Julien Bompard at Ascott

This restaurant by the celebrated chef Julien Bompard of Le Saint Julien offers a menu that is more Spanish and Italian, than French. Items like paella, Iberico ham, a selection of tapas as a middle course, and the use of olive oil in its dessert attest to its Mediterranean leanings. It positions itself as a fine dining establishment, and its wine by the glass and exclusive location match this image. Unfortunately, the food does not. Our mesclun of salad and herbs with Parma ham and Portobello mushrooms was so lackluster that it seemed like something we could have whipped up ourselves, and the capellini pasta with stewed duck and foie gras with black truffle tasted very ordinary. However, our desserts of chilled apple tart with hazelnut praline and Nyon olive oil with creme glacee; and chocolate dome Provencal with almond paste and berries were unique and delicious enough to save the day. We’re hoping they’ll shape up by the time we pop by again.