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With an inspiring number of globally famous eateries opening in Bangkok over recent years, the city is without doubt no stranger to world-class establishments.

But for the tropical metropolis to become the only hub away from home of legendary restaurants — especially from France, a country known to be protective of its esteemed culinary heritage — is more than ordinary.

Setting a culinary milestone in Bangkok’s restaurant scene is the opening of Maison de la Truffe, Paris’ long-established fine-dining restaurant with 84 years of history.

TASTE OF PARISIAN FLAIR

Exquisite, seasonal truffles dominate in the only branch of the famous Maison de la Truffe outside France

The tagliatelle pasta with duck foie gras, truffle cream and shaved fresh summer truffle.

With an inspiring number of globally famous eateries opening in Bangkok over recent years, the city is without doubt no stranger to world-class establishments.

But for the tropical metropolis to become the only hub away from home of legendary restaurants — especially from France, a country known to be protective of its esteemed culinary heritage — is more than ordinary.

Setting a culinary milestone in Bangkok’s restaurant scene is the opening of Maison de la Truffe, Paris’ long-established fine-dining restaurant with 84 years of history.

Following the two original restaurants at Place de la Madeleine of the 8th district and Rue Marbeuf near the Champs-Elysées in Paris, the Bangkok venue is the brand’s first and only location outside France.

The 140-seater takes over a prime Thong Lor space that for 10 years was the home of Harvey restaurant and is the brainchild of new-gen and super wealthy entrepreneurs.

As many might have expected, the dining room, which is divided into a few different sections including a cosy bar area, private rooms and small shop corner, is decked out to demonstrate contemporary French glamour. Jazz lounge tunes help lend a laid-back vibe to the scene.

Because truffles are prized differently according to their seasonal type, the selection of dishes here change periodically and so do the prices. That is except for the classic dishes, which are prepared exactly to the original recipes from Paris and dominate half of the menu.

To ensure top quality truffles, the Bangkok joint, similar to its Paris restaurants, uses the fungi (fresh or preserved) from only three places — France, Italy and Australia.

Currently available here in fresh form is Burgundy summer truffle from southern France. Compared to the intensely-fragrant and rich-tasting Perigord black and Alba white truffles which are in season from November to January, the summer cultivar has a milder flavour, less intimidating aroma and more affordable price tag. That makes this current period of time ideal for the budget-conscious to enjoy the luxurious fungi.

At Maison de la Truffe, it is always recommended that guests kick off with a signature starter, truffled Brie (550 baht). It featured a plain-looking slice of imported French cow’s milk cheese cut open and stuffed with velvety smooth truffle-seethed mascarpone cream, and this provided an addictively creamy debut to the meal.

Beef carpaccio (1,100 baht), which came next, was a basic yet delightful platter of paper-thin sliced raw beef laced with special-recipe dressing, Parmesan cheese, arugula leaves and lots of freshly sliced summer truffle. The soft, hazel-coloured flesh of the fresh summer truffle exhibited a rather sweet nutty tang (some might say it reminds them of sweetcorn) and intermingled well with, not overpowering, the carpaccio.

With various dining zones, the 140-seat restaurant offers contemporary French glamour.

Truffle and egg are a perfect complement to one another. The marriage of the sharp fungi taste and the eggy mouthfeel, in any dish, proves simple yet heavenly for the palate. The restaurant’s French omelette with truffle and green salad (720 baht) was great evidence of this. The dish looked nothing much more than just a homestyle breakfast treat with an upscale dash, but what this best-selling classic from Paris had on offer was timeless ecstasy.

Another delicacy you would not want to miss is the restaurant’s famous melanosporum truffle pizza (2,200 baht). It’s a crispy, thin-crust pizza, made with dough that’s permeated with breaking Perigord truffle, topped with Parmesan, truffle oil, fresh arugula leaves and heaps of shaved black truffle to lend an even more luxurious earthy punch.

Also a Paris classic, scampi risotto with truffle (1,650 baht), prepared with top-quality Italian rice cooked with various cheeses and served with French scampi and shaved fungi, offered true satisfaction. Yet if you’re in the mood for meat-free luxury, go for the risotto with truffle (950 baht).

If I had to pick my favourite dish of the day, tagliatelle with duck foie gras and truffle cream (1,050 baht) would be it. The fresh pasta, pleasantly soft rather than al dente, came smothered in rich, smooth and yolky cream and was topped with a nice slab of duck liver, which was pan-seared to exhibit a crusty exterior that tightly encased the firm and velvety centre. A generous helping of shaved truffle lent a pleasingly pungent balance to the rich and creamy fare. An order of the dish (and perhaps nothing else) is enough to guarantee a worthwhile dining visit.

With various dining zones, the 140-seat restaurant offers contemporary French glamour.3000

Pan-roasted sea bass with vegetables tagliatelle, beurre blanc sauce and shaved truffle.

Melanosporum truffle pizza made with Perigord black truffle.

Truffled Brie with truffle mascarpone cream.

Beef carpaccio with Parmesan, arugula and sliced summer truffle.


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