Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > China & Southeast Asia >
Sep 30, 2008 09:56 PM

Pierre Gagnaire à Séoul to open today

The three Michelin star chef Pierre Gagnaire will open Pierre Gagnaire à Séoul today on 35th floor of Lotte Hotel, Seoul, Korea. By this, Seoul will be the fourth city in the world that has Pierre Gagnaire, following Paris, Tokyo, and Hong Kong.

Today, there will be a grand opening party for invited guests only, and dinner reservations will be received from tomorrow.

Monsieur Gagnaire will be at Pierre Gagnaire à Séoul until October 9, then he will leave for Hong Kong to prepare for his special dinner events at Pierre @ Mandarin Oriental Hotel.

For your info., it is the restaurant's policy that no photos will be allowed inside the dining room, I heard. I will be there tonight, and I will let you know what it's like.


Yet another world-famous restaurant will ally with a Korean Hotel restaurant.

Westin Chosun Hotel in Seoul, Korea, used to have a Japanese restaurant on its basement floor, called "Sushi Cho". The restaurant was relocated to top floor of the hotel, went through a major face lift for several months, and will reopen either at the end of October or early November.

With its reopening, Sushi Cho will ally with Kyuubei, the world famous sushi restaurant at Ginza, Tokyo.

It sounds similar to S. Qube in Hong Kong, but unlike S. Qube, whose main chef previously had nothing to do with Kyuubei, Sushi Cho's sushi chef will be dispatched directly from Kyuubei and the restaurant's Korean staff has been trained at Kyuubei for the past few months.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Well, here is the review.
    Yesterday, I went to the opening party of Pierre Gagnaire à Séoul.
    The French ambassador to Korea, vice chairman Shin (who is also the daughter of Lotte Group's chairman), president & CEO of Lotte Hotel, general manager of Lotte Hotel, president & CEO of Pierre Gagnaire à Tokyo, and of course, monsieur Pierre Gagnaire, were at the party.

    The interior reflected the concept of Secret Garden at Versailles Palace, yet it was very modern. I was told that they spent approximately USD50,000 per each chandelier in the dining rooms. urrrrr...

    Its kitchen, so far the largest in Korea for any restaurant, was as wide as that of Peninsula Hotel, Hong Kong. One side of the kitchen had full city views too!

    The food...
    I don't know whether monsieur Gagnaire decided to go with rather ordinary but popular cuisine that night because most participants were rather advanced in age (me and my companion were the youngest persons that night), but the foods were not exactly eye-striking. Rather, they were firm, steady, and traditional. Of course, there were some elements of P.G. style though.
    It was a 10 course dinner. I don't think it is wise to judge the restaurant by dining there only once, especially on its first day of operation, but purely based on my first experience at this new restaurant, I think the foods at Pierre Hong Kong or Pierre Gagnaire à Tokyo are slightly more inspiring to me.

    The restaurant will be open to public from today's lunch.
    The prices for a la carte will be 100,000 Won - 150,000 Won, while course menus will be 120,000 Won - 200,000 Won for Lunch, and 220,000 Won - 300,000 Won for dinner.

    Since I promised I would not publish any photos of its food or interiors, I can not post them, but there are few photos about this restaurant here:

    5 Replies
    1. re: kosmose7

      Thanks for the update, kosmose7 - one additional (and very welcome) dining destination the next time we visit Seoul.

      Is there any reason why you can't share photos of the food? It only makes us more curious about Pierre Seoul!

      BTW, here are some food pics I took at Pierre's HK outlet earlier this year.

      1. re: klyeoh

        "Is there any reason why you can't share photos of the food? It only makes us more curious about Pierre Seoul!"

        Possibly an answer within a question?

        1. re: Curt the Soi Hound

          Good one, Curt! I didn't even realised what I said till you pointed it out.

          But really, there's been a rise in the number of restaurants which didn't permit their clientele to take pictures of the dishes laid down in front of them. Most chefs move between restaurants anyway, so there should be no question of having food presentations being copyrighted.

          Anyway, the advent of camera-toting food bloggers must have annoyed some restaurateurs. I used to remember back in the 1990s when I ate at Michelin-starred restaurants like Alain Ducasse, Paul Bocuse, etc, and didn't have a single photo taken for keepsake. Can't imagine that happening these days.

          1. re: klyeoh

            IMHO, many famous chefs are becoming like rock stars, holding most of their audience in contempt, and trying to squeeze more and more profit out of their fame.
            It wouldn't surprise me if some magazines might pay for photo exclusives, or we may someday have to pay for photographs!

        2. re: klyeoh

          Hello klyeoh!
          I think the reason why they prohibit the photo taking is probably what you have already mentioned. The manager told me that they want to keep their restaurant 'mysterious' so that people have to personally visit there. I heard that's the way chef Gagnaire wants.

          Thank very much for your kind photo sharing of Pierre,
          Here are also some photos of Pierre Hong Kong I took before.
          Some photos were taken in fall, 2006 when Pierre had just opened, while others were taken in June this year: