As is fitting in Paris, the world’s gastronomic capital, the new Cheval Blanc Paris gives pride of place to the culinary arts with an inspired approach to dining. Restaurant, brasserie, café: from one place to the next, the settings, sensations and emotions vary but sincerity is a constant on each menu. FOUR takes a look at what fine fare can be expected when the Maison opens on 7 September 2021.
Cheval Blanc Paris is the new destination for the French capital’s finest culinary offerings. From moment to moment, the taste for excellence is matched only by that for connection. Attention to detail and spontaneity, seasons and emotions, roots and exploration, savoir-faire and sophistication – this is what defines the newest Cheval Blanc Maison‘s cuisine. The food itself bares an unmatched authenticity orchestrated around real talents – men and women who put heart and soul into their professions, like the renowned Chef Arnaud Donckele, the passionate Pastry Chef Maxime Frédéric, the seafood specialist Enrico Buonocore at Langosteria or the mixologist Florian Thireau.
Limbar, the not-to-be-missed meeting place at the edge of the quay and the Seine; Plénitude, the gastronomic restaurant with an intimate aura; the French brasserie Le Tout-Paris, wildly contemporary, on the seventh floor, facing the skyline of Paris and situated between terraces and a hanging garden; and the restaurant Langosteria, crossing the Italian border for the first time to take up residence at Cheval Blanc Paris.
Daytime delights, nighttime elixirs
Like an impromptu invitation, Limbar welcomes every chance to satisfy the most spontaneous desires. All you have to do is push open the door to the vast space where dazzling city lights intersect with graphic interior woodwork. Throughout the day, it is a favoured meeting place for guests of Cheval Blanc Paris, neighbours from nearby and travellers from near and far. In the evening, in a subdued atmosphere, it is the prized secret of in-the-know cocktail enthusiasts.
Ambiance and openness
Flavours to savour and a feast for the eyes: breakfast, lunch or afternoon goûter… Before your eyes, Maxime Frédéric’s teams prepare and perfect wonders from the oven, raising the French bakery arts to their most refined state. At the end of the afternoon, it is time for the magic of mixologist Florian Thireau, whose signature cocktails always create a stir. Behind the bar, adventures for the senses are being mapped out, including a trip for the tastebuds in three acts, a sip-by-sip initiation organised around the golden glows found here in the City of Light: white gold, rose gold and yellow gold, each embodied by an elixir.
Bakery flavours, city perfumes
A ham croissant, a vol au vent, a cheese soufflé tart, a seasonal broth or generous pastries to share. At Limbar, familiar creations surprise and delight anew. That is the result of passionate savoir-faire, notably seen in the French treats, reinterpreted by each of the team’s Pastry Chefs: Parisian flan, Nantes, Basque or Annecy cakes… To each his own madeleine, his region, his inspiration.
Memories to share and a ritual re-invented, you won’t want to miss the French afternoon goûter. One emerges afterwards light in body with memories to savour. And by night, there are the cocktails: flowers and spice essences, purified, filtered, infused, cooked, muddled. Always sublime. Fine Parisian accents for the palate, stimulated by the warm urbanity of the place, between a shimmering bar and the vibrations of the city, a conviviality in constant motion.
Sense of quintessence
The gastronomic restaurant Plénitude, as its name suggests, is a place of abundance. Situated on the first floor of Cheval Blanc Paris, it is led by celebrated Chef Arnaud Donckele. A place where sensual pleasures arise from new alliances: maturity and freshness, tradition and location, familiar and far-flung. Suddenly, time stands still, suspended in unforgettable moments.
Rural culture and cult of seasonality
At the source: broths, vinaigrettes, creams, veloutés, juices… These rural traditions of potting, refining and maturation bring forth essences and perennial aromas, inscribed in history. Arnaud Donckele has plunged with passion into this ancestral art of preservation in search of new fragrances and flavours. He unites this heritage, entirely reinvented during his exploratory walks, with the freshest ingredients of the day… and nourished by inspiration as much as by ecological reflection: he creates a dialogue between permanence and present.
Treasures of alchemy
For each of his “magic potions”, Arnaud Donckele has given a number, such as his Velours n°1, whose secret lies in a skilful composition of bonito belly fillets, prawn consommé, Lambrusco-and- Chardonnay vinegar, chestnut honey and citron essence, rosemary infusion, roasted fish-head oil, and Java pepper. And then there are his other sublime sauces: Juice n°2, Cream n°7, Vinaigrette n°6 or Bouillon n°9… So many extracts of happiness infused into the moment and the plate of the day. The discoveries continue with Maxime Frédéric’s desserts, which seal another alliance: that of two artists of flavours.
Madly in love with Paris
The horizon line, the roofs of the capital as far as the eye can see. And the light-filled atmosphere of a place that greets you like a breath of fresh air, spirited and bright, on the seventh floor. Le Tout-Paris – family-friendly, warm, cosmopolitan – is an address where the sky’s the limit. It welcomes guests from morning to nightfall, from the bar to the dining room, from the panoramic terrace to the vast garden. Intimate drinks, a contemplative moment, romantic tête-à-têtes, festive encounters or lively gatherings. Don’t miss the weekend highlight: “Dimanche à la folie”, a reinvented Sunday get-together, resolutely modern and wildly Parisian.
A brasserie with open arms
Breakfast, lunch, something in-between, dinner, a last drink before going home… and so many variations on the brasserie spirit. Where the great classics of French cuisine merrily blend tradition and modernity. On the menu, one always finds the delight of being together: starters, main courses or desserts to be shared, sea bream or farm poultry to be carved, a casserole in the middle of the Sunday table or a personalised experience. And, of course, raise a toast to the sky or the stars from the wide stone bar, the effervescent source of exclusive cocktails or old favourites, exceptional wines and excellent elixirs.
Of taste and temptations
The wholesome goodness of a house-made yoghurt at breakfast. The seductive appeal of a baba au rhum. The lightness of a bulgur and crab salad. The instant and instinctive choice of a prime cut of meat straight from the butcher’s block, accompanied by “Pont-Neuf ” fries. The Gratinée des Halles or the Paris-Brest, tasted with a deft swoop of the fork: a rush to sweet pleasure. Dishes for any time and for all moods. Neither completely different nor completely familiar, all with that little extra something. And moreover: a tailor-made touch. A choice of cooking methods – plancha, grilled, steamed – surprising seasonings, a wide range of accompaniments, a wine list for amateurs and connoisseurs. In other words, here, one must become accustomed to being surprised every time.
Italy in seventh heaven
It is a story of proximity: our neighbour over the border, Italy, and its delightful cuisine, of course. But there is also a shared vision of authenticity and of exceptional products. Cheval Blanc Paris and the iconic Milanese restaurant Langosteria have joined forces to offer the best of Italy: it is here, on the seventh floor, with its panoramic view over the rooftops of the capital, that Enrico Buonocore is opening his first address outside Italy’s borders. The man who founded Langosteria nearly fifteen years ago has taken up this challenge with enthusiasm as France has inspired him since his beginnings.
Salt from the sea...
A style, a vision and a predilection: Langosteria is an ode to fish and seafood in all their forms, with inspiration drawn from the South and its seasonal markets. Sophisticated combinations of cold, warm and hot; of pasta and shellfish; of the aromas of the Italian countryside and of distant oceans. Cross the Italian border right here in Paris, with the salty flavour of the sea, fresh and always in season, close at hand.
… And wine from the land
Carpaccio of red tuna, smoked eggplant, tomato confit with basil; linguine with blue lobster from Brittany or King Crab 2007 special edition. Classics reinvented or new ones that have already become classics, all of them are accompanied by a spectacular selection of almost 900 wines, both Italian and French, with a focus on the great names as well as small producers.
(© Alexandre Tabaste)
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