Less than 2 weeks ago Clou moved to a new more intimate location with a bigger menu and fewer guest with the goal of achieved the coveted second Michelin star. A good friend of mine is a close friend with the owner so we had talked about going to Clou for a while so now the timing was right on the money.
The first snack was a Clou classic in form of an oyster with passion fruit and ginger. Nice combinations of flavors with off course was a great match for our vintage Cava.
We continued with a nicoise olives branch with aged Parmesan. Very umami rich and delicious with a very distikt olive taste.
Our next starter was to be bit more fresh in the form of a radish with anchovies and pickled vegetables. Quite bland
The same was unfortunately also the case for the last snack. Cockles mushrooms with a shore crab cream. Completely raw the mushrooms had little taste.
The first actual dish was one of the best. Brandada with Oscientra caviar. A very delicate and creamy brandada was a great match for the rich and salty caviar. Very delicious.
The next dish was a very simple dish, which was very delicious. A ravioli cooked not even al dente with a lot of bite, in the best possible way, made with a bit of ink and small “nuts” for a great crunchy element and fried sage. Soo simple and delicious.
The next dish I struggled with. Turbot seasoned with vanilla and lemon. This off course gave a sweetness to the dish, which was nice, but we all wondered how this would taste with just a bit more salt and hereby maybe more balanced
The next dish was maybe my favorite. Not because it was the most delicious but because of the story. Jonathan met a farmer who in his mind made the best butter he tasted so the best way to honor this is simple to serve it no fuss with a piece of toasted bread. Yes, it had been helped by a bit of duck fat, but that you just have to love.
Moving from fish to meat dishes off course Clou would serve a palate cleanser in the form of a sorbet. An ice-cold French kiss they called it. A simple and fun element.
We continued with a consommé royal. Rich delicious and I found the use of a cold consommé quite fun and interesting and off course; the flavors were more potent served cold then steaming hot.
At a French restaurant off course, they have to have at least one fois gras dish on the menu. Here in the form of raw fois gras with a “graham cracker” and several citrus elements. I like the fattiness of a fois gras but here the citrus elements simply dominated the dish. Too bad in my mind.
Next up was black blood sausage with black berries and truffles. A very delicious dish were the truffles announced their presence in the form of a strong smell but was mild in taste. Here I was happy that the sausage take center stage.
I love sweet bread and I love lobster. Surf and turf I have never understood though. Each element was amazing on their own but the combination was just weird to me. My two friends loved it though.
We continued with a very simple dish, but it was just so good. Fresh goat cheese spread on a bun with a Phiri Phiri sauce. Simple but the flavors just worked so well together.
The first dessert was very beautiful. Lemon and honey goes well together. The use of popping candy should in my mind however not be used at a restaurant at this level.
Our next dessert parted the table, which I can understand why. Tomatoes, warm olive oil, cheese and chocolate. I liked the combination but it was actually a dish that was very difficult to eat, as you had to eat it quite accurate to get just the right amount of everything for it to be good. If not enough tomatoes it was too salty, if not enough cheese it was too chocolate rich and so forth.
A second last dessert was again a classic combination. Passion fruit gel with coconut cream to mimic that of an egg. Nice but nothing new or amazing.
The last dessert was however quite innovative. Seldom have I heard anyone present something as burnt where that was the purpose, but here it was. The burnt pine was off course very bitter which exactly was the purpose to match the chocolate ice-cream. Very delicious.
Will Clou receive the second star? That is very hard to predict. They serve classic French food in a classic restaurant. Having never been at the old restaurant it is hard for me to say whether the location in itself is a step up. The décor is a matter of taste, but it didn’t give a luxurious feel that you get in a restaurant like Geranium or Marhcal and with the kitchen split between two floors, I had a hard time understanding what made the new location is a step up.
The most important is still the food. With about 20 courses, all of them were nice but none of them gave me a foodie orgasm, which I would expect to have at least one or two of at a restaurant at this level. I think it therefore just reaffirmed the fact that I love the innovation of the Nordic kitchen but also that I am not a fan of the classic fine dining French restaurants.