More Details (and a Menu!) From Adour

We’ve got some new info about the team that will lead the highly anticipated Adour, the restaurant from three-Michelin-starred chef and restaurateur Alain Ducasse scheduled to open this September in downtown DC’s revamped St. Regis hotel. Because Ducasse has upward of 23 restaurants around the world, he’ll likely swing through the kitchen only a few times a year. So who’s he leaving in charge?

The executive chef will be Julien Jouhannaud, who has been with Ducasse’s restaurant group for eight years. The 29-year-old honed his skills at Le Louis XV, Ducasse’s renowned restaurant in Monaco, and went on to help open Mix, his casual outpost in Las Vegas. For the past three years, Jouhannaud was the chef de cuisine at the Harbour Grill in Singapore’s Hilton Hotel.

A familiar local face will be sommelier Ramon Narvaez, who spent six years running the wine program at Marcel’s. At Adour, he’ll maintain a seasonal 500-bottle wine list. Wine Enthusiast magazine gave Narvaez an Award of Unique Distinction in 2005 and 2006, and he has earned Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence every year since 2004. Last year, he became a certified sommelier from the Court of Master Sommeliers in Napa, California.

The Ducasse group pulled another homegrown talent, Fabrice Bendano, to oversee the pastry department. He has worked in an impressive number of Michelin-starred restaurants, including the celebrated Taillevent in his native Paris. Bendano started in DC as the pastry chef at Les Halles in 1999 and then worked under Michel Richard at Citronelle. In 2001, he began a five-year stint at Bistrot du Coin, and most recently he worked as executive pastry chef at 1789.

So what does the very preliminary, very early version of the dinner menu look like? Read on. Dishes are subject to change.


Adour Dinner


Pressed organic chicken and foie gras, black-truffle condiment, baby leeks vinaigrette

Brocolis cappuccino, fresh ricotta cheese, gently cooked garden vegetables

Chilled Maine lobster médaillons, wild greens/herbs, “crudités en copeaux,” natural coral vinaigrette

Cucumber-marinated hamachi, radish, green-apple mustard

Seared foie gras, dates marmalade, and preserved lemon confit

Tender ricotta gnocchi, sautéed lettuce, crispy prosciutto, Xeres vinegar jus

Root-vegetable mosaic, beetroot essence


Russian Malossol Osetra (1.76 ounces)
Caspian Golden Osetra (1.76 ounces)
Buckwheat blinis, crème fraîche

Main Courses

Roasted Maine lobster with salsify and spinach, Mediterranean-style “jus de presse

Olive-oil-poached Gloucester cod, bell-pepper/white-onion “piperade,” espelette jus

Baked striped bass, duo of half confit tomatoes, balsamic reduction, lemon zest and capers, natural cooking jus

Steamed halibut with assorted green vegetables, veal blanquette ivory sauce

Diver day-boat scallops Grenobloise style with cauliflower cream

Black Angus beef and carrots: seared tenderloin with sauce Velours and slow-cooked short rib

Roasted Pennsylvania rack or lamb, piquillos, confit apricots, creamy quinoa

Duck-breast filet “au sautoir,” polenta, confit shallots, radish, Niçoise olives

Roasted pigeon breast with Yukon potatoes and seared foie gras, salmis sauce

Veal sweetbread meunière, ragoût of Swiss chard with fresh lemon, reduction jus


Gala-apple soufflé, Granny Smith compote, Calvados ladyfinger, vanilla ice cream

Rhubarb & strawberry, buttermilk panna cotta, bostock brioche


Exotic Vacherin

Bitter-grapefruit, raspberry-custard, rose-blossom ice cream

Armagnac baba, light whipped cream

Gianduja “sablé,” milk chocolate, bitter orange zest, marmalade/sauce

Dark-chocolate sorbet, coffee granité, caramelized brioche croutons


The Wrap-Up: The Week in Food 

More>> Best Bites Blog | Food & Dining | Restaurant Finder