l'atelier du robuchon - counter or table seating?
I have reservations at l'atelier du robuchon but was wondering is the counter or table seating better? my bf is a chef and I know he likes to see what's going on in the kitchen, but is there much to see from the counter? if not, then i think table might be better - more quiet / more romantic? which one should i go with!?!? help!
This may be too late, but I would definitely do the counter. We were there this past weekend and got a great view. I would order small plates as opposed to the tasting menu. Then you can order exactly what you would like. We had eight small plates and found it to be just enough food. Everything was excellent -- off the top of my head, I believe we had the fried langostine, foie gras and eel (my favorite), sweetbreads, quail stuffed with foie gras (perhaps my second favorite) and truffled mashed potatoes (big shavings of truffles over such creamy decadent mashed potatoes), scallops in seaweed butter, lobster. I can't remember the names of the other two courses. We then had a cheese plate and shared the cherries and almond souffle dessert. Probably my least favorite course was the dessert, but it was still very good.
Honestly I was a bit surprised that I enjoyed it as much as I did. I've read some reports about it being all flash and no substance. They paid a lot of attention to detail. Plating was exquisite. The service was very good -- maybe a bit fawning. If you sit at the counter, I think the wait staff can get a bit chatty (which is fine). The bread basket was great as well -- they had a mini baguette, an olive-oil soaked focaccia and another crusty round dinner roll. Not a cheap dinner (I think the couple next to us were on their fist date!!!), but well worth it.
We sat at the counter and we mezmerized! You get a good peek at the Chef's although the Exec Chef is pretty far back and the Garde Mange is up front. The service at the counter is amazing if not a little awkward because they have to reach over a high counter, not bad at all though.
Tables look very comfortable but look more for an intense conversation or romantic encounter to enjoy the tables.
Food is mostly amazing, mostly because some of the combinations are edgy but overall a "foodie" heaven! Enjoy