I've been to Michelin starred restaurants, some with two and others with three stars, but Laserre, which has one star, is extra special. Laserre is located in the heart of Paris, just a few meters off the Champs Elysées. A beautiful facade, professional valet parking, a super welcoming majordomo... all before taking the elevator to the first floor. I felt as if I was attending a secret meeting. My experience was a unique one...
As we arrived, the man in charge took the time to put a smile on our faces. Seeing a side room and asking to take photos of it, he responded by immediately pressing a button that made one of its walls recede into the floor making the room bigger. A hostess approached and accompanied us to the first floor.
Inspired by the French Renaissance, the dining room is a majestic space handled by half a dozen waiters trained to perfection. Each one of them wears the classiest of suits and pampers you with the utmost perfection.
The first impression:
- I felt like I was entering Versailles, the decor is so luxurious, crystal chandeliers, white curtains, thick carpet and a painted ceiling. Walls painted in mustard.
- Calm and serene, waiters whisper and don't talk; it felt bizarre until the live piano started playing.
- You are transported to another era, to the age of kings and queens.
- Menus with prices are only given to the head guest at each table.
Good to know:
- The restaurant has been starred since 1949.
Dinner starts with a wooden board on which three choices of amuse bouche come to tickle your palate. Light wood hosting a handful of seeds on which the bites are laid. Explosions of flavors, thinly handcrafted toasted biscuits accompany treats made with passion. An amazing first impression.
- Tartare de barre with caviar
- Fresh goat cheese with smoked salmon
- Beetroot croustillant
On the menu:
- Five starters (duck, homard, risotto of vegetables, macaroni, caviar)
- Four seafood choices (scallops, ragoût, st pierre, bar)
- Four meat choices (duck, pigeon, beef Rossini, veal)
The wine menu was given to me to choose from for the table - six pages of choice to satisfy every need.
After removing the silver cutlery and golden plates, food was ready to be served. Enjoy the rituals, how plates are set, how bottles are opened, how glasses are filled, how candles are lit... the fine crystal glasses, the bread plate, the fresh rose at the table... a dream experience. An out of this world experience with memorable moments.
One more surprise was scheduled, a chef's bite before dinner starts; a round plate with a beautifully decorated mix. Royal de foie Gras, émulsion de châtaigne, champignon sauvage et parmesan. A journey of flavors, light saltiness, wild mushrooms, an emulsion and the foie Gras to make all the difference.
Bread basket is ready, molten butter, sea salt, and a new set of cutlery while we waited for the starters. The piano continued playing in the background. Tasty fresh bread, amazing butter ready to be sprinkled with salt.
- I never imagined eating a starred macaroni. Penne prepared by a starred chef. Baked cheese, duck meat, black truffles, a certain finesse poured into this plate will make you moan instinctively.
- The vegetables cooked like a risotto were to die for! I never ever imagined eating vegetables with as many textures and flavors. A masterpiece uniting endless flavors, aromas and textures. I loved the emulsion, the diced crunchy vegetables, the yellow and orange mini carrots and much more of what this plate has to offer. The chestnuts, the vegetables chips... Wow!
While eating I couldn't help but look at all the tables around me. The detail and attention given to every guest. An experience indeed.
- A ragout of seafood and fish, a degustation that starts by activating your sense of smell, followed by an explosion of flavors. The juice is infused with flavors of the sea, explosions of salt here and there, grilled scallops, a bit of caviar... yummy indeed.
- Order the meat, it's really not to be missed, the most tender meat I've had in years, with a firm and enjoyable texture. Exceptional foie gras and meat served in sauce with potatoes on the side. No words are enough to describe the enjoyment... The side potatoes are not new to me since we have them in Lebanon, but unique for a fine dinner: puffed like chips, crunchy and hollow on the inside.
One unique thing that happens every night at the restaurant is the opening of the ceiling to show Paris' skyline. It was cold tonight and we felt it, I'm not sure opening it during the freezing cold is the brightest of ideas. One time would have been ok but 6 times?
It was an amazing dinner followed with a breathtaking dessert.
Crepe Suzette prepared a la minute in front of you, three crepes cooked with caramel, butter, sugar and orange juice. Soft and tender crepes, adequately sweetened, carefully prepared and good... really good! The crepe comes with an orange zest sorbet on the side.
The soufflet is simply orgasmic! Oh my God! 70% dark chocolate soufflet cooked to perfection and presented like a piece of art. Oh wow! This is the kind of dessert you rarely get the chance to try. The cake's outer, it's molten heart, the intensity it offers... two thumbs up chef!
Deserving of even more than one star. One of my favorite restaurant experiences to date is located in Paris and called Laserre.