Philippe Labbé
Nazionalita: Francia
Localita: 75116 París
Indirizzo: 10 Avenue d'Iéna
Chiusura:: Domingos y Lunes
Prezzo: 150/225 €
Menu di degustazione: 135 €

 Shangri-La is one of the most luxurious hotels in Paris, together with Crillon, George V, Plaza Athénée, Le Meurice, Le Bristol, etc. Set up with Chinese capital and aimed at the wealthiest and most glamorous visitors of the City of Light, the place has different restaurants managed by famous chef Philippe Labbé, hired after obtaining the most brilliant marks for different châteaux on the Côte d’Azur. Let’s focus on two of them: Shang Palace (8/10, see Restaurants section) and this one, Shangri-LA, which is faithful to French gastronomy’s purest values. Palace atmosphere, Versaillesque service, universal cellar and spectacular cuisine, ruled by perfection, erudition, technique, refinement and harmony. Extremely intellectual contemporary dishes that are not without originality. Although academic, Philippe’s cuisine rimes with modernity and singularity. Very personal and pertinently reflexive combinations that brim with varied motifs and turn to be very elaborate and really complex. An evolutionary style, not shocking at all, that characterizes the virtuosity and the perfection of the dishes. Noble and sumptuous dishes which offer the best and most expensive raw materials. At L’Abeille, people are very liberal with expenses, time and efforts: “la Grandeur pour la Grandeur”.
The appetizers, the cheese board, the petits-fours, etc. are all synonymous with exuberance. In the middle of the menu, you will enjoy an impeccable and colourful dish focused on beet, proposed in three versions: a boiled brunoise swimming in the red juice made with the bulb and slightly seasoned with vinegar, and a translucent one lain over some mustard ice cream that has been previously placed in the middle of the beets. Refinement and naturality with renewed classical tastes. The dish of white asparagus, really exceptional, shortly and very precisely cooked, al dente, in order to preserve their earthy and bitter original taste, are impregnated with some tarragon powder and accompanied with two counterpoints: relatively big balls of yoghurt enhanced with kumquat and perfumed with tarragon leaves and other balls made of sweet caramel that taste like toffees. Let’s repeat it: this proposal deserves a 10/10 for the magnificence and the treatment of the main ingredient as well as for the clairvoyance of the accompaniments. Another glorious construction is the big crab pincer, boiled and displayed in a sculptural way, lain over some red pepper emulsion that looks like gazpacho, surrounded by an exquisite crown of spider crab, peas and green strawberries and accompanied with some foam from the above-mentioned seafood. Is it possible to satiate the palate in such a refined, delicious and plural way? We doubt it. And here comes another masterpiece made with huge crayfish medallions cooked into sea water and presented into the animal’s shell: these slender, consistent and extremely tasty pieces are served with cucumber balls and strips filled with lemon cream and brightened with brushstrokes of date purée. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a really eminent crayfish worthy of a haute cuisine restaurant. Exceptional ethics. A model for those who think they are able to make attractive dishes without any efforts. The meat proposals go on with a thick foie gras medallion, shortly grilled to enhance its properties and garnished with some almonds foam, raspberry purée, duck juice and a great bun seasoned with spices, soft fruit and almonds; the full monty! Who can beat that? Every recipe is strenuous.
The fish, that deserve high praises for their quality, doneness and elegance, follow French trends that are quite different from the Spanish ones: filets without skin, longer cooking times, less wild flavours. A good example of this is the salmon, served with almonds and parley emulsion, almonds purée and lemon hints. Or the turbot, proposed with fennel, cockles and razor-shells, together with baby potatoes, broccoli and green strawberries cream, and some chicken broth refreshed with soft fruit vinegar.
The meat proposals reach the top level, both the pigeon –sublime, regardless its seasonings– and the huge lamb shoulder, caramelized and roasted with garlic cream and served with chick pea purée, dates filled with lemon cream and some beans, green asparagus and green apple salad. This shows how the chef takes up all the challenges he has to face.
This mastery also applies to the desserts, which are all tremendous: caramelized fennel with lemon ice cream and mousse; meringue stuffed with aubergine, caviar and acid aubergine juice. Surprise is present in all the dishes. Though orthodox, they brim with tender creativity.
If you look for a three-Michelin-starred restaurant, this place can honestly compete with the ones you can find in Paris. Shangri-LA follows the same philosophy: admirable culture and unshakable materialization.