A new eatery has opened in the Press Club Building featuring a menu by two-star Michelin chef Alain Dutournier. With over 40 years of experience in the French culinary world, Chef Dutournier has branched out of France for the first time with La Table Du Chef, looking to bring his brand of haute French cuisine to Hanoi.
The concept honours artistic minds who express themselves with their handiwork. “We want to reveal the value of the human hand,” says F&B director Dang Thanh Tung. La Table Du Chef’s vision of the hand as a “printer for the creative mind” is evident in the restaurant’s attention to personal touches.
The city’s upper crust have been hosted in the various F&B outlets in this central location for almost two decades, from its beginnings as a meeting point for journalists to exchange news and relax after long days of correspondence. Small details dotted about La Table Du Chef pay homage to this history, with plates adorned by typography, tables engraved with quotes by writers of old, and Hermes wallpaper that evokes the feeling of an old study. Other subtle details are embedded into the interior, giving guests the opportunity to look closer and hunt for traces left by the human hand.
Luscious wood glints in the French colonial building’s soft light. A tasteful collection of contemporary Vietnamese paintings adorns the walls. Together they make the decor’s warm tones comforting and sexy all at once, setting the scene for a fancy business lunch or a romantic date. The 70-seat continental restaurant is also fitted with two private rooms to host special dinners.
Though prices here are top end, La Table Du Chef has recently rolled out an affordable option in the form of their new Temptation menu, a set meal of starter, main and dessert at VND520,000++. Combined with a wine cellar that boasts over 450 varieties of red and white, you’ve got a recipe for class.
We started with the smoked salmon, stuffed with a light, crunchy egg salad, topped with delicate fish roe and a side of bright yellow and green lemon bubbles that lend a tartness to the rich salmon dish. These bubbles are created by mixing lemon with flour, and dropping the concoction into cold water, where they consolidate into soft little spheres of flavour. A small green salad topped with edible purple pansies adds a dainty touch.
A la Rossini
For the main, we had the beef tenderloin, served in a Rossini style, named in honour of the famous Italian composer. The juicy cut of meat is nestled between a buttery slice of pan-fried foie gras from Landes, garnished with slices of black truffle from Perigord, and a celery confit topped with broccoli semolina. A decadent truffle coulis ties the dish together.
Rounding out the meal, we finished with a light dessert that was nothing short of a work of art. White chocolate parfait forms the base for layers of crispy sweet wafer and fresh Dalat strawberries, carefully placed in a manner that can only be described as statuesque. A sweet red emulsion is drizzled artfully across the plate. The top of this confection tower holds a fragile dome of glass-like bubbles to complete the aesthetics of the dish. It the kind of beautiful dessert that almost makes you feel bad to sink a spoon into.
Open daily for lunch and dinner, La Table Du Chef is a place to treat yourself.
La Table Du Chef can be found on the third floor of the Press Club building, 12 Ly Dao Thanh, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi or online at facebook.com/latableduchefrestaurant