The Sense Of A Place

20150513SAVOY-slide-LLBP-jumbo

One of the finest food writers, Bee Wilson surprised me by choosing this moment to pen What Brexit Means for British Food, and to post it when most of us continue to consume information and analysis about the “more mportant” implications of that referendum one week ago. But then I read it, and was even more surprised. I expected her to mention how improved UK cuisine is after decades of exchange with the Continent’s great chefs, especially those like Guy Savoy who mentored more than one of today’s UK celebrity chefs. None of that. Much more interesting. I should not be surprised.

Read that post. Ironically, perhaps, it reminded me of this article from more than one year ago that I neglected to share here. Ironic because it seems quaint in light of current headlines from Europe and around the world. But the distraction seems timely. More than three decades ago I worked in restaurant Guy Savoy, in my hometown of Greenwich, CT (USA). Today we would call it a pop-up but in the early 1980s it was what I would call a miracle. He flew the Concorde weekly from Paris to operate this outpost for just a couple years and at the height of its success, shuttered it. His renewed focus on his Paris restaurant was surely what earned him the third Michelin star, which he has retained ever since.

I still do not tire of reading news about him, especially about how he keeps reinventing his home restaurant while retaining something essential. The chef-entrepreneur was one of the first to establish an outpost in the USA while maintaining his home base in France. It has been more than one decade since Amie and I enjoyed a meal as a guest in his rue Troyon restaurant. But not many days go by without my sensing the influence that working for him had on me. So, after reading Bee Wilson’s post, I also recommend that you have a look here:

Restaurant Guy Savoy Has a Striking New Home in Paris

Chef Savoy officially moves his signature restaurant on May 19, but the celebration has already begun. Hundreds of friends and associates turned up recently for a tour and a taste of some of the classics that have earned the chef three Michelin stars: artichoke with black truffle soup served with toasted mushroom brioche and truffle butter; a “club sandwich” amuse-bouche of foie gras and crisp toast served on a silver pin; a perfect vanilla bean mille-feuille. Dozens of Mr. Savoy’s food suppliers came from all over France to show off their raw ingredients, from rare blue-stemmed mushrooms and pale yellow “pineapple” strawberries to a 15-pound Breton turbot and a gray-white boiled tête de veau. Almost every day since then, regulars have been invited to partake of “practice” lunches and dinners.

The new restaurant sits at the top of a grand, red-carpeted stone staircase decorated with medallions and laurel wreaths. A series of dining rooms in shades of anthracite and brown are set along windows 10 feet high that offer a view of the Seine. The Louvre is on the far side of the river, the Pont Neuf to the right, the Square du Vert-Galant (a pointy-shaped spit of land at the tip of the Île de la Cité), straight ahead, the booksellers on the riverbank just below…

13SAVOY4-master675

Rhubarb at the new Restaurant Guy Savoy. CreditEd Alcock for The New York Times

Read the whole story here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s