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John Talbott

New York-Paris Equivalent Restaurants

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On another topic, ewindels wrote

I'm visiting the city of Lights 12/26 - 30 with a couple, four lunches and dinners, we each get to pick one of each. One of their insistances is L'ami Louis, which from what I'm reading (both here and on other venues) is going to be old, heavy, dusty food drowned in demi glace. (For reference, one of their faves here in New York is Le Veau D'or, if you've ever even heard of it). As a counterfoil to this, I would love recommendation from gulleters acquainted with both New York and Paris to go someplace analagous to NYC's Cookshop, or Market Table: hearty-ish, but with a focus on the ingredients, not masking them or drowning them in sauces and gunk. Any thoughts or suggestions? I've been reading and reading, but my head is now spinning.

It occurred to me that many of our members are heavily involved in both New York and Paris cuisine and it might be fun to look at equivalent restaurants, if any.

For instance are these equivalent:

Le Veau D’Or = or ≠ l’Ami Louis, Taillevent, Laperouse, Tour d'Argent + Laurent ?

Cookshop + Market Table = or ≠ Les Racines + Breizh Café?

Danny Meyer’s Empire = or ≠ those of Robuchon, Ducasse or Savoy?

Etc.

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On another topic, ewindels wrote
I'm visiting the city of Lights 12/26 - 30 with a couple, four lunches and dinners, we each get to pick one of each. One of their insistances is L'ami Louis, which from what I'm reading (both here and on other venues) is going to be old, heavy, dusty food drowned in demi glace. (For reference, one of their faves here in New York is Le Veau D'or, if you've ever even heard of it). As a counterfoil to this, I would love recommendation from gulleters acquainted with both New York and Paris to go someplace analagous to NYC's Cookshop, or Market Table: hearty-ish, but with a focus on the ingredients, not masking them or drowning them in sauces and gunk. Any thoughts or suggestions? I've been reading and reading, but my head is now spinning.

It occurred to me that many of our members are heavily involved in both New York and Paris cuisine and it might be fun to look at equivalent restaurants, if any.

For instance are these equivalent:

Le Veau D’Or = or ≠ l’Ami Louis, Taillevent, Laperouse, Tour d'Argent + Laurent ?

Cookshop + Market Table = or ≠ Les Racines + Breizh Café?

Danny Meyer’s Empire = or ≠ those of Robuchon, Ducasse or Savoy?

Etc.

Le Cirque and Taillevent. Two restaurants known as much for the owner as for the food. Jean Georges empire vs Ducasse.

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In terms of direct inspiration, Gramercy Tavern was specifically modeled as an American version of Taillevent. Of course there are lots of restaurants in the world that take inspiration from Taillevent, but it's no small thing that Jean-Claude Vrinat chose, in 1996, to celebrate Taillevent's 50th Anniversary at Gramercy Tavern.

Jean Georges has a lot of commonalities with Arpege.

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Jean Georges has a lot of commonalities with Arpege.

Would you mind elaborating further? What are those commonalities?

Thanks

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I get the sense that Vongerichten took a lot of inspiration from Passard when opening his signature restaurant. The minimalist decor calculated to emphasize the food; the minimalist compositions; the shades of wood; aren't there even violins at both places? I just remember walking into Jean Georges for the first time and saying "This reminds me of Arpege." Or maybe it was the other way around.

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I have seen a lot of subtle Marc Meneau influence in the food at Jean Georges with the apple confit flavored with orange, the old corn crepes with either duck or foie gras and, of course, the molten chocolate cake. this might be a case of osmosis though, with several chefs having worked at both places over the years, especially at the beginning of Jean Georges.

The obvious influence though is Louis Outhier, his mentor at L'Oasis, who brought the "exotic" touch of Asia to haute cuisine to the media forefront in the early 70's.

To me, Outhier's Spiny Lobster with Thai spices (herbs?) speaks of both of them stylistically, admirably and very well.

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