Have you ever watched Chef’s Table or the more recent Chef’s Table France on Netflix? Well, then you may very well recognize the chef to the right of this photo:
That’s right, while on an epic pastry tour in Paris, Babette and I were more than fortunate enough to get a reservation one day during lunch hours at Yam’tcha, Adeline Grattard’s Michelin starred restaurant. And from start to finish, it was one of the most beautiful lunch experiences of my life.
If you read my last michelin restaurant related post, I have some criteria that I will tell you about before getting into all the pictures and specifics of what we ate–so feel free to keep scrolling til you get to that, or keep reading as you like.
Ambiance: 4.5/5 It was a lovely and comfortable space, with beautiful walls, decorations and seating. However it was still within the bounds of an ‘expected’ level of comfort for me, which is why I didn’t give it the full marks.
Taste: 5/5 Constantly amazed and unexpectedly the best dessert I have ever eaten.
Volume/balance/pace: 4.5/5 The volume was perfect, and the only slight hiccup for me was that occasionally Babette and I felt like we had to rush through our tea in order to consume every drop and move on to the next one–but that was not related to the volume of the food and was also probably because we spent so long taking pictures and talking 😛
Chef interaction and involvement: 5/5 The entire time we were eating we could see Chef Grattard working with and leading the rest of her team in the open kitchen. It was truly inspirational to watch such a strong female role model at work.
Service: 4/5 Everyone was incredibly nice to us, though we did say we were comfortable speaking French, and occasionally had issues understanding the complexity of what we were eating. One of the servers even spoke German, and tried to explain things in German to Babette! Over all though, there were one or two people who were a bit more reserved and standoffish than the rest, which made us feel like they could have been as friendly as the rest.
Uniqueness and Creativity: 5/5 Have you ever seen a tea pairing with a michelin level gastronomic French fusion meal? I didn’t think so.
Overall Satisfaction: 5/5 I would recommend Yam’tcha and the Yam’tcha boutique to anyone visiting Paris, and would be delighted at the chance to go back a second time.
Now that you have some of my overall thoughts in mind, here is a little outline of what we enjoyed for our meal. As you may have read–there were a few translation issues, leaving Babette and I to make some educated guesses 😛
Amuse bouche: Refort Creme with legume egg roll “crustiant” paired with a welcome tea from Taiwan, which tasted a bit like silver needle to me.
Melange of mushrooms cooked and fresh with purée fois gras, chestnut shavings and foam –> tea from Yunan China, earthy and like the tea from the day before–black and like Chinese medicine
Seared scallops over spinach with garlic and soy sauce, citrus foam, citrus caviar and yellow zucchini –> oolong tea from China, tasted like oolong but smelled like Jasmine
White fish with Szechwan eggplant, langoustine sauce, crispy pork shavings –> oolong tea from Taiwan with scents of vanilla and butter
Glass noodles with cumin and clam broth -perfect amount of spice and surprising as a dish mid way through the meal like this, very good
Filet mignon with a sauce made from a reduction of Chinese alcohol and a vegetable similar to asparagus –> black tea from China, very grassy taste but matched perfectly with the dish -the flavor of the sauce and the vegetable was amazing (we nearly licked the plates, but managed to restrain ourselves)
Ginger sorbet, biscuit sponge, black sesame tuille, ginger gelatin foam, fresh apple shreds, yuzu slices, cooked apple pieces, toasted and Caramelized sesame seeds, pineapple sauce with shizo cream –> chocolate scented red tea
To end our meal, we were given moist warm towels to wash our hands with and refresh
Mignardise: coconut marshmallow (very light but still with a firm texture, barely sweet and perfectly so) hazelnut caramel choux (perfectly creamy and with a bit of crunch) chocolate square with peanuts (again not very sweet and with just enough peanut to add some smokiness but not overwhelming)
Babette and I had the most amazing time, and somehow walked away from this all still having the motivation to explore Paris (instead of needing to roll back to our hotel as I was worried we might have to due to all the delicious food haha!)
Thanks for reading about this food adventure! Stay tuned for my extreme back-log of posts from Europe, and also my move to Miami Florida which will be taking place next week!!