Haute cuisine in american soil
Haute cuisine in american soil

Travel & Places - July 1, 2015

Today Home&Decoration presents you a list of some of the best restaurants in the US. From NYC to Dallas, these are just some options, honoring the crème de la crème of America’s dining destinations.

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Joël Robuchon Restaurant, Las Vegas

Architect Pierre-Yves Rochon had his work cut out for him: creating a backdrop for a master, not a simple task. Executive chef Claude Le-Tohic had no easy assignment either, carrying out his master’s vision on the plate. Le-Tohic worked with Robuchon before, at Jamin in Paris. Guests may order à la carte or opt for one of the multi-course menus. Carpaccio of foie gras and potatoes graced with black truffle shavings presents luxury upon luxury. Savor the sea with a taste of caramelized black cod with bok choy and Malabar pepper sauce, and stay undersea as long as possible with pan-fried sea bass, lemongrass foam and stewed baby leeks. Next may come beef rib-eye with bone marrow and wasabi spinach, and bell peppers, or perhaps roasted veal chop complemented by chanterelle ravioli. The Robuchon festival is brought to a pulsating crescendo with a soufflé of bitter chocolate, or a raspberry dome, mascarpone, Calpico jelly and a coulis of black fruits. The wine list contains more than 1,900 labels with many good finds from small American and French producers. As well, top global selections highlight Burgundy and Bordeaux offerings. Stated simply, there’s only one Robuchon in the world, and an evening here is unforgettable. Make no mistake: Joël Robuchon is one of the few who have made contemporary gastronomy what it is today. 2 Haute cuisine in american soil Haute cuisine in american soil 21

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Coi Restaurant, San Francisco

Without a whiff of gimmicky experimentation, Daniel Patterson’s Coi reimagines California cuisine, acknowledging the sanctified emphasis on ingredients that many area chefs embrace, but also showing a willingness to challenge and invent. Its interior nods at nature: live-edge wooden tables, hand-thrown pottery, floral arrangements. Dinner is intense and beautifully paced, and triumphs arrive one after another. Guests may encounter chilled English pea soup with buttermilk, Meyer lemon and nasturtium; Earth and Sea: steamed tofu mousseline, yuba and mushroom dashi; and aged duck grilled over charcoal with spicy vinaigrette of duck broth and fermented flavors. Desserts follow suit, with wonderfully composed plates simultaneously bold and restrained, perhaps frozen whipped rhubarb with olive oil and spring herbs. Diners can purchase tickets for this tasting menu ($195) from Coi’s website. (Tickets are released one month in advance on the first of the month.) The price is $215 for walk-ins and reservations made through OpenTable. Wine pairings and tea pairings can be added. Apéritifs, a wide-ranging array of wines by the glass, half-bottle and bottle, as well as dessert wines, beer and saké are available. Coi uses the Coravin system, which allows the restaurant to offer glasses from expensive, unusual and/or rare bottles of wine.

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Le Cirque, New York

Where else but in the Big Apple could there exist a restaurant like the legendary Le Cirque? We give thanks to restaurateur Sirio Maccioni for his relentless effort seasoned with grand style and tenacity. Both Maccioni and Le Cirque are true symbols of New York gastronomy. The third version of this institution consists of a glass-enclosed area on the ground floor of the spectacular glass and steel Bloomberg building. Silk billows from the ceiling, a circle of porcelain monkeys teases, all evocative of the first Le Cirque, features that bear the signature of architect Adam Tihany. This all provides strong motivation for chefs to sharpen their art to situate it at par with such an impressive showcase. Le Cirque is an incubator of culinary talent. Stellar cooks such as Daniel Boulud accomplished their first steps under the benevolent eye of Sirio, gaining celebrity here before swarming this city and the world. Following the departure of former chef Raphaël François, Matteo Boglione will assume the duties in August 2015. The restaurant’s traditional dishes include Dover sole, New York strip au poivre and the paupiette of black bass, all of which are based on the quality of the product and do not tolerate anything other than a perfect execution. Additional options have ranged from diver scallops with a Parmesan foam to squab, and a rack and epigram of lamb. They are all handsomely presented. Historical crème brûlée is there, of course, for dessert. The wine cellar under the direction of sommelier Paul Altuna, viewed through its 30-foot glass wall, holds more than 2,000 bottles. Among them Paul guided us to a lovely and reasonably priced Côtes-de-Nuit Villages of Sylvain Loichet. Le Cirque is a big enterprise — all the more so given that a Café operates within its premises offering a comparable experience though more casual and at sweeter prices.

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Jean-Georges Restaurant, New York

Although Jean-Georges Vongerichten often visits his numerous offspring around the world, he also spends time behind the ovens in the centerpiece of his empire. He keeps on enriching his impressive repertoire, translating his new ideas in dishes marked with his unique and unforgettable seal, emblematic of his image of distinction and hardy creativity. Appetizers like egg caviar, a slow-cooked egg topped with caviar, and Santa Barbara sea urchin lightly breaded with black bread crumbs belong to the sophisticated anthology, as do entrées such as caramelized beef tenderloin or smoked squab complemented by mushroom-yuzu broth and crunchy rice. There are so many of these delicacies to quote that this review could expand into a dictionary. Under executive chef Mark Lapico, meals here continue to produce breathtaking thrills. Vongerichten influences not only the kitchens and chefs under his employ, but what diners experience as haute cuisine, breaking down many preparations to the bare essence by employing oils infused with herbs and spices. At this restaurant, Vongerichten’s relentless search for new flavors and vibrant, simple cuisine led him to introduce a range of wild edible plants. Expect the highest quality ingredients and risk-taking dishes. Desserts include Jean-Georges’ warm chocolate cake with vanilla bean ice cream. Among original cocktails is the Big Apple blending Industry Standard vodka, Eden Ice Cider and ginger, and the extensive wine list marries well with the cuisine. European-style service from a bygone era comes as an unexpected extra in such a sleek, modern room: the expert servers often finish off dishes at tableside — cracking lobster, slicing meat or elegantly placing a garnish.

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The Mansion, Dallas

Dallas’s grande dame of dining prevails in fine style. The beloved restaurant at Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek gracefully preserves its historic roots while embracing the future: coats and ties are no longer de rigueur attire, but the setting is no less elegant. Executive chef Bruno Davaillon commands the kitchen, turning out a contemporary cuisine. Guests can order à la carte or choose from multiple five-course tasting menus ($85 to $125). Carte Blanche, a spontaneous chef-designed tasting menu, is also an option (24-hour prior notice required). Wine pairing from wine director Jennifer Eby is available for an additional cost. Starters may include “shrimp cocktail” with horseradish panna cotta, or an artichoke risotto with green garlic and prosciutto. Next, consider spring chicken, morels and a foie gras emulsion; day boat scallop, coconut broth, cauliflower and mussels; or the Wagyu short rib, pickle salad and chickpea fry. Among desserts from pastry chef Nicolas Blouin might be toffee bread pudding, whiskey foam and butterscotch ice cream; lemon crème brûlée; and a tasting of ice cream and sorbet. Warm bread and a board of motley cheeses balance the range of flavors throughout. In addition to a wine list with bottle, half-bottle and by-the-glass selections, the Beverage Book is populated by Scotch, Cognac, well-composed cocktails and more. The brunch menu spans from raisin pecan french toast to a smoked brisket Benedict and a croque madame.

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