September 8, 2018

Best of Macau day 1: wine and fireworks with dinner

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A few hours after our long lunch, we got up to the top of the Grand Lisboa Hotel for dinner at Robuchon au Dôme.  As there will be some fireworks tonight as part of the Macau International Fireworks Display Contest and Hello Kitty was pretty set on watching it, I asked for a table facing the water.  I was ever so grateful that a suitable table was arranged for us.

We passed up the special crustacean menu in favor of the current seasonal summer menu, which would better match the wines we had picked out earlier in the afternoon.

Crispy waffle scampi seasoning with espelette pepper - always nice to start with this.

We had ordered a bottle of Champagne from the cellar, so we didn't get the Champagne trolley in front of us tonight.  The first trolley we saw was the bread trolley, and as usual I asked the staff not to give us too much bread - as one basket was sufficient for the 6 of us.

The next trolley to come was the butter trolley, bearing the two mounds of Pamplie butter.  Only one of us asked for unsalted butter...

Le caviar: Impérial caviar and king crab refreshed with crustacean jelly and light cauliflower cream - few dishes from the Robuchon repertoire have the same visual impact as this iconic offering.  The layer of caviar from Sologné; the cauliflower dots (61 of them on my plate tonight) with their parsley "nipples/pupils";  and the reflective, bling-bling plates.

And I'm always happy to take in the symphony of flavors coming from the various components: salty, savory, umami, and sweet.  They just come together so seamlessly with this dish.

Le Niçoise: Niçoise salad “new style”, slow boiled egg and tuna belly - so this was a "deconstructed/reimagined/reinterpreted" version of the classic.  We start with a soft-boiled egg coated in lettuce coulis (Hello Kitty immediately thinks of Dr. Seuss...), with a layer of tomato concasse with garlic and bell peppers, with a few strips of smoky and fatty tuna belly and diced black olives on top.  Diced carrots, peas, along with lettuce and turmeric coulis complete the dish.  Gotta say that there was some good acidity and a little spice here.  Pretty interesting.

La girole: girolle mushroom escorted with Comte cheese ravioli - very tasty ravioli stuffed with Comté, sitting alongside girolles in a girolle bouillon.  The crispy pork crackling - only three tiny strips! - was awesome.

Le homard cardinalisé: roasted lobster with salted butter, stewed green peas in Château Chalon broth with a hint of mint - a slightly different take on the lobster dish I have tasted multiple times here.  Still got plenty of peas here since it's summer, with enoki mushrooms (えのき茸) and we've got a few smudges of spring onion jam on the side.  Garnished with mint and perilla flowers.

When this black box shows up, it's time for the Rossini... It's always nice to get a whiff of the smoky aroma as it permeates the space around us.

Le bœuf: beef châteaubriand and foie gras "Rossini" style with vintage Port wine - I was a little surprised that instead of one long tube, we've got two stubbier ones tonight.  The beef was just as tender as I remembered, and the foie gras just as jiggly.

Pommes soufflés

Broth with a dash of ginger.

The next trolley to come around was the cheese trolley.  I chose only two, but unfortunately can't remember the identity of the one on the left... The 36-month Mimolette is always tasty with a lot of depth.

La perle noire: cranberries perles, cacao natural jelly with Armagnac crème brulée - a nice pre-dessert.  Vanilla ice cream at the bottom with crunchy pearls and cranberry coulis.  Inside the ball of jelly we've got a filling of Armagnac and vanilla cream.

La symphonie des douceurs: believe it or not, I only took two items from the dessert trolley.  The first was this strawberry cream roll with cherry center.

Île flottant - it's been too long since I last had this.  Yummy and light.

Raspberry and lychee sorbet - 2 of the 3 ingredients in Ispahan.  The only thing I took from the ice cream trolley

Canelé - the one small thing I took from the mignardises trolley.

We had decided to take things easy and only picked out 4 bottles of wine this afternoon...

1996 André Beaufort Ambonnay Brut, dégorgée en Janvier 2012 - interesting nose that almost reminded me of Chinese sour plum.  Flinty and mineral.

2011 Henri Boillot Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Clos de la Mouchere - nice ripeness here without sweetness, with good acidity balance.  A little hot on the palate.  Later on the nose grew bigger and more toasty.

2007 Vincent Girardin Meursault 1er Cru Perrieres - nice and balanced, rounded on the palate with good acidity.  Showed better than the Boillot.

1990 Philip Togni - starting serving 15 minutes after decanting, and the wine opened after another 30 minutes in glass.  Big nose of pencil lead, cigar smoke, earthy, and green pepper notes.  Not as much sweet fruit as expected.  Very nicely balanced.

Management was kind enough to treat us to a bottle of dessert wine.  The last time I had the pleasure of tasting this was some 7 years ago.

1995 Tirecul La Gravière Cuvée Madame - nice and sweet.  Mature now, with honey and a little nutty notes.  So thick and viscous on the palate.

This was another wonderful meal here, and of course we were grateful for the pampering we received. We did manage the catch some of the fireworks tonight, although we didn't get an unobstructed view. Oh well...

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