What you get when you spend US$360 on dinner

When Chad told me he’d made dinner reservations at the best restaurant in Cannes and that it had 2 Michelin stars, I was kind of excited.  Sure, it might be a little expensive, but nothing we couldn’t handle.

When we first got to Paris, I converted all the prices into American dollars and was a little horrified about spending $10 on a bottle of Evian.  Chad pointed out that most of the prices, if you ignore that they were in Euros and pretended it was dollars, weren’t that crazy.  (OK, even $7 is still expensive for a bottle of water, but it worked in most other situations!)

So really, I tried to think of it as spending 250 Euros on dinner.  Even $250 is a lot of money for dinner.  Here’s a rundown of the meal.

We had, I think, the best view in the whole restaurant.

pdo_view

Dinner started off with what they called “frivolities.”  Fried zucchini on a stick, lemon marshmallows, and delicate crackers that were sweet, salty, and spicy all at once (not pictured).

pdo_frivolities

Next was the amuse bouche,  a bite-sized appetizer.  This was a bit of cucumber with garlic foam in a fruity, peppery sauce.  It was at this point that I started to understand why the restaurant had 2 Michelin stars – in my whole life, I have never had something that had so many flavors that complemented each other so well.

pdo_amusebouche

Most of the menu involves fish, but we’re not big fish eaters.  Instead, we each ordered risotto.  I’ve never had risotto so I have no basis for comparison, but this was also delicious.

pdo_risotto

In addition to the risotto, we had each ordered a cheese assortment.  They wheeled over a giant cart filled with probably around 20 different types of cow and goat cheese.  I am a cheese wimp, so I got some soft cow cheese.  Chad is not as big of a wimp, so he asked for some the the stronger cheeses.  Because we are idiots, we forgot to take pictures of our plates, but here is a partial picture of the cart.

mtzh

We did remember to take a picture of a baguette that was flavored/colored with squid ink.  It looked cool, but had a strange fishy flavor.  Their other breads were better.

pdo_squidbread

Next was a sort of pre-dessert, which made me happier than pretty much everything else.  I am a big fan of dessert!  The picture sucks because we are bad at taking food pictures.  There were 3 different flavored shots, some nougat candies, and little bite-sized treats – a violet-flavored marshmallow (by far, the best thing I tasted all night), hazelnuts covered with white chocolate, and a rich chocolately thing, decorated with little flakes of gold.

pdo_predessert

After that was our real dessert – a flowerpot!  The outside was caramelized sugar, and inside were layers of custard and mint and chocolate sorbet.  The flower stems were made of hardened sugar, and the flower petals were thin, delicate layers of white chocolate.

pdo_dessert

After dessert was coffee and tea.  Chad ordered mint, and they wheeled over a cart of herbs, cut branches from the mint plant in front of us.  I just ordered an espresso; I was jealous.

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Finally, there were some mignardises, served in “the iron mask” (after “The Man in the Iron Mask,” who was imprisoned on one of the small islands just off the coast), with coconut pineapple lollipops, little caramels, and my favorite: orange-flavored chocolate lollipops with a bit of red pepper sprinkled on top.

P9050027

This was the first night we ordered wine to go with our dinner, and instantly realized what we’d been missing.  All of our eating and drinking took around 3.5 hours, and no one tried to shuffle us out as we leisurely finished our bottle of wine.

As we left, they handed us a small raspberry cake, “for breakfast tomorrow.” Actually, they called it a fruit cake, but luckily it was not the kind of fruit cake I initially thought of.

P9060037

Worth $360? Worth $250?  Normally, I think the answer is no.  We love to eat, but  think we enjoy comfort food more than anything.  More than that is that we aren’t and probably never will be those kind of people.  I don’t need my silverware changed after every course, and I don’t need constant attention from servers.  No matter how much money we have, I think I’ll always prefer to have it quietly and simply.

In this case, though, I think the money was worth it.  We’ll only have the one honeymoon, and it was a great experience.

After returning to the US, though, all I wanted was a hamburger!

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5 Responses

  1. This is the kind of dinner that’s good to have once in a long while: it’s almost decadent (or IS) but something to be savored. So glad you took so many food pictures!!

  2. It looks interesting (especially the risotto.. yummers!) but for $360 US?..

    *mini heart attack*

    My guess is that it’s the extra attention, cleared silverware that helps boost the price.

    Still, it’s a great experience and you took so many beautiful pictures and had a great time!

  3. Hey as a once in a lifetime experience, it’s not that much money. I’m sure you two will remember that dinner for years to come. Fish flavored bread doesn’t sound like a great idea though!

  4. Same here, I just don’ t think I’d ever feel comfortable eating at a place like that (though you’ve gotta do it once!) Silverware, napkins…not for me. I’m used to down-home places; my family always went to ethnic restaurants and food courts when we ate out and I’ve never eaten at a fine dining place in my life. To be honest, the kind of dishes they serve don’t really appeal to me – I like what I like and I’m wary of some of the food combos the chefs come up with!

  5. […] Quarterlife Finances just highlighted beautiful fall clothes and shoes. Paranoid Asteroid spent $360 on dinner (it was in Paris, on a honeymoon, but […]

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