Forget the fruity mocktails, La Dame de Pic à Londres has unveiled sophisticated non-alcoholic drink pairings that go well with the dishes on its tasting menus. Reporting by Jenny Southan
Building on the “Sober Travel” trend that Globetrender predicts will be important in 2023 and beyond, the fine-dining French restaurant The Lady of Pic at the Four Seasons Ten Trinity Square hotel in London, will “redefine the dining experience” with the launch of “Impregnation Absolue”, a new globally inspired non-alcoholic beverage pairing menu.
Despite the odd-sounding name (I’m not sure “soaking” is what diners are looking for), the concept is actually one that refers to the process of soaking, steaming, smoking, or marinade the ingredients so that their aromas are enhanced, creating new surprises. flavors in dishes and drinks.
The innovative selection of soft drinks includes rare teas from across East Asia; coffee grown sustainably in Africa and South America; and locally produced kombucha.
Working closely with Head Sommelier Paz Levinson, Chef Anne-Sophie Pic has crafted a “dry eat” menu “based on the art of metamorphosis.” As part of the culinary experience, diners are invited to observe the transformation process before the dishes arrive through the ritual preparation of cocktails and tea, or the mixing of certain ingredients for the sauce that unfolds before them. at table.
This serves as an aromatic prelude to their dining experience and allows guests to smell the aromas that will be blended into the dishes, stimulating all five senses. Drinks include Genmaicha Collinsa non-alcoholic cocktail based on Genmaicha tea, lime cordial and cardamom, whose tangy and earthy notes go well with Heritage tomato marinated in Nikka whiskey and a refreshing tagette and mint ice cream.
Similarly, the aniseed notes of the Cornish turbot glazed with pastis, pepper, agastache and lavender and curry sabayon go perfectly with the warm and aromatic blend of allspice and cardamom from the Seedlip Martini.
The berlingots, delicate balls of pasta filled with St Céra and infused with geranium, shiso and chartreuse, are also inspired by and associated with the creamy, round and floral texture of Hon Gyokuro tea.At the other end of the spectrum, the strength of La Dame de Pic London Cafe Geishacrafted using the Chemex method for pure flavor, finds a natural companion in Hereford beef tenderloin, which is also marinated in coffee and served with mini eggplant tempura, rich candied oxtail and fresh dill.
“Absolute Impregnation” also extends to desserts, imagined by Chef Pic and executive pastry chef Eric Verbauwhede; the sweet notes of seasonal White Millefeuille with Tahitian vanilla, Jasmine jelly and a cloud of Voatsiperifery Pepper are slightly enhanced by the delicate aromas of citrus fruits and chamomile found in the sparkling Bla tea.Drawing inspiration from around the world, the new soft drink offering also includes a selection of rare teas made with the help of respected tea sommelier Kiona Malinka, who has chosen varieties such as Bai Yao Zhenisa custom made Chinese white tea from the top young shoots of the harvest.
Kiona’s deep cultural understanding of agriculture and terroir highlights the same subtle regional qualities typically associated with wine.
Anne-Sophie Pic’s established partnership with Maki Maruyama of the Jugetsudo Tea House also brings additional harmony to the menu: the premium Japanese tea has been carefully balanced with the chef’s favorite ingredients, hojicha and cubeb pepper in genmaicha and tonka beans, creating a moment of unity between flavor and aroma.As well as sourcing from premium suppliers, La Dame de Pic London’s new drinks use components that are the result of time-tested dedicated extractions, fermentations and infusions at their renowned laboratory in Valencia, in the southern France, where herbs and flowers, from Douglas fir and green cardamom to fresh Thai basil and lovage leaves, are given a contemporary twist using classic techniques.
Anne-Sophie Pic says, “Working with Paz Levinson, our Executive Head Sommelier, encouraged me to expand the world of infusion. I wanted to develop aromatic dialogues between products or dishes, including drinks. Food and drink combinations were born, showing just how exciting this new avenue of culinary exploration can be.
The “Print.eAbsolute Nation » the menu is available at La Dame de Pic London at the Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square. Pairing menus will be priced as four courses for £75, six courses for £95 and eight courses for £110.