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Review: Alluma

This elegant neo-bistro has found its crowd with a vibrant ode to Levantine flabors—on and off the plate.
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At first glance, Alluma may seem like an outlier on the Rue St. Maur stretch of the 11th arrondissement, known most for its natural wine bars and street food joints. But this elegant neo-bistro from the Israeli chef Lirin Tal and his wife Noa has deservedly found its crowd  with a vibrant ode to Levantine flavors—on and off the plate. With the help of Name Architecture, the couple brightened up an 860-square-foot former Moroccan restaurant, transforming it with marble tabletops, velvet green banquettes, and its most defining feature, an alabaster white wooden moucharabieh wall that spans the dining room. The most colorful elements come from Tal’s seasonal five-course tasting menu, best experienced at dinner, which might include: sea bream crudo with figs and crushed pistachios, dressed with buttermilk and fig leaf oil; charcoaled celeriac served with black lentils and labneh; and grapefruit-Arak sorbet topped with sumac meringue. Don’t skip out on the wine pairing that showcases an exquisite, mostly organic selection from France, Spain, Italy, and Armenia.

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