Originality and technique at historic Paris restaurant
What makes it so special? One of Paris's oldest and most prestigious restaurants, Pavillon Ledoyen was given a new lease of life when Yannick Alléno took the helm in 2014 and introduced boundary-pushing modern French cuisine. The restaurant was last year’s Highest New Entry, sponsored by Aspire Lifestyles, debuting at No.31.
Typical dishes: Alléno's originality, technique and obsession with flavour are evident in hot sea urchin soup, served in a burned grapefruit shell and accompanied by crispy duck skin topped with foie gras, plus iodized granita. It's followed by a celebration of milk-fed lamb comprising leg tartare with quince and black truffle, saddle with pickles, and cutlet and collar with a sage fritter.
Some background: Legend has it that Napoleon met Josephine at the Ledoyen, which which first opened in 1791. Other regulars included Robespierre, Degas and Zola.
About the chef: Alléno learned his craft under some of France's greatest chefs, including Gabriel Biscay, Roland Durand and most notably Louis Grondard, before earning star status heading up the kitchens of Scribe and Le Meurice.
Other ventures: The chef runs a 16-strong restaurant empire under the Alléno, Stay and Terroir Parisien brands, which stretches from Morocco and Dubai to Taipei and Hong Kong. Both the Ledoyen restaurant and Alléno Courchevel at the Cheval Blanc hotel hold three Michelin stars.
Images: Philippe Vaurès Santamaria / Portrait: Geoffroy de Boismenu