Sunday, December 30, 2012

L'atelier de Joël Robuchon

Splurge of my Christmas Hong Kong trip - lunch at L'atelier de Joël Robuchon.  Since I didn't go anywhere this Christmas, I could afford a little extravagance.  

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Tip: it's lightly cheaper to dine at L'atelier than Le Jardin and the menu offering is exactly the same.  (Except if you wanted Les Fromages, which you will have to pay a HKD50 surcharge at L'atelier or if you want to choose your own dessert from the trolley, option not available at L'atelier.) 

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I ordered the 3 course lunch since I know I will be full just from eating their outstanding bread.  The bread basket is filled with at least nine different types of breadMy favorite is the bacon cumin breadsticks and cheese baguette.  I think I ate 6 or 7 pieces of bread alone!!  (It's so good, you can't just stop at two...)

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the amazing bread basket
can I just get the bread basket to go?

Next came the amuse bouche.  I honestly don't remember what it was called exactly but I remembered the cheese cracker was cheesy and the veloute was creamy.  (I hope I didn't make the chef cry for not remembering...  my brain was in "eat" mode rather than "listen" mode when the waiter presented us the dish.)

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Amuse-Bouche
The soup (Le Bouillon de Volaille) was next.  The presentation is lovely and I love the crispy waffer on top (made with meat sauce nonethelessReallyHow?).  The soup is savory and I love the duck confit.  It gave an ordinary chicken soup a twist and made it interesting with the additional texture.

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LE BOUILLON DE VOLAILLE
Fine chicken thick broth with duck confits, seasonal vegetables and chestnuts
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LE FOIE GRAS
Duck foie gras terrine with refreshing herbs salad on lemon marshmallow

For the main course, I chose the wagyu cheek (La Joue de Boeuf).  I liked the contrast between the deep fried cheek cube and the stew and the celery cream is a nice compliment to the beef but overall it was too heavy for me.

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LA JOUE DE BŒUF
Braised Wagyu beef cheek with celeriac puree and beetroot chips
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LA DINDE DE BRESSE
Bresse turkey stuffed with foie gras and black truffle, stewed chestnuts and fennels
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LE HOMARD
Maine lobster fricassee on mushroom spelt risotto with yellow wine emulsion

Dessert is always the way to end an amazing meal.  I had the apple tart (La Pomme).  (I figured Le Mont-Blanc would be too sweet for my liking)  Probably my favorite dish besides the bread.  It's the perfect balance of tangy and sweet and helped my case of heartburn from the savory wagyu cheek.

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 LA POMME
Caramelized apple “tarte tatin” with cider infused mousse and vanilla ice-cream
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LE MONT-BLANC
Classic Mont Blanc with chestnut cream, chestnut ice-cream and cassis coulis
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LE PARIS-BREST
Traditional “Paris-Brest” with praline cream and pear sorbet

The fantastic meal came to an end after a cup of earl grey and petit fours.  The bill came out to be ~HKD500 per person (service charge included, no alcoholic beverage.)  It's expensive for lunch but considering Robuchon is a Michelin 3 stars restaurant, it's actually quite reasonable.

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Petit fours
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Petit fours

If you do decide to try, do make reservation and enjoy a relaxing afternoon.  Leave yourself plenty of time so you won't feel rushed.  It's a French restaurant!  (We had a noon reservation and didn't leave until 1530.) 

FTC Disclaimer:  I am not affiliated with the restaurant and I paid for my own meal.

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