L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon in Taipei
I was told by the people at L'Atelier HK today that they are opening in Taipei this September. The guy (who is French) couldn't tell me the exact location. Would be interested to see if anyone on the board knows about this.
Taipei will finally get a decent Western restaurant!
Saw this article on NY Times (Mar 17 2009):
YOSUKE SUGA, who has been the executive chef at L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in New York since it opened, will move on to the Taipei branch of the restaurant on April 10 and will be replaced by Xavier Boyer, who has been at the London branch.
Bella Vita is now operational, although news report suggest that L'Atelier would be open around mid- to late Oct. A source of mine attribute the delay to the difficulty of getting the right kitchen equipment manufactured in France due to a strike. Let's hope this opening isn't delayed any further!
There's never been a meal at L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon which I do not enjoy (Paris, London, Tokyo, New York, Hong Kong) and my first experience at its Taipei incarnation was no exception! Service was fabulous (though a bit reminiscent of its Tokyo counterpart's almost neurotic emphasis on tight discipline) & the food was absolutely "Robuchon" :-)
Complimentary bread basket was a delight - tiny, light croissant puffs, bacon-flavored bread, rolls.
Amuse geule 1 - foie gras emulsion with parmesan foam (a bit passe but good nonetheless);
Amuse geule 2 - asparagus mousse with consomme jelly (don't think my wait-staff told me what consomme it was)
Appetiser: L'Oeuf - soft-boiled egg with eggplant-tomato stew;
Soup: Le Petit Pois - green pea soup with ricotta cheese & mint leaf;
Main: Le Veau - Red-wine braised veal cheeks with cumin-scented carrot fondant, and a small pot of absolutely decadent pommes puree (well, Robuchon has never intended it to be "healthy", so his pommes puree was perhaps 30% potato - the rest was cream & butter!!). Somehow, the only chink in my meal this evening was the pommes puree - it tasted gummy/gluey. But I was having too good a time to complain.
Dessert: Ile Flottante - classic! Taste-wise, so-so. Guess Robuchon's got some way to go on the dessert area.
Love the whole set-up - it's longish counter is similar to the one in Roppongi Hills, Tokyo.
L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon
No 28, Song Ren Road
Tel: 886-2-8729 2628
Open daily: 11.30am-2.30pm (Lunch), 6.00pm-10.30pm (Dinner)