Louroc translates to the “rock” which is aptly named given it is nestled on a rock on the southern tip of the Cap d’Antibes as part of the Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc. Set among acres of pine trees and on the pristine coastline, the hotel was built in 1869 as a private mansion and transformed into a hotel in 1889, the hotel is the epitome of luxury with the crowning jewel being the saltwater infinity pool built into the rock on the edge of the Mediterranean.
We stop by the bar for a drink before heading to the restaurant. A perfect negroni for me and a refreshing spritz for Alex. The bar has a beautiful nautical theme and is the perfect spot to wait before heading over to the restaurant.
Louroc is a restaurant which combines the abundant and quality produce of the Provence and the Mediterranean with simple Provence cuisine with the flair of Escoffier style presentation. This is the view from our table is pretty spectacular and overlooks both the pool and the Mediterranean. The view from our table is stunning as shown below:
Alex decides to have a champagne, I elect to commence with a glass from the Margaux I ordered instead.
The Bread and Amuse Bouche
To start we are provided with an amuse bouche, focaccia, freshly baked bread and herb paste and tapenade from the garden and a couple of spherification tasters to whet the taste buds.
The quality of the amuse bouche, the bread and condiments (crafted from herbs from the hotel’s garden) really set the tone for the evening.
For the evening, I opt for the Chateau Giscours La Sirene de Giscours, (2014), Bordeaux, France.
I decide to go for the second wine of the from Chateau Giscours, Margaux. It’s a majority Cabernet Sauvignon blend. On the nose it’s rather perfumed aromas of blackcurrants, cherry, balsamic and tobacco. On the palate, there are plums, cassis notes of cherry liqueur, mint and earthiness and smoky oak. The wine is full-bodied with beautiful silky tannins which flow into a long finish.
We both opt for the same entree; the large pot caught langoustines, seared, with celery and lemon tree leaf jelly, tangy cream with local yuzu juice.
The beautiful succulent langoustines with the crisp freshness of the celery wrap and the citrus of the lemon and yuzu. The contrast of the richness of the cream and smoothness of the jelly is wonderful touch. The little saline bursts of the caviar on-top melds perfectly with the langoustines. This is a dish which fires on all cylinders.
The Main Course
The fillet of beef, pan fried with black pepper, Antibes pissaladière flavours with cooking jus.
A perfectly cooked tender fillet beef with a charred outer portion and the juicy centre is the crown of the dish. The salinity of the mix of onion puree and the rich velvety pan jus poured over is beautiful as well as textural contrast of the two elements. It’s the rich flow of the natural flavours of the beef and the tangy salinity of the pissaladière that just makes this dish perfect. The aesthetic of the dish and theatrics of the jus being poured is the signature of a wonderful main course.
The photo above shows the dish before the jus is poured and the photo below has the full dish post pour.
Alex opts for the lobster for her main course. I was tempted, however given I had the langoustines for the entree I decided to mix it up with the beef.
The pot-caught lobster, roasted in its shell, cherries and fresh almonds, butter beaten with lime and verbena from the garden.
Although I didn’t get to taste the entire dish, I did get a taste of the lobster which was cooked perfectly and showcased its beautiful sweet tender flesh. The dish definitely ticked the aesthetics box too!
I opt for the Cuban coffee variation; Grilled coffee espuma, tobacco-leaf-smoked ice cream, dark old rum cream. Alex has the Nyangbo’ chocolate; Thin crunchy cocoa bean, farigoule infused ice cream, chocolate emulsion, cocoa-nib crumble. The two desserts have a similar style, a thin crisp shell shaped in the form of the natural produce of the dessert’s “theme”; a cacao pod and the coffee bean.
The coffee dessert had a smoky tobacco-leaf-ice cream and a rich dark old rum cream which was encased in a rich quality sensuous chocolate shell. It’s a pure dream.
The view of the sunset as we enjoy our desserts is beautiful. We had a second dessert as the restaurant knew it was our honeymoon; a beautiful nougat and ice cream to finish.
We have some petit fours brought out to finish the night; a berry tart, chocolate nut clusters and some toffee sweets.
When I review restaurants, I do not publish a score just a narrative with only one exception, if a restaurant has received the perfect 10 / 10 score. In assessing Louroc Restaurant, the culinary execution could not be faulted, the aesthetics of each dish was without flaw and reflective of a masterpiece which would belong in a gallery and the flow of colours, flavours, textures were a transcendent sensory experience.
The essential elements for a world class dining experience are there: quality of produce, the freshness of the herbs from the garden, the extensive wine list and the quality of the service. When one considers the view of the Mediterranean and the pool, it is hard to think of a recent dining experience which would touch this night.
When that evening sea breeze flowed through and stroked our faces during dessert, I don’t think there was any doubt what the score would be. So here it is: Louroc Restaurant, Cap d’Antibes 10/10.