My F&W
quick save (...)

Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester

54 Park Ln. , The Dorchester
London , England , United Kingdom

Two walls are covered in clusters of thousands of green silk buttons that echo the trees and shrubbery just beyond the large windows, which look out over Park Lane and Hyde Park. Far-apart tables (there are a maximum of 80 diners) are set with napery, cutlery, and china that whisper luxury. There’s a sculptural fiber-optic curtain of light where the diminutive dance floor used to be. And if you can get to see the kitchen…it’s a thing of beauty. Still, the food, presided over by Jocelyn Herland, who has come from Ducasse’s Paris restaurant at the Plaza Athénée, manages to take precedence over the surroundings. Ducasse’s self-confident menu does offer the elaborate freebies we’ve come to expect, but I especially liked the I-want-to-eat-it-all bread and small plate of crunchy baby crudités with a runny riff on anchovy paste. What follows is blissfully restrained, contemporary French cuisine, with a relish for good British ingredients. Among the beneficiaries of this approach are the squid bonbons with crisp green vegetables—thumb-size portions of pearly squid encompassing a deeply satisfying stuffing that includes its tiny tentacles; a perfectly poached breast of Landes chicken in spectacular sauce Albufera, which gets its smoky note from the incorporation of foie gras; and his famous dessert star of fresh raspberries, edible silver, and chocolate. Ducasse is serious money, a minimum $150 for three courses—but there is a $70 prix fixe lunch, and if he happens to be in the kitchen himself (a rare occurrence—after all, the man’s got 14 Michelin stars to look after), you might think it worth taking out that second mortgage to pay for your dinner.

The Dish
Receive delicious recipes and smart wine advice 4x per week in this e-newsletter.
The Wine List Weekly pairing plus best bottles to buy.
F&W Daily One sensational dish served fresh every day.
American Express Publishing ("AEP") may use your email address to send you account updates and offers that may interest you. To learn more about the ways we may use your email address and about your privacy choices, read the AEP Privacy Statement.
How we use your email address
Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.