Restaurant Louis is a really small place of about 10 tables that has been open a couple years and draws a fairly casual crowd. The decor is modern with a turquoise and gray color scheme carried out down to the table candles. Tables are very close and most are 2-tops but all are set with chairs as opposed to a bench seat. We were fortunate with this though, as it allowed us to interact with the lovely couple sitting next to us. They offer only a surprise tasting menu and you can choose between 6 and 8 courses. They offer wine pairings but unlike the menu statement the waiter said not all courses come with a pairing, however pairings are all wine. The lighting is a tad on the bright side but the up side of that is better pictures. The noise level is good.
The evening starts with a few amuse bouche: a rice crisp with egg yolk which was nice but mild; a pan crisp with curry and camembert which was a very good creamy cheese on top of a buttery cookie; a honey and mustard meringue with yuzu which had a little zing, sweet and chew combined in a nice bite.
The tasting started with sea urchin and cauliflower bits that were topped with cocoa dust and cauliflower cream. The bits of cauliflower were raw and gave the dish a tough texture while also bringing a stronger taste of cabbage than I would have chosen.
Brown bread was brought by the piece along with a tasty butter. The crust was nice and the wheat was a pleasant taste in the body.
An oyster from Normandy was plated with cut asparagus, caviar and cashew nuts. The asparagus were wonderful and the oyster was properly plump, briny and salty but the genius in this dish was the nuts. They added a great texture and taste to the dish.
The broth for the next dish was brought out first which had been part of the poaching process for the duck foie gras. The foie gras was poached in chicken broth with ginger and lemon gras. It gave it a very nice flavor and as the foie gras was barely cooked there really wasn’t any strong liver taste. It was served with a steamed brioche which seemed more like a bao as it didn’t have a buttery taste. However it was great to soak up the savory broth and even though it turned the brioche gummy it was still yummy.
Pollock was plated with Morel mushroom, artichoke and a Sabayon sauce. The artichoke was really tasty and the fish very mild but both were totally enhanced by the Morel and rich sauce. This was a winning combination.
Lamb was served with a crisped skin and plated on a bed of sea beans. The fine scoring of the skin allowed it to brown nicely and much of the fat to drip off. It was amazing. The sea beans were buttery, salty and a perfect accompaniment. The tender meat was cooked to a nice rare and was quite tasty. Alongside is a lamb sweetbread in a brussels sprout leaves. It was excellent and the course outstanding.
Cheese is included in the longer tasting and 3 were presented – goat, camembert and blue – and you can have a bit of each or which ever you choose. The cheese’s tastes were too similar for me but did come plated with a nice bit of salad.
The first dessert was a coffee bean foam plated with miso and vanilla ice cream and all dusted with corn biscuit crumble. It was a strange combination with the ice cream being more on the salty side than sweet. It was okay but not overwhelming at all.
The second dessert was much better. It was pear with frozen purslane and pear ice cream dotted with chips of meringue. Standing up was a slice of dried pear. It was mild but very nice.
Extra treats were chocolates and butter cookies topped with a grapefruit marmalade. If you didn’t have enough they sent a package of 3 chewy cookies home with each couple. They were sweet and chewy.