnac and Matthieu de Seigneurens, two lovers of Japanese cuisine, honors Japanese fried chicken, aka karaage.

It is around eco-responsible values and precise sourcing that the two friends meet, in particular concerning the poultry chosen for the restaurant's recipes: a bare-necked chicken with fine flesh, from a local producer who raises his poultry for 120 days and produces their food on the spot.

Nakatsu - Donburi karaageNakatsu - Donburi karaageNakatsu - Donburi karaageNakatsu - Donburi karaage

The two friends have pushed thecareful sourcing of their quality products to the point of opting for a small potato producer in the Somme and local producers for vegetables and aromatic herbs; each of the ingredients being chosen in season, which pushes Charles and Matthieu to adapt their recipes over the months. Even miso and sake, and this is even more original, do not go beyond the borders of France, thanks to a producer found in Burgundy!

At Nakatsu, the chicken karaage is revealed in two ways. On the one hand, in generous burgers (11€) with an airy potato bun, accompanied by red onion pickles, lettuce, spring onion and a choice of homemade and very convincing sauces - miso tartar sauce, ginger mayonnaise sauce or delicately spiced chili sauce.

Nakatsu - Burger karaageNakatsu - Burger karaageNakatsu - Burger karaageNakatsu - Burger karaage

On the other hand, in donburi (13,50€) made in the rules of art. Inside these bowls, the chicken karaage is lounging on a bed of Japanese rice alongside red onion pickles, Japanese coleslaw, spring onion and seasonal vegetables (at the moment, leeks burned with butter and soy). You may or may not add an ajitsuke egg (+2€) marinated and served runny, and you cover the whole thing with a good dose of Japanese dressing made of yellow and green lemon juice, soy sauce, mirin and sesame oil.

The same care is given to the side dishes, home fries, crunchy coleslaw or Japanese potato salad (3€) spiced with red onion and chives, but also to the beverages that accompany the tasting. Passionate about natural and organic wines, Charles and Matthieu offer a small selection in cubes - because they are more ecological- but also sakés selected by the Maison du Saké, a homemade ginger lemonade and kombucha, just to put an end to the idea that eating fried chicken is a sign of junk food.

Nakatsu - Cheesecake misoNakatsu - Cheesecake misoNakatsu - Cheesecake misoNakatsu - Cheesecake miso

Vegetarians are not left out, with a vegetarian burger option (11€) and a donburi (12,50€) in which a big fried portobello mushroom replaces the chicken. But it would be a shame to miss out on these generous pieces of juicy chicken!

For a sweet touch, the white miso cheesecake (5€) covered with honey and lime zest will undoubtedly be a hit, as will the white chocolate, matcha and hazelnut cookie (4€). A good reason to climb the steep streets of the 18th arrondissement and the assurance of a treat at the end.

This test was conducted as part of a professional invitation. If your experience differs from ours, please mention it in the comments.

Practical information


25 Rue Ramey
75018 Paris 18

Official website

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