The Jane opened in 2014 in the former chapel of an old military hospital complex. The building is well restored and already has 2 Michelin stars, however they did have a fire a few months ago and much of the kitchen had to be replaced. It is a large dining room with one end being the open kitchen. The balcony above is a bar and it gives a visitor a spectacular view of the room below as well as many seats at the bar to lounge and get ready for the meal. It also serves an a la carte menu of bites to be shared. The coved ceiling of the building has been restored to look old with a distressed paint treatment. Stained glass windows have whimsical designs in them. New age music plays in the background of the large white cloth covered tables which are closely spaced. Bench seating with lots of pillows is along some of the walls and the middle tables are outfitted with 4 chairs, but some are worked into built in partitions. A huge overhead light fixture as well as a sculpture over the kitchen are centerpieces of the stylish design.
A glassed in service/wine area is in the middle of the end of the room opposite the kitchen. The bathrooms are downstairs but there is an elevator. There are also patios available for waiting or drinking but it was raining the day we were there so they were not in use. The entire dining room receives the same tasting menu but a few supplements are offered it you wanted. One was cheese and the other was a lobster with caviar. We chose to add the latter. Wine pairings are offered but we ordered our own bottles. Service was friendly with good English but pacing was slow. Portion control was good. The chef came out to great a few friends but left to go to his newer place and never made it around the room. There are no amuse bouche or mignardises.
The menu started with a dish commemorating their recent fire called “we got burnt.” It contained burnt sea bass that had been marinated in a Japanese style and then cured with burnt onion powder. It also included fresh, acidic gel from barbecued onions and lemons, dashi toasted Kombu with smoked bonita and toasted hay, oil of burnt onions and smoked creme fraiche pearls. It was okay.
The second course came in 2 bowls – one with blue fin tuna and scrambled eggs and the other with sea urchin spaghetti. The tuna was really good and had subtle hints of wasabi in the dish. The nicely al dente housemade spaghetti was chilled in herbal tea and mixed with Icelandic sea urchin. The pearls of roe in the middle had a nice pop to add to the texture of the dish.
House made bread was both white and brown slices. Both were tasty with a good crust although it was not overly crisp on the edge. The inside was moist.
Carabinero, quinoa, carrot, oil of vadouvan, cumin and herbs was presented in 2 ways. One was a set of Cardinal prawns that were painted with carabinero sauce and then torched tableside. They were barely cooked. The other dish was raw chunks of prawn mixed with quinoa, carrot and herbs. It was very good.
Goose foie gras was plated with rhubarb, hazelnut and nanko-hoshiko. The ring of smooth foie gras was nicely paired with the crisp meringue discs. The ball was filled with a creamy substance that went well with the tasty toasted hazelnuts.
White asparagus were plated with smoked eel and garden peas. The “White Gold” asparagus are grown in Belgium from April to June on an organic farm. The peas were from Holland and the smoked eel from Italy. The asparagus was quite al dente and the eel very ham like. A few fresh peas were on the plate as well as pea purée which was richer and tasted like it was made with butter. Also a cream of verbena was on the plate and all went very well with the fine asparagus.
Perle blanche (type of oyster) from Bourcefranc-le-Chapus (southwestern France) was plated with plankton and kaffir. The large oyster was in a juice made from mussels and cockles. There was a hint of spice to the dish. The oyster was not overly briny and all the components went well together.
A signature dish was European lobster plated with royal Belgian caviar, smoked beetroot and dashi butter sauce (this was a supplemental dish). The lobster was cooked perfectly and the caviar was excellent. They left the extra sauce on the table which is always a nice gesture. You could see why this dish was a specialty of the chef – it was great.
White pollack from Holland was topped with grey north sea shrimp and surrounded by a vin jaunes (from château-chalon) sauce and finally topped with a crisp round of chicken skin. Also on the plate was a bit of butternut squash. It was nice.
The whole pigeon was presented the course prior to the pollack and then taken to be plated while you ate the fish. The pigeon from Steenvoode had been dry aged for 10 days while filled with herbs and spices. It was barbecued with cassis and served with a sauce made from the bones and some berries. The whole pigeon was cut in pieces with some parts still quite rare. It was all very smokey tasting with a bit of spiciness. There were also pieces of onion on the plate that were filled with berries. They left the extra bone sauce as well as berry sauce on the table.
The pre-dessert course was kaffir ice cream, vinegar of basil oil, mandarin, sea buckthorn, shiso and nitrogen ‘stuff’ (made from the zest of mandarin). Some of the dots were cookie dough and others were shiso. This one had lots of tastes and textures. It was light, refreshing and a good palate cleanser.
Parsnip, malt and guanaja composed the final dessert. It was 2 bowls. The larger one had parsnip and vanilla, dark chocolate cream and apple syrup topped with meringue. The flavors here were stronger but everything blended well for a nice amount of sweetness. The smaller bowl had parsnip caramelized with dark beer and had lots of smooth textures and was cool and nice surrounded by a foam.