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Nibbles and Sips Around Town – March 17, 2015

Jordan Wright
March 17, 2015
Special to DC Metro Theater Arts
 

Goût de/Good France! Chooses DC Chef Franck Loquet for Grand Gastronomic Dinner 

The pretty new lobby at the Sofitel

The pretty new lobby at the Sofitel

This Thursday, March 19th 1300 chefs from around the world will express their love of French cuisine by creating a specially designed one-time dining event.

Organized by noted French chef, Alain Ducasse, and the Ministry of Finance Affairs and International Development, the ‘French dinner’ will be held at iCi Urban Bistro in the beautifully renovated Art Deco era Sofitel Hotel, Washington, DC and presided over by the French General Consul Olivier Serot-Almeras.

iCi Urban Bistro Executive Chef Franck Loquet

iCi Urban Bistro Executive Chef Franck Loquet

Parisian-born Franck Loquet who presides over the kitchen of iCi Urban Bistro and who had once been an instructor at Ecole de Cuisine Alain Ducasse, was chosen from thousands of chefs.  He is the only chef in DC to be awarded this notable honor.

The parameters for the lavish seven-course menu were well defined.  First, dinner must start with an aperitif.  It should then continue with a cold starter, a hot starter, fish or shellfish, meat or poultry, and French cheese – – culminating with a chocolate dessert.  Adding to these strict guidelines, the entire meal must be served with French wines and digestifs.  The judges felt that the cuisine should be accessible to all – – from casual bistros to high-end restaurants.

For a true reflection of each region the committee required the meal to be based on seasonal and local products.  Something we heartily endorse!  Another rule of the competition was that the dinner be prepared with lower levels of fat, sugar, salt and protein, making it a fantastic challenge for any chef.

Here’s the menu Chef Loquet designed, and I sampled!  All in the name of research, dear readers.

A basket of gougeres and assorted in house baked breads

A basket of gougeres and assorted in house baked breads

Apéritif – gougères served with Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve Champagne 

Branzino Tartare

Branzino Tartare

First – Branzino Tartare – with Vanilla, ginger and grapefruit pearls and radish salad 

Woodland Mushroom Tart

Woodland Mushroom Tart

Second – Woodland Mushroom Tart – topped with truffled goat cheese mousse 

Atlantic Salmon 'Mi-Cuit'

Atlantic Salmon ‘Mi-Cuit’

Third – Atlantic Salmon “Mi-Cuit” – with English pea purée, baby Spring vegetable fricassee and leek coulis 

Herb Crusted Lamb Loin

Herb Crusted Lamb Loin

Fourth – Herb Crusted Lamb Loin – with sweet onion mousseline, grilled scallions, pickled pearl onions and olive jus 

Fifth – French cheeses with accouterments 

Cremeux Aux Trois Chocolats

Cremeux Aux Trois Chocolats

Dessert – Cremeux Aux Trois Chocolats – served with Le Cèdre Malbec 2011 

iCi Urban Bistro is located one block from the White House at 806 15th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005.  For reservations to this once-in-a-lifetime French culinary extravaganza visit www.goodfrance.eventbrite.com.

Photo credit: Jordan Wright

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