Bar & Boeuf, Monte Carlo

Location

Location

Sporting d'ete, Avenue Princesse-Grace, 98000 Monaco (00 377 92 16 60 60).

View and clientele

Above a pool of greenery, overlooking the Mediterranean, with the fairy- tale, sugar-pink royal palace on the horizon. It's above Jimmy'z nightclub, so don't be surprised to see Puff Daddy and Rod Stewart schmoozing with Luciano Pavarotti and Princess Stephanie. The action starts at 9pm; women on high-rise Manolos clinging to men wearing Ralph Lauren silk shirts. 8/10

Design and service

Alain Ducasse, the other prince of Monte Carlo, has created a steel and glass wonderland. The airy space is punctuated by five majestic red columns. In the middle of the immense terrace, a majestic olive tree is Ducasse's homage to his beloved Provence. Whereas in New York the waiters would be resting actors or mannequins, in Monaco they are simply superb staff. 9/10

Romance factor

Bar & Boeuf was formerly Moana, the restaurant-cum-nightclub where Ari Onassis canoodled with Maria Callas. Since the facelift, the place is now romantic in a subtle, contemporary way. 7/10

Best table

This is Monaco, so they're all the best tables. 7/10

Snoot factor

Bar & Boeuf is based on Spoon, Ducasse's "world cuisine" success in Paris where hoards of "le tout Paris" are refused tables daily. 9/10

Menu

You can have anything you like, as long as it's based on two ingredients: bar (sea-bass) and boeuf (beef). You can ask for any declension of sauces, cooking methods or condiments or do your own thing with the cruet of sauces. 8/10

Wine list

Gerard Margeon, chef-sommelier at Ducasse's eponymous 3-star Michelin Paris restaurant, has created a wine-list to complement the menu. Chardonnay and syrah dominate. 9/10

Price

Dinner for two about FF600 (£62), plus wine. 8/10

Oh yeah, and the food

Lots of dishes are vegetarian friendly (like the tomate & tomates, sliced and marinated in balsamic vinegar, chopped in a tartare with sour cream, and served with a Bloody Mary-based sorbet). Non-vegetarians should start with Coupe rafraichie de broccoletti and caviar oscietra, with slices of raw sea-bass. Desserts, mostly fresh fruit-based, are put together by master patissier Frederic Roberts. 9/10

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