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Posts Tagged ‘Pressed duck

The numbered duck (Le número de votre Canard: 1115233)

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La Tour d’Argent, a restaurant by Seine in Paris with a view of Notre Dame.

It is hard to not be enchanted by Tour d’Argent. I confess I was a just a touch concerned upon arrival. The downstairs seating area, with its mini-museum display of table settings of the bygone days, was a bit tired looking. However, a quick champagne, hors d’oeuvres and an elevator ride later we are seated at the table of the main dining area where all my concerns disappeared. Dining area is shiny with slivers, crystals and chandeliers. Rapidly, the room started filling up. We were seated at the center of the room. From where I sat, the view of Notre Dame was occasionally interrupted by Jeeves like accoutrement of the servers. Facing me was the duck press station, where an old gentleman went about the task of meticulously pressing ducks. I would have described it as an assembly line process were it not for the exaggerated rituals associated with the task.

Number of servers far exceeded the number of guests. While their movement in and out of the kitchen seemed chaotic, service at the table was a well choreographed dance. A couple of waiters coordinated placing the food on the table while the senior of the two took time to describe the food. A similar coordination took place when plates were removed from the table. Pacing was perfect. Nothing felt hurried, nothing felt delayed, no ho hum moment. One particular ritual felt quaint in this age – my husband’s menu had the prices and not mine. Wine pouring on the other hand could only be described  as elaborate. A lot of deep inhalation, swishing and slurping happened before we were served ours.

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Written by Som

December 28, 2012 at 4:50 am

Posted in Europe, France, Paris

Tagged with ,