Le Jardin (means the garden in English) is a fairly new French restaurant in happening BGC. It is owned by Chef Gils Brault of Toris Gourmands in Ho Chi Minh City(Saigon), Vietnam, Chef Jonas Ng (Huat Pot) and Chef Hasset Go (Med Chef). I had been hearing not so nice things about Le Jardin so was not excited when I got an invite for a little date night with Irene.
Le Jardin is a beauty, design wise, high ceiling with a dominating white and green color scheme. The views outside the big picturesque windows are wonderful too. There are lots of wonderful items on the walls as well as a nice wine rack and bar area. This is definitely a date place, where you bring someone and have them ooh and ahh about the place and the view. The place is considered casual but you can’t help but dress up nicely.
Le Jardin does not offer a la carte service only set menus that come in 3 course (P2,200+), 4 course (2,800+), 5 course (P3,200+) and 6 course (P3,600+) options. All of the set meal options comes with complimentary bread, amuse bouche of truffled scrambled eggs, palate cleanser and cheese course.
We had the 4 course set which meant we could pick 2 appetizers (hot or cold), 1 main course and 1 dessert. The other set menus just means more appetizer options.
They started off our meal with freshly baked bread, a choice of mini baguettes or brioche. Both were really good but I preferred the baguettes while Irene liked the brioche more.
Next was the amuse bouche of Truffled Scrambled Eggs (a signature dish of Chef Gils). I’m not really a fan of dishes with that overuse truffle oils, this one just had the right amount to add aroma and a little flavor to the well made, creamy eggs.
Our quartet of appetizers started with the Burgundy Snails in Garlic and Parsley Butter. Six pieces of tasty escargots swimming in butter and garlic. We actually asked for more bread to dip into the butter.
Cabbage stuffed with Duck Confit in Foie Gras Sauce. Sweet, smoky, flavorful made decadent with a heaping of the foei gras cream sauce. I loved this dish too but the serving size was quite small
Lobster Salad. If the cabbage roll was small, this was positively tiny serving.
Our last appetizer was the French Duck Liver Three Ways. There was a foie gras spring roll, a foie gras terrine and a slice foie gras on top of some tossed greens. I would have preferred they seared the slice of foie gras but overall, this was nothing exciting.
After the appetizers, a palate cleanser placed in a martini glass was next. I had guessed it was a citrus based sorbet of some sort but it had a little surprise. The surprise turned out to be basil oil, which I did not enjoy. I would have preferred the usual citrus sorbet that does the job well.
For my main course, I picked the Grilled US Tenderloin with Morel Sauce, cooked medium. I’ve veered away from tenderloin (my dad still orders this every time) and have more preference for other more exciting beef cuts but this was the only thing on the menu. The cooking was on the money, and it was surprisingly very tender. The morel sauce added a little earthy flavor but good thing it was not swimming in it.
Irene had the Crusted Lamb Tenderloin for her main course. The lamb tenderloin pieces looked liked pieces of p**p but taste wise beats me tenderloin in so many ways. Pinkish in the middle with a nice gamey lamb flavor. I loved both the zucchini gratin and the mashed sweet potatoes, served on the side.
After the main courses, we were served the cheese course. 6 variants of cheese that they make in house. I don’t remember all the variants but there was one covered in Ash, one with Saffron, one Plain cow’s milk, one with rosemary. They were ok but I did not like the one with ash but I’m not really that well versed with cheese.
For dessert we had the Classic French Apple Pie (Tarte Tartin). This was served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Pretty good, not too sweet with still firm apple slices and not mushy.
I picked the Dessert de Gils, named after Chef Gils. This is something that the chef had put together from this and that ingredients in the kitchen, something like and Eton mess. It’s made up of crushed meringue, raspberry sorbet, nougat pieces, strawberries, creme anglaise and berry coulis. This was both a beautiful mess that was also great tasting. The taste profile was more to my liking so I ended up finishing it all by myself, no complaints here. This was my choice for best looking and tasting dessert at Le Jardin.
Le Jardin is expensive and not having an a la carte option really hurts its ability to draw repeat dining (* Just heard that they started ala carte service yesterday). The place is beautiful as is the views of the BGC skyline especially at night with all the lights. Food is pretty good, nothing spectacular but the serving sizes especially of the appetizers are on the smallish side. Other things I did not like are the cutlery and plates, they had the normal catering feel, not really a match to the beautiful place.
Le JardinPenthouse, W 5th 5th ave. cor. 32nd Street Bonifacio Global City, Taguig Philippines Contact No.: (63917) 817- 6584
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