The room is blond and modern, the diners are dressed in black, the food is the edible equivalent of a bespoke suit. Appetizers include a seafood tartare sampler and coriander-cured trout. Entrées range from sauteed salmon with chorizo and steamed clams to vegetable cassoulet to a lamb dish with chops, roast loin, and whipped potatoes.
Best Salad, June 2004
Choosing wisely from a restaurant menu can be so tedious. We may be peckish but not want anything too heavy. The lobster looks divine but is such a commitment—and no hands free for the cell. The ahi's lovely, too, but didn't we have that yesterday? Beluga, though scrumptious, calls for a good belt of vodka, and our companions may find that unseemly. The folks at Jaan
at Raffles L'Ermitage Hotel seem to have felt our pain. They've graciously combined just the right amounts of all our favorites in one elegant bowl. The $45 Salad makes its price point obvious, but its flavors are considerably more subtle, thanks in no small part to the shards of black truffle whose scent will perk up even the most impassive proboscis. At lunch, it's an airy bed of baby and micro greens, with chunks of lobster and noisettes of seared tuna cuddling with baby English peas, tender white asparagus, the teensiest of blini crowned with caviar, and teardrop tomatoes bursting with the flavor of summer. At dinner, the lobster is served in its birthday suit.