Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Loiseau Rive Gauche

Loiseau Rive Gauche is a one star Michelin restaurant located 10 meters away from the National Assembly, in the 7th arrondissement of Paris.  Boasting an elegant and cosy ambiance, the cuisine marries brilliantly tradition and modernity. A few different seasonal tasting menus are available, and for our first dinner in Paris, Kieth and I chose the 8 course meal with wine pairing for 135€ per person.

We started with a cracker made of lentils that was airy and light.  A couple more bites followed including a custard bread topped with roe, and a fun play of grilled baby corns with puffed corn crackers.  These amuse bouches were simple in ingredients, allowing the freshness of the seasonal products to shine.

Our first official course was a delicious custard of Egg with bacon, saint-Nectaire cheese and cumin.  It was delicate yet rich, reflecting the traditional French techniques.

The next course featured Venison topped with caviar and smoked potato cream and chips.  Mine was substituted with blue lobster meat. Another stunning dish with great flavor.

We were then presented with toasted bread and fresh butter.  We got to choose our own traditional knife to use, which was very neat and unique.  The blade folds into the wooden handle, and seemed to be like a hunter's pocket knife.  There was a shop near our hotel that sold these knives, so it was very cool to actually use one.

Next was my favorite dish of the night - Salmon.  The presentation of cream sauce poured table side is old school, yet classic.  Served with various purees, edible flowers, and more roe - the textures in this dish were also fun on the palette. 

The Puffed Bread with Mushrooms was like a little pizza and an interesting transition between courses.  I am not exactly sure what kind of cheese was used, but it was a nice funky one (French, I'm sure) that complimented the mushrooms and wine. 

Keith was then presented his next course described as "Meat on Embers" - a whole duck that was smoked over burning pine wood. There was so much smoke that it filled the dining room, watered our eyes, and I feared the smoke alarm may go off. Ha!  After showing off the bird to a few tables, the duck was then carved to be plated.  It was served with cherry jus and overall had a nice smokey flavor.

I ate Pig from Gascogne served with wild mushrooms.  The pork also had smokey flavor, but was a bit too fatty in some spots.

For dessert, we had Pear - an herbaceous dish with bits of vanilla cake and sweet cream.  It was a refreshing palette cleanser.

I enjoyed the Smoked Chocolate dessert that had hints of salt from the caramel.  The mousse was light and I could have eaten a whole bowl of it.

I mentioned we did the wine pairing, and mostly French wines were featured. Here are a couple snaps of the ones we tried. But there were too many and no actual listing provided with our menu, so I cannot recall the exact pairings we had with each course.  Nevertheless, it's always a fun experience to have the wine pairing and be able to try some exquisite wines that are hundreds of dollars alone by the bottle.

With our check, we were treated to additional sweet bites of house made marshmallows and jelly candies.  All in all we had a lovely first French dinner at this Michelin starred restaurant.  Service was top notch, especially by the sommelier who was incredibly knowledgeable and informative with each pour.  The ambience was not stuffy at all, and made us feel comfortable.

Total Rating: 4.25
Food: 4.5, Price: 4, Service: 4.5, Ambience: 3, Accessibility: 4.5

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