L’Ambroisie

Sea bass with artichokes and caviar
Sea bass with artichokes and caviar

When it comes to 3 Michelin starred  L’Ambroisie in Paris (9 Place des Vosges  75004 Paris;tel.+33 1 42 78 51 45) there are two camps of opinions : for some it’s the ultimate French haute gastronomie experience, for others – the restaurant is too classic and boring.

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Dining at L’Ambroisie is like traveling back in time in many aspects. The whole experience (the magnificent 17th century townhouse, impeccable,old fashioned (in the good way) service and classic cooking with some of the dishes dating back over 20 years) was light years away from trendy gastronomic restaurants where borders between the diners and the kitchens are melting and the good old à la carte is being replaced by tasting menus created from the best ingredients of the day. And this is precisely the reason why I enjoyed L’Ambroisie so much. Every dish, starting from the perfectly crispy bread,delicate sea bass filet (cooked in the oven,normally used at restaurants to keep the plates hot), finishing with the incredibly light dark chocolate tart, was sublime. Very expensive even by Parisian 3 Michelin institutions standards, but something that will stay in my memory for a long time…

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The first amuse bouche : choux pastry with caviar
The first amuse bouche : choux pastry with cream and caviar
The second amuse bouche : foie gras with pepper crust
The second amuse bouche : foie gras with pepper crust
Soft boiled and boiled eggs with watercress sabayon,green asparagus and caviar
Soft boiled and boiled eggs with watercress sabayon,green asparagus and caviar
Caviar (I was told, from China)
Caviar (I was told, from China)
Soft boiled and boiled eggs with watercress sabayon,green asparagus and caviar
Soft boiled egg with watercress sabayon,green asparagus and caviar. Luxurious in the taste and the appearance.
Soft boiled and boiled eggs with watercress sabayon,green asparagus and caviar
Boiled egg
Langoustines with sesame pastry leaf and curry sauce.The best langoustines I've ever had: tender and delicious.
Langoustines with sesame pastry leaf and curry sauce.The best langoustines I’ve ever had: tender and delicious.
Langoustines with sesame pastry leaf and curry sauce
Langoustines with sesame pastry leaf and curry sauce
Sea bass with artichokes and caviar. The caviar was slightly warm. What impressed me most was the way the fish was cooked. So delicate and melllow.
Sea bass with artichokes and caviar. The caviar was slightly warm. What impressed me most was the way the fish had been cooked. So delicate and melllow.
Sea bass with artichokes and caviar
Sea bass with artichokes and caviar
Dark chocolate tart ( crusty pastry and chocolate sabayon).You will eat it even if you are not hungry anymore!
Dark chocolate tart (crusty pastry and chocolate sabayon).You will eat it even if you are not hungry anymore!
Dark chocolate tart
Dark chocolate tart
Petit fours
Petit fours
The chefs
The chefs
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The restaurant doesn't offer any tasting menus.The langoustines and the sea bass I ordered were half portions,but not excactly half price. As far as I remember, the discount for a half portion dish was around 30%.
The restaurant doesn’t offer any tasting menus.The langoustines and the sea bass I ordered were half portions,but not exactly half price. As far as I remember, the discount for a half portion dish was around 30%.
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View comments (7)
  • Michael Booth

    Forgive the name-drop (kerlunk), but Francois Simon once said to me that perhaps these kind of places should be supported by the French cultural ministry as national treasures, and I think he has a point. It genuinely brings joy to my heart just to know a restaurant like this still exists. That said, the food, particularly that chocolate dessert, does look a little ordinary, particularly when one considers the hilarious prices…

    • luxeat

      I must second what F. Simon had said!Yes, I know the tart looks very ordinary, but once you taste it , you are almost shocked how good it is. And the prices are really crazy at L’Ambroisie. I don’t know how they can justify them..

  • Andrea

    Thanks for this report. But caviar from China ? I don’t understand….

    • luxeat

      I guess that as most of the caviar is cultured now, it doesn’t matter from where it comes, as far as the quality is really good…

      • Michael

        it also looks like they used a steel spoon :/

  • http://www.xanga.com/aromes aromes

    Hi Aiste. I am glad you finally got to enjoy L’Ambroisie, since I remember you had a lesser enjoyable meal there in the past. For me, the meal I had there was one by which I judge all other French classic meals. So, needless to elaborate on how I highly regard L’Ambroisie, Lol. Though Pacaud was cooking on lunch and there were just 3 tables available, the day I went there (couple of years ago). Not too sure if he has now retired, but if it is the case, and that they have kept the standards that high, then I am very proud of this place. Of course, at those prices I am not sure I will go back, but my meal at L’Ambroisie will always have a special place among the few ultimate restaurant meals I ever enjoyed, easily up there with the finest meals I had cooked by Olivier Roellinger, Jacques Maximin, Christian Constant, Frédy Girardet in their heydays. @Michael Booth: regarding the choco dessert, I second Aiste: a great one. But again, expectations always lead to disappointments, high prices too, so I would recommend to anyone who are nervous about cost performance to stay away. For me, eventhough cost performance matters, nothing will ever distract from my high consideration of this place. As usual, different strokes for different folks.

    • luxeat

      Hi Aromes, ” ..so I would recommend to anyone who are nervous about cost performance to stay away.” I totally agree with that!