Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée (Brunch)

Continuing this year's Parisian-based birthday celebrations, I was treated to what was the fanciest and most indulgent brunch I've ever had the pleasure of eating. The brunch at the Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée shares a glittering space with the famed restaurant, and with an impressive succession of dishes, washed down with a glass of champagne (or if you're feeling health-minded, cold-pressed juices). 

Is it written in law somewhere that every brunch in Paris must start with a basket of pastries? If not, then it really should be. 

Basket of Pastries
 These were fine examples of pastries - buttery, flaky, and not too sweet. We had to be careful not to eat too many though, as there were a good few courses of dishes still to come. 

To start the string of dishes, amuse bouche. 

Amuse Bouche
Perhaps the bread was a bit crunchier than what I would have liked, but I can be fussy sometimes I suppose. My choice of started was light and refreshing.

Sea Bass Ceviche, Tomatillo, Fresh Heart of Palm, Lime, Coriander 
There was a nice balance of flavors in this dish, with a not-too-overpowering acidity, and I appreciated the delicate construction of this. M chose something a little heavier.

Entree of the Day
M ordered the special entree of the day which if I recall correctly was a rich mushroom tart. The earthiness of the mushrooms counterpointed by the tart pickled onions and caper-berries. This was a M-choice dish rather than my, and he seemed to enjoy it.  
Onto the mains:
Dish of the Day
 My choice was the dish of the day - a turbot I believe with broccoli/Romanesco broccoli. I found the greens a touch overwhelming but the fish was very well prepared, tender and delicate.

M, somewhat unsurprisingly, chose the luxurious dish.   

Soft-Boiled Eggs with Artichoke Base, Truffle, and Lobsters
Somewhat amusing in presentation, the dish of course lived up to the expectation. The artichoke I found to be bland, but the eggs were exactly as soft-boiled eggs should be, with the truffle and lobster taking this to the next (expensive) level.

No meal would be complete without a cheese plate. With plenty of variety to choose from, I took a particular liking to the 18-month aged Comte, and of course the Camembert.

Cheese Plate
And a some berries for variety (although I dislike cranberries).

Desserts were impressive - crispy chocolate, light mousse, coffee mousse, light cream, berry tart. What an ending to a great meal. My favourite was the berry tart - not sugar-laden and with plenty of berries is my idea of a good dessert. 

Desserts Galore

Desserts Galore

Overall we had a great meal, and was definitely an experience to celebrate a birthday in Paris. If nothing else, the room is so beautifully decorated with a thousand or so crystals that it's worth a visit. 

Plaza Athénée

Hotel Plaza Athénée
25 Avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris, France
Mon - Sun 11am - 1pm