French Restaurant Review: La Dame de Pic in Megève

French Restaurant Review: La Dame de Pic in Megève

Lovely Megève in the French Alps has become as much a destination for food-lovers all year round as it is for skiers during the winter and hikers in summer. This pretty, plummy little town of 3,200 residents has a Michelin three-star (Les Flocons de Sel), a Michelin two-star (La Table de l’Alpaga), a Michelin green-star (for an especially good and notably environmentally sustainable restaurant) for Le Toit du Monde, just on the edge of town, and a charming Michelin one-star, La Dame de Pic, by France’s most famous female chef, Anne-Sophie Pic.

Pic, whose main table is in Valence and who also has a Michelin two-star in Lausanne, loves the Alps and this is reflected by her intriguing use of Alpine produce at this beautiful dining room with a cathedral ceiling, a picture-window wall overlooking the surrounding mountains, and wooden panels and finishes that recall Japanese ryokans. Joining friends who were staying at the hotel for lunch in March, we opted for the Menu Pic, a seven-course sampler that put Pic’s gastronomic imagination deliciously on display.

We began with berlingots, which are usually a type of hard candy, but here are lozenges of delicate green pasta stuffed with Brie from the Rothschilds’ Domaine des 30 Arpents outside Paris (the Rothschilds are partners in the hotel, which was built on their land in Megève) in an umami-rich broth of kombu, or Japanese kelp. This pairing was intriguingly inspired, because the subtle mushroomy, bloomy taste of the cheese met the ruddy sea vegetable so brilliantly.

Next, Pic’s riff on one of her father’s most emblematic creations, sea bass with caviar in Champagne sauce. Her version respects the luxurious succulence of the original dish but brightens and amplifies it by adding sake to the sauce along with an almost invisible garnish of granulated Japanese lemon. A serving of impeccably roasted poularde de Bresse stuffed with tarragon and served with a bergamot-spiked sauce suprême, an offal tartlette, kohlrabi and pickled pine-tree buds was a magnificent demonstration of Pic’s exacting culinary technique and unbridled gastronomic imagination, as was a dessert of Comice pear roasted with Madras curry and served with rose-bud-infusion ice cream.

Service throughout this meal was gracious, good-humoured and impressively precise, and the sommelier did a fine job with the wine pairing we chose to accompany our meal. Whatever the season, this excellent restaurant is very much worth seeking out for an exultantly good contemporary French meal of the highest calibre.

373 Chemin des Follières, Megève. Tel. (33) 04 50 78 62 65

Prix-fixe menus €270, €190 (lunch), average à la carte €185, (closed from April 2-June 15)

From France Today Magazine

Do you enjoy French wine and food? For recipes, dinner ideas, chef interviews, and suggestions for pairing food and wine, visit Taste of France!


Lead photo credit : Damede terrasse©Four-seasons.

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Alexander Lobrano grew up in Connecticut, and lived in Boston, New York and London before moving to Paris, his home today, in 1986. He was European Correspondent for Gourmet magazine from 1999 until its closing, and has written about food and travel for Saveur, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Guardian, Travel & Leisure, Departures, Conde Nast Traveler, and many other publications in the United States and the United Kingdom. He is the author of HUNGRY FOR PARIS, 2nd Edition (Random House, 4/2014), HUNGRY FOR FRANCE (Rizzoli, 4/2014), and MY PLACE AT THE TABLE, newly published in June 2021.

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