Fontainebleau: contemporary Mexican cuisine to discover at Casa Azul

Josselin Pagès and Aniss Bencharif opened Casa Azul, a restaurant that offers Mexican cuisine fused with French, in downtown Fontainebleau ©Casa Azul

It is in the center of the imperial city, in the pedestrian area, at 11, rue de la Corne, in Fontainebleauwhich we discover Casa Azul, a very young brand that settled in March 2022 in a place that is starting a new life thanks to a common project materialized with passion by the duo Josselin Pages and Aniss Bencharif.

Indeed, a wine bar then a shisha bar more recently succeeded one another in this busy and very busy street. The Covid has accelerated the opening of La Casa Azul since the two young restaurateurs are positioning themselves at the end of 2021-2022 to buy the business: “This is the place that we chose to create La Casa Azul and to grow our initial concept which was essentially declined by the sale to take away that we concocted on rue Guérin, in a household kitchen fitted out by us and responding to demand during the first confinement. »

Thanks to a loyal customer during this difficult period, Josselin and Aniss had this opportunity to access this space which they have completely redesigned in their image.

The work lasted three months for an opening last March. Everything has been redone and redesigned from A to Z. Having an open kitchen was a priority for the curious, sharing around what we do and then we have nothing to hide, on the contrary. The clear and bright facade suggesting the two cooks in action and invites tasting. The dining room is intimate with about twenty seats at the moment knowing that we want to exploit the downstairs this winter and that the possibility of an outdoor terrace is possible “.

The mind

La Casa Azul is growing gradually thanks to a state of mind that Josselin and Aniss have displayed since the beginning of their adventure: “We want to preserve our identity linked to modern Mexican food, we favor service and favor exchanges with customers. Our way of apprehending the kitchen is completely associated with our philosophy of life. » A modern cuisine with Mexican inspirations and fused with notes of French gastronomy. “From our personal experiences, we are in the sharing and the invitation to travel. We wanted more than anything to revitalize our city of hearts and La Casa Azul is part of this approach. Casa – house in Spanish – reminds us of the desire to be close to customers and azul – blue – is a reminder of the ocean and the desire to get away from it all.

A program which, in four months, has already found its audience. “We are very attached to the city, we want to discover new things so what could be better than a place that lives around a cuisine that is not very widespread in the region”.

The team

The secret and the recipe for the beginnings of an original culinary project is this duo formed by Josselin and Aniss. Two lovers of Fontainebleau who did not see themselves setting up this small business elsewhere: “We are from here. We just moved and made our lives on our own until we found ourselves to try the adventure “. Their paths have travel as a common point, Josselin who followed a course in marketing, lived in New Zealand and then in Australia. He has always evolved in the world of catering. Extras since he was 18 in bars, but also salaried and managerial positions in establishments that make him an experienced and attentive manager. For his part, Aniss, a computer engineer by training, began his professional career as a cook.

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He went to China for a master’s degree, then HEC in Paris. After having traveled to other countries of the globe, he closes this first loop of his life in Fontainebleau. “We never lost sight of each other and it was the situation, the confinement that generated this collaboration. We both come back from our trips with the desire to do something together by taking advantage of our personal experiences and pooling our skills,” confide the two friends.

For Josselin and Aniss, it was the right time to finalize this project and do something with their lives: “At first, it was a test that resulted in take-out sales and events, particularly on the forecourt of the theater, at the ephemeral café. Our entourage pushed us to open our own restaurant, given the good feedback we had when we started during confinement “.

The plate

Tacos and quesadillas are at the center of the cuisine offered by Josselin and Aniss, accompanied by the iconic Margarita: “It’s a vision of Mexican cuisine at home through contemporary recipes of the famous taco which is declined in multiple ways while respecting the quality of the products used. »

At La Casa Azul, discover tacos, corn tortillas, filled with different elements and quesadillas, made from tortillas and fondant cheese.

“Our difficulty is finding local products that match our recipes. Our meat comes from Viand’Art, located rue des Sablons in Fontainebleau. It is our supplier who only makes European meats. Then, Normandie Primeurs which is on the market which delivers to us every morning. We make fresh food, everything is 90% homemade with us. Here, no canned or frozen. The objective is to develop our menu around Mexican street food. ”

To stand out with a universal recipe, La Casa Azul has its trademark. “We come up with a product that is known worldwide, tacos are, like sushi, a benchmark in most countries around the world. In Paris, there are canteens that make tacos, but what we do does not exist in Paris. We use the fundamentals of French cuisine to create our Mexican-inspired culinary style. Hence the name fusion cuisine. The classic tacos have an unsurprising seasoning. What we offer is different, seasonings worked and thought out. For a menu, for example, the person will eat between 13 and 14 different vegetables. We have very varied and fat-free mixtures,” confide Josselin and Aniss.

The bill

The entries are between 8 and 11 €. Tacos and quesadillas between 7.50 and 12 €. Accompaniments between 5.50 and 14 €. An experience menu is offered for 22 € which consists of a perfect selection for one person: Four tacos of your choice or a quesadilla of your choice, a packet of tortilla chips, homemade red salsa, a refreshing salad of your choice for €22. The takeaway sale is still relevant with an order directly on the site.

Information: La Casa Azul is open from Wednesday to Sunday for lunch and dinner at 11 rue de la Corne in Fontainebleau. For orders: Reservations: 01 60 96 51 17.

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