It’s been 3 years since we were at Guy Savoy, a large 3 star Michelin restaurant. Not much had changed in the physical structure but the feel was definitely of a tourist driven machine. We were in a room with mostly non-French speaking people and it was unsettling to hear the same “witty” remarks delivered to each table, like they were something new and personal. Nevertheless service is well done with no need is too much to ask for. The lunch special is not as good a deal now. You are limited in your choices with it and the various lunch compilations did not appeal either, so we ordered from the regular menu. Interesting enough the menu is printed in about 6 languages. Chef Guy Savoy is still in house and makes the rounds of the tables but leaves early enough that I seriously doubt he was doing any cooking – he is there just to be seen. If you need to see him then I urge you to go but even though the food is really good you can eat better at a better price any number of other places.
Even before a decision is made on your order they brought around a skewer of foie gras and toast. The toast was pretty dry and the foie gras not particularly well flavored. There was also a cracker but I couldn’t understand what they said was on it and the taste didn’t give it away either.
Bread service is with a dark course bread, that has been their usual but I found it too dry, crumbly and tough this time and asked for something else. They brought a selection of chibbotta and baguette slices which were adequate. An amuse bouche of Chestnut cream with chestnut broth was mild yet very tasty.
The Coquilles Saint-Jacques é l’algue en demi were scallops and artichokes. It was a scallop tartar with citrus alongside a dish with roasted foie gras on artichoke pureé with cooked scallops and seaweed in a scallop sauce. The sauce was really good and nicely rich, but it all could have benefitted from a pinch of salt. Otherwise it was fine.
The waiter brought a complimentary extra course of Saumon figé, which was salmon ‘frozen’ on ice, hot consommé and lemon ‘pearls.’ A filet of salmon was marinated in olive oil and ‘cooked’ on ice with lemon pearls at the table and then served on a skewer. With it was more salmon in a hot lemongrass scented consommé with bak choi and chervil jelly cubes. It was a lot of show. The salmon was laid on an ice package to “cook” – one minute to a side and served with finger limes (which added a nice pop). In a hot bowl with the aromatics and vegetable boullion another cold portion was added to it so you could experience the hot and cold sensation at the same time. It was okay, but then I’m not a salmon lover and this had a slightly strong taste, but my husband thought it was fine.
Crustacés et chanterelles d’automne en demi was light shellfish with chanterelles and lentil cream. The langoustine, lobster pieces and mushrooms were in a shellfish sauce. All were cooked perfectly in a classic dish. Even the mushrooms were well flavored in this excellent dish.
We ordered the Poulette farcie en demi-robe which was a stuffed free range hen with confit salsify, young turnips, mushrooms and chicken livers, roasted in a salt dough, poultry jus with a sabayon of vin jaune – available only for 2 people. The whole bird was presented first on a tray of crispy salsify strips. The white portion had a wonderful white sabayon sauce which they left the extra of at the table and the dark meat had a chicken jus, which was also left at the table. A medley of vegetables accompanied the plate presentation. After a bit they took the plates and brought a second helping of the same with additional sauces. The chicken had a nice intense flavor that was well accented by the sauces. It was quite good but it should have been for over 200 euros. They served it with a separate bowl of the crisp salsify which added a nice textural bit and fun to eat feature to the course.
The transition to dessert was with a pumpkin and pear combination. It was dotted with pumpkin seeds and nicely sweet and fruity. Very good and a perfect transition.
The ‘Open’ mille-feuille with Tahitian vanilla was three sheets of crisp puff pastry layered with a light Tahitian vanilla cream. The pastry was suitably buttery and flakey and the cream good but it didn’t come off as outstanding, which I expected it would.
The dessert trolley used to be included in your lunch but now they charge for it. It has way less options than the first or second time we ate with them. It does have 2 types of rice pudding, creme caramel, sorbets, cookies, etc. The caramel ice cream was nice but really melty. The lemon cookies were small and crisp. The cocoa marshmallows were weird. A cherry clafoutis with almonds was quite good. It was an okay sweet ending but I would never have it again at lunch.