09 June 2008


The French do not produce cuisine that is particularly noted for its vegetarian-friendly characteristics. Typical menu items in the stereotypical French bistro include any and all kinds of dead animals prepared in a classic fat-laden sauce. However, the basis for much of what people consider haute cuisine in the United States is rooted in French technique. If you ask nicely enough and give the staff enough previous notice, most chefs are more than happy to prepare vegetarian items using the same classic French approach to fine dining. L'Antibes was equipped to do just that.

L'Antibes is considered one of Columbus' top restaurants. It showed in all aspects of the experience, from the classically appointed dining room to the impeccable service. The food was equally exquisite.

The meal began with a salad prepared with an absolutely fantastic goat cheese atop young greens, radishes and onions in a light balsamic dressing. It is a basic salad concept elevated to another level by quality ingredients and skillful kitchen craftsmanship.

The main course was a cabbage, carrot and onion crepe prepared in a savory reduction that showcased a faintly Asian influence. It was very good, and proportioned in order to leave room for dessert.

I can never say no to a cheese plate, so obviously I said yes to L'Antibes' fromage. It was a goat cheese (the same, aforementioned, ultra-creamy variety), Roquefort and Brie with water crackers, strawberries and grapes. I also got to taste the lemon custard, which is pictured above. It was as good to eat as it was to view.

The biggest shortcoming at L'Antibes is hardly a fatal flaw. The beverage list has a few tasty cocktails and a decent selection of wines. The problem, however, is with the by-the-glass wine selections. They are limited in a move seemingly designed to push you toward buying a bottle. Unfortunately, when dining with people with dissimilar tastes in wine, this makes the list more difficult than it needs to be. That being said, there are nice choices by the bottle. If that doesn't float your boat, there are also cocktails and beers.

I might recommend calling a day ahead to make sure the chef can adequately prepare vegetarian eats for you if you go to L'Antibes. Although not essential, if you give the kitchen a chance to shine, they will shine. Even though France can't compete with India in terms of vegetarian reputation, they still succeed in making mouths water when pitted against any other nation or cooking style. L'Antibes might not have a veggie-friendly menu, but the French roots help create a memorable dining experience no matter your level of carnivorousness.


L'Antibes on Urbanspoon


Dawnzilla said...
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deraj1013 said...

I don't know if that's a vegetarian insult or a food-blogger insult. Either way, I know exactly what good food tastes like, and I think you are a sad human being.