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l'Obelisque on a Sunday


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I always try to make it to l'Obelisque when in Paris. I had made reservations for my travel guest to join me yesterday. I must say we had a very special afternoon at the Crillon..the friendliness, service could not have been better..

Sunday afternoon - Just got back from our lunch from l'Obelisque (Crillon). We had the best reception - great service. Started with flutes of champagne (what else but Taittinger!) I started with a risotto aux girolles et roquette (the risotto was served over a puree of rocquette (arugula) topped with the sauteed girolles with the right touch of garlic. I mentioned how I was so looking forward to having girolles as we get chanterelles in SF but not girolles. A few minutes later, a mini-cocottes came and our server announced that a little birdie told them that we don't get the genuine girolles in San Francisco so an extra serving has arrived for me. Joan had a creamy soupe de volaille avec crevettes, coriande et gingembre.

In honor of the season of chasse, we both had the Lapin de Garenne en civet a la Frrancaise, puree de celeri. It was rich! What a wonderful game dish. Service was superbe - wine is poured when needed - even our water glasses seemed to be always full - those house made rolls looked so good but I did not touch any because I did not want to fill up on carbs.

Lovely millefeuille a la vanille "Bourbon" was a thousand layers of flaky pastry that is one of Crillon's specialty - served with just a touch of coulis de framboise. Les petits pots de creme en vanille, cafe et chocolat servi avec langue-de-chat. A little plate of mignardise (petits macarons de chocolat et de chocolats framboise) rounded up the coffee service. When we ate the little mignardise, another plate showed up. It's not as if we look like we're starving, au contraire.

We were asked when we're leaving for the States and when we told him the 15th, he ssaid he hoped for us to be back and dine with them before our return home. What a fine Sunday it turned out to be. We visited a little Marche de Noel de Crillon before we went out to the cold air at the Place de la Concorde.

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Voila le dernier repas (The Last Supper!)!!!! Does this call for a big cry????

We had such a great time last week at l'Obelisque that we cancelled our lunch at Drouant to have our last in the Crillon. Joan has sent an e-mail to the hotel telling them what great service we had the last time so we were welcomed with open arms upon arrival. We were seated at the same table.

Quelle surprise! We ordered champagne for our aperitif and when it came, we were told that they are compliments of the Crillon!! Taittinger, they were!!!!!!

Mme. J started with Huitres de chez Gillsrdeau - the fattest oysters and most delicious ones you'd find. It is even fatter than the ones served at Les Fables de la Fontaine. Mme. L had her last Foie Gras de canard de Landes (she just have to have them) sprinkled with some poivre noir et sel de Guerande.

For the plat principal, Mme. J has a Homard en salade, mangue, coeur de iceberg, vinaigrette curry (her favorite thing to order in this place). A glass of 2007 Alsace Riesling Cuvee Albert accompanied the lobster. Mme. L had a Gigot d'agneau en tranche (bien rose), haricot coco piments. A glass of 2000 Pessac Leognan, Chateau Olivier was a good dmatch with the lamb.

Charlotte Poire/Caramel for Mme. J and Millefeuille a la Vanille <Bourbon> for Mme. L and coffee after finished off the meal, accompanied by a plate of mignardise - mini macarons au caramel de beuerre salee et des quelques chocolats.

An old man across the room and directly facing Lilia, thought that the two ladies across the room was watching him. He told our waiter that he thought we had our eye on him (the waiter said "he wished!!!"). It turned out that he's been lunching there for over 20 years, he is 94 years old and has been a widower for 15-----. When he stood up, waved to us goodbye,he really looked 94........ Joan will have a date with him when she gioes back in the Spring. That would be a lot of fun to see what he can do when they converse with Joan's less that passable french!!!!

That's all for now.............

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  • 2 weeks later...

A little update re the oyster that I had at l'Obelisque on Dec. 14th.

We had been to Les Fables de la Fontaine a few night before when I enjoyed their Cancale oysters. I couldn't believe the oysters at l'Obelisque..magnifique! I did a bit of research on them. I was not familiar with the name: Gillardeau..here is what I found:

Gillardeau oysters are produced by the Gillardeau family and their small private company. It was founded in 1898 in Bourcefranc-le-Chapus near La Rochelle and the Île d’Oléron in western France.

"A French Family Dynasty Reinvents the Oyster", New York Times (October 26, 2008). Retrieved on 27 October 2008. "The family’s small private company, founded 110 years ago here by the sea near La Rochelle and the Île d’Oléron in western France, produces only “spéciales,” oysters that are fleshier and, consequently, more expensive than the standard

Here is a recipe from the Michelin 3 star restaurant Troisgros with the Gillardeau oysters:

Troisgros Warm Oysters wrapped in Sorrel with Almonds - The wonderfully firm Gillardeau oysters is what makes this dish. They even stay firm after being warmed slightly. They are wrapped in sorrel leaves that become a bit wilted from being heated, and then topped with a sliced almond. Add contrasts of sour lemons and a crunchy nuttiness, some butter and then lemon, and you have a textbook example of the Cuisine Acidulee which occupies so much of Michel Troisgros's interest.



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