I was caught off guard once and asked what was my favorite restaurant in the world or the best thing I’ve ever eaten. The first thing I could think of was L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Hong Kong. This is going to sound extremely pretentious but I’ve eaten at Joel Robuchon’s restaurants in Hong Kong, Paris and Las Vegas. But, Hong Kong wins out of the three.
Yes, L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon was awarded three Michelin stars, but the reason why I love this particular restaurant in Hong Kong is because they have MINI BREAD. At the beginning of the meal, they bring you a small bread basket full of mini croissants, bacon baguettes, cheese baguettes, apricot walnut bread, brioches… it’s a carb lover’s dream. In case you were wondering which one is my favorite, it’s the bacon baguette. The croissant is a close second.
This bread is baked fresh every day in the restaurant’s own bakery. When I ate at L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Paris, I was most excited about the mini bread. Imagine my shock and disappointment when the staff told me that the chef does not feel like he can make bread as good as the local boulangerie so the restaurant gets all of their baguettes from across the street.
While I could probably devote an entire blog post to the mini basket delivered straight from heaven, I’ll stop while I’m ahead. I started my meal with the Maine lobster salad with avocado coulis, tofu and lemon olive oil. It was such a light and fresh dish– a definite winner. The rack of lamb with herbs and mixed salad really blew me away. Out of the three main dishes we ordered, I thought the rack of lamb was the best and it also came with the most amazing mashed potatoes (not pictured). These mashed potatoes tasted like creamed butter (this is not a bad thing). If you only order two things, get the lobster salad and rack of lamb.
With our meal, we could choose a selection from the dessert or cheese cart. To be perfectly honest, I have been spoiled by desserts in Paris so I wasn’t terribly impressed by any of the desserts. But, I liked having options and getting to try different things.
At the Hong Kong restaurant, they have L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon and Le Jardin de Joel Robuchon. While it’s the same location, L’Atelier is only counter seating while Le Jardin has more comfortable couches and even has outdoor seating. This particular time I ate at Le Jardin (because I was with my grandmother), but I’ve eaten at L’Atelier many times. Le Jardin is priced slightly higher and is the only place with the dessert and cheese cart. As long as you don’t mind sitting at a shared counter space, L’Atelier is the place to be. You can talk with the waiters and watch the chefs do their magic in the open-air kitchen. I hope you get the chance to eat at L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon. And, I hope you think of me while partaking in the bread basket.