L’Arpege located south of the Seine and right next to the Musee Rodin. The restaurant is a very traditional and classic French restaurant. Chef Alain Passard is the creative genius behind this superb restaurant. Here are L’Arpege’s awards:
- 3 Michelin star in 2014
- 3 Michelin star in 2015
- #25 on the San Pellegrino 2014 World’s Best Restaurants
- #12 on the San Pellegrino 2015 World’s Best Restaurants
- #19 on the San Pellegrino 2016 World’s Best Restaurants
It’s an organic veggie-eccentric restaurant and the ingredients are locally sourced from Chef Passard’s own garden. I was sitting there wondering what the f*ck was I doing here. I like to stick to a strict Paleo diet cause I’m a big cross-fitter. Why cause that’s what cave-man eat back then? I don’t care if they only lived until they were 35 years old. Who cares if I suffer from Naturalistic Fallacy?
Chef Passard’s kitchen had a number of graduates who went off and opened their own restaurants like Chef Pascal Barbot’s of Astrance and young chef Bertrand Grébaut of Septime. The service was spectacular and Chef Passard greeted us right when we sat down. The man spoke perfect English, very welcoming, charming, and down to earth person. He hung out and talked to us for a good 15 minutes. I was expecting a snooty French attitude but they actually didn’t mind us being American. They didn’t bark at our attire and yell “That is not Le Fashion!” in their berets as they sip on their French wine, munch on their French Bread and smoke on their le cigarette.
Now, the food. French people are known to be food snobs and I will be the first to debunk that myth. However, that shit is completely true. The country known for their wine, cheese, bread, and the elevated status of French cuisine. I would have tucked my head into the ground each time the waiter came by like an ostrich but as a proud American I would not fold and insisted our McDonald’s is far more superior than any French restaurant.
Anyway, the dishes will blow your mind from beginning to the end. The health conscious organic vegans would go crazy for the menu but meat eating Paleo douche bags like myself snark at these items. I need food to fuel my burpees, kettle bell reps,HIIT and circuit training. Shit. We cross-fitters invented those workouts cause we’re the best at exercise. My absolute favorites dishes:
- Beets Nigiri – The organic beets is laid on top of rice like a traditional sushi nigiri. It was simply amazing how good it was for not being a slab of meat. The texture of the dish rivals some of the best sushi I’ve eaten in my life like how cross-fit rivals any professional sport. The nigiri was buttery and melts in your mouth perfectly. The sweetness of the beets without the earthy dirt flavor was excellent like more reps over good form work outs. The perfect earthy taste like when I’m brought down to earth due to an injury while doing cross-fit with bad form.
- Egg – The poached egg served with cauliflower and a foam. The texture of the egg was silky and the cauliflower give the dish a crunch like my spine when I dead lift with the wrong form. The egg white was slightly cooked which made it like a sauce for the dish. The dish had me trying to get every last drop of it like how I brag about how many reps I did in so many minutes.
- Beet Root Tartare – Yes, the Beet Root Tartare. It was easily one of the best dishes of the tasting menu. It tasted juicy and tender like my muscles after I tore it from doing kettle-bell swings. It had the same flavors and textures of a beef tartare but it was completely made of veggies. The creative ways to cook and make something taste completely different totally blew my mind like finding out French women do shave. What? No way.
Overall, Chef Alain Passard and L’Arpege was a great dining experience. From the service to the courses, it was one of the best dining experiences in my life. I don’t say that lightly like how many boxes I’ve worked out at. It takes one really amazing restaurant to completely change your palate and redefined my meaning of a dining experience like how Cross-fit made this little fat kid who got picked last in Physical Education feel like an athlete. Yes, French women do shave.
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- Service - 9.5/109.5/10
- Presentation - 9.5/109.5/10
- Flavors - 9.5/109.5/10
- Decor - 9/109/10
- Ambiance - 9/109/10
L’Arpege changed my palate like how Cross-fit made me feel like an athlete. The vegetable menu had me reconsider my Paleo diet, but once you’re a Cross-fitter you don’t leave the cult.