• France's news in English

Hollande treats Obama to three-star French cuisine

The Local · 1 Dec 2015, 08:51

Published: 01 Dec 2015 08:51 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

President Francois Hollande chose to entertain Obama not in the gilt splendour of the Elysee Palace, but at L'Ambroisie, a restaurant with three Michelin stars in the swanky Place des Vosges square.

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls and US Secretary of State John Kerry were among the 12 people who sat down to dinner at the exclusive eatery.

The restaurant is normally closed on a Monday but opened especially for the esteemed guests.

The Michelin three-star restaurant, where the diners will pay up to €360 ($381) a head, is run by the chefs Mathieu and Bernard Pacaud.

Needless to say security was tight with the whole of the Place de Vosges sealed off to traffic and helicopters buzzing overhead and armed guards standing by.

But all that didn’t seem to affect the convivial atmosphere with Obama, a huge fan of traditional French gastronomy, allowing Hollande to choose his meal.

“I will follow the advice of the president,” Obama told Hollande when asked what he would be ordering.

It may have been a wise move from the US president who would probably have had no idea what he was ordering, without the help of a translation.

Obama ended up tucking into some wild fish from Brittany before a cheese board featuring matured comet, Roquefort, Brie de Meaux and Poitou goat’s cheese, which was followed by chocolate cake.

Story continues below…

All of the posh nosh was washed down with white Burgundy, a red Bordeaux and wine from Banyuls.

The two-hour meal was brought to a close at 10:10pm, with Hollande or at least a member of staff picking up the hefty bill.

Earlier in the day France pulled out its culinary big guns Monday for one of the greatest kitchen challenges ever: cooking lunch for the largest one-day gathering of world leaders in history.  Here's a look at the menu

The L'Ambroisie restaurant has mixed reviews on travel website Tripadvisor, earning four out of a possible five stars on the site's own review scale.
While the majority of diners ranked the eatery as an "excellent" place for a meal, there are no less than 27 reviews saying the experience was "terrible"
As a result, the restaurant doesn't even rank in TripAdvisor's top 2,500 restaurants in the French capital. 
Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
What Paris 'squalor pit' Gare du Nord will look like in future
All photos: Wilmotte et Assoicés

IN PICTURES: The universally accepted 'squalor pit of Europe' is finally getting a facelift.

Halloween: The ten spookiest spots in Paris
Is there really a ghost on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower? Photo: AFP

Read at your own peril.

Halloween holiday in France: Traffic nightmares and sun!
Photo: AFP

But it's great news for the country's beleaguered tourism industry.

French MPs vote to make Airbnb 'professionals' pay tax
Photo: AFP

Do you make a lot of money through Airbnb in France? You'll have to pay a share to the taxman in future.

France and Britain accused of abandoning Calais minors
Photo: AFP

Scores of young migrants are forced to sleep rough for a second night.

France given wake up call as it bids for Brexit business
The business district 'La Defense' in Paris. Photo: AFP

France clearly has some work to do if it really wants to pinch business from the UK post-Brexit.

Mouth fun? French words you just can't translate literally
Do you know the French word for throat-support? Photo: AFP

Word of warning: Don't translate French literally.

How France plans to help its stressed-out police force
Yellow smoke rises around French police officers in Paris holding a banner reading "Solidarity with our colleagues, police angry". All photos: AFP

Could these measures stop the cops from protesting?

'3,000 migrants dispersed' after 'Jungle' clearance
Photo: AFP

While thousands of migrants have been bussed out around France, new ones are arriving all the time and thousands of others have simply been dispersed aid agencies say.

Fifteen of the most bizarre laws in France
Photo: Matthew Powell/Flickr

A must read for anyone who wants to stay on the right side of the law in France.

The annoying questions only a half French, half Brit can answer
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Forget Brangelina's chateau - here are nine others you've got to see
The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
jobs available