I’ve known that some flowers are edible ever since my Primary 5 science teacher demonstrated how to extract honey from the stamen of the ixora plant. But I’ve never had an entire meal featuring flowers until we lunched at La Taille de Guepe in Antibes. The floral theme is pervasive in this gem of a restaurant, from the walls to the plates.
The 14,50E lunch set, with 6 appetizingly sounding plat and dessert options, was a very good deal. Besides using flowers in the dishes, the restaurant further appeals to the female demography by offering a 550 calorie menu, perfect for those still on their New Year diet regimes.
My fish dish was simply one of the prettiest plates I’ve eaten, with vegetables painstakingly arranged into a fan and flowers adorning the plate. The fish, firm and fleshy, tasted light and delicious too, its tropical tasting coconut and lime sauce pairing brilliantly with the aromatic quinoa, white and black rice mix.
P’s dish was not as photogenic, since it’s difficult to make brown lentils look pretty. But P had no complaints on the taste, the duck meat rosy and tender, the lentils flavorful and not too mushy. We ate the blooms too after Madame introduced each varietal. We sadly forgot their names shortly after though frankly, to us, they all had the same nondescript flavor.
Flowers were also present in our desserts by way of mini purple petals. I ate a silky smooth raspberry panna cotta, less sugary than normal so as to fit into the 550 calorie menu, while the husband ordered a very yummy ile flottante, the fluffy egg-white meringue floating in a rich creme Anglaise delicately flavored with violet extract, a sweet, powdery flavor less potent than rose. Too often, we would leave a restaurant in a food coma. Not at La Taille de Guepe, where we felt we had eaten well without going overboard.
Beautiful plating and healthy and delicious food aside, service was also phenomenal, equal parts friendly, efficient and obliging. For once, we did not need to ask for water refills, and the check was delivered seemingly through telepathy. This was even more surprising given that the proprietress was the only server that afternoon tending to a near full-house of about 20 hungry diners. Now that’s productivity!
La Taille de Guepe
Address: 24 Rue de Fersen 06600 Antibes Juan les Pins, France