With truffle season well and truly underway, we headed along to Les 110 de Taillevent where chef Raphael Grima put together a delicious menu for us, showcasing the delicacy in all its glory.
Given its pedigree you’d be forgiven for feeling a little intimidated by 110. After all it’s part of the Taillevent Paris, the Gardinier family-owned group behind the iconic two-Michelin starred Le Taillevent. It is also home to 110 wines by the glass, some of which are proudly displayed behind the bar as you enter the beautiful dining room. However, despite the apparent grandeur, you’ll find the warmest of welcomes in an elegant but unpretentious setting. You see, 110 have made wine and food pairing oh-so-simple with a very clever fold out menu, that gives you an option of 4 wines, of varying price points, for each and every dish. How clever is that? So whether you’re trying to impress the in-laws or need somewhere suitable for that all important work lunch – this most definitely fits the bill.
What is even more exciting is that each glass arrives with a little cardboard disk around the base which reminds you what you’re drinking. You’re encouraged to take these away with you, and lo and behold, here I am able to write about everything I drank, a whole week later. Hurrah!
The à la carte menu is indulgently French, slightly reinterpreted for a British palette.
We discussed the menu concept while scoffing posh truffle cheese toasties and mushroom soup shots with a glass (or two) of Laurent Perrier.
Creamy scrambled eggs topped with generous shavings of truffle was to be our first course. Forget lazy Sunday mornings – this is a whole new take on brinner and one we doubt we could rustle up at home quite so successfully. The texture is an acquired taste that might not be to everyone’s liking. A soft and smooth Chardonnay from the USA was as expected, the perfect pairing.
A beautiful piece of John Dory arrived for our fish course. Floating in a creamy lobster bisque, it gave us a brief pause from all the truffle. Rich but beautifully balanced.
Veal rump was served pink and topped with yet more truffles, we loved the stuffed baby artichoke it was served with – perhaps our favourite bite of the whole meal. We didn’t expect to find mac n cheese on the menu but rest assured it had been given the French once over with the addition of mushrooms and Emmental. Even if you’re so full you think you might burst right out of your dress, you MUST be sure to try the mash potato.
Desserts are STRONG here – not wanting to experience FOMO, we tried them all. In the name of research of course. The chestnut ice cream was particularly memorable, made even more so with a glass of Moscato d’Asti, a sparkling dessert wine from Italy. The spherical chocolate creation looked like a true work of art, but don’t let that put you off tucking in.
If you fancy working your way through a selection of exciting and unusual wine, we can think of no better place to do it.