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January 1, 2014updated Jan 13, 2014

Private Dining in Paris

By Andy Hayler

guy savoy_Guy Savoy is an iconic French chef, one of a select group (others were Paul Bocuse, Pierre Troisgros, and Michel Guerard) who transformed high-end French cooking in the 1970s.

These chefs rebelled against the strictures of the rich, classic French cuisine codified by Escoffier, and started cooking a lighter style of food, with natural flavors and greater emphasis on presentation. This “nouvelle cuisine” is the basis of much modern cooking.

Savoy grew up in the Savoie region of France, where his mother ran the local café. After working at the Troisgros restaurant in Roanne, Savoy opened his eponymous eatery in Paris in 1980, quickly gaining two Michelin stars.

Restaurant Guy Savoy was awarded its third Michelin star in 2002, an accolade that it has retained ever since.

If you want to try several dishes, then of course opt for a tasting menu, but an undocumented feature of the menu is that the restaurant is happy to serve half portions, allowing you to choose your own path through the meal.

A signature dish is artichoke soup with black truffle and parmesan, served with brioche stuffed with wild mushrooms and covered with truffle butter; it has great depth of flavor, and the bread served with it is stunning.

A common flaw of many aspiring chefs is a tendency to overcomplicate dishes, but the confidence in the cooking here can be seen in a simple but perfectly executed risotto, elevated above its humble roots by a grating of white truffles from Alba (entrées from about $84 to about $171).

Service is as good as expected, but manages to avoid the excessive formality sometimes found in Parisian eateries. In addition to the main dining room, there is a private dining room that can seat up to 16 guests (private dining prix fixe menus from about $197 to about $434). For a larger party, the main dining room can be hired en bloc, seating up to 80 people.


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