12-14-17 Restaurant Arpège

Our deliberate decision to try a restaurant on the Michelin three star listing was while we visited in San Sebastian Spain at Arzak. We went to this restaurant after speaking to friends who had either been to the restaurant or heard people who had been there. Arzak received its third Michelin star in 1989 and has maintained them all since that time. The lunch we had was extremely memorable and has continued to be a fond memory of our trip to Spain. Sometime after going to Arzak I learned about another listing of the 50 Best Restaurants in the world and found Arzak located at number 30.

Since that time we have visited a number of great restaurants ,two of which were on this listing – Le Caladre #29 in Rubano, Italy and The Ledbury #27 in London. Now we are in Paris where great restaurants are plentiful and there are four of the 50 best restaurants and we decided to try Arpège – listed as number #12 (lowest number on the list in Paris) for a lunch.

The entrance is unremarkable but inviting.

Arpège received its third Michelin star in 1996 and celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2016.

Janeen with Chef Alain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Owner – Chef Alain Passard removed red meat from his menu in 2001 and the following year he bought a biodynamic farm in Sarthe and since then has acquired two more farms in Eure and Manche. Produce from one of Passard’s three gardens is delivered to Arpège on a daily basis arriving just in time for lunch service. These vegetables are famously known to “never see the inside of a refrigerator”.

Cover of the menu
Terre & Mer – this was the tasting menu David followed
L ‘Automne des jardins – one of the three options in the menu
Grands crus du potager – another of the menu options

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were four menu options – a ‘surprise’ vegetarian menu, an a la carte menu and a tasting menu. We selected one ‘surprise’ and one tasting menu for our adventure down this road.

The interior of the restaurant is not very large – only seating for maybe 30.
Dining room

Wine was either by the glass or bottle and we choose to start with a glass of Champagne, added a bottle of Sancerre and a Domaine Saint Nicolas from the Loire.

Amuse bousch – Home made potato chips with light tastes on top.

Starting with the Amuse-bouche and ending with 3 desserts, the meal lasted the better part of 4 hours! Never rushed, always-attentive service and wonderful tastes were presented for our pleasure. While we tried to keep some idea of what we were having it was impossible to keep track! There was at least 12 courses and we didn’t have the same menu so there where LOTs of different things to sample. Yes, I did get a menu for review at home but even with that it is difficult to bring the pictures together with the descriptions. Pictures, below, are “maybe” in the order presented to us but it’s really hard to decide!

Butternut soup
Beetroot and beets
A velvety autumn soufflé with onions
Hot Cold Egg in herb syrup
Hot Cold Egg in herb syrup spoon full!
Scallops in an orange infusion
Scallops Thinly sliced autumn radish 1
Ravioli multi colored patato with a mushroom broth
Celery cream with Cevennes mushrooms topped with parmesan
Vegetable tartar and horse radish with full earth beets
Jerusalem artichoke with a large spoon of caviar with crystal champagne
Lobster with a honey vail
Multi color couscous with autumn with marked vegetables
Oak Smoked potatoes with onion tart
Janeen’s Monk fish with baby brussel sprouts, potatoes and foam
David’s Monk fish with baby brussel sprouts, potatoes and foam
Dessert duck breast with hazelnut and dark Carmel drizzle
Louise Passard roast Chicken
Onion and gratian
First sweet dessert course
Dessert hazel nut ice cream with lemon verbena sauce
Dessert crispy phyllo with many layers
Dessert crispy chocolate phyllo with many layers 1

 

Would I go back to this restaurant? Without a hesitation! However, there are so many other great restaurants to try all over the world so my goal is to continue to visit those places on the listing. Next up are those five restaurants listed in the USA!

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