The invitation was intriguing: “A comet has landed at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. Come to the hotel at midday on Friday 12 December for a meeting in the dark…”. Who could resist?

Fairmont fantasies for the New Year
On arrival we were taken by the chef into a pitch black room and conga-style wound our way through an enormous ballroom. Bumped up together in a group, we had come to a halt when a spotlight came up on a long narrow table that appeared to be floating in a sea of darkness from which emerged a group of waiters to take our coats.

Clear plastic baubles full of black and white chocolates hung down over the jet black tablecloths and brilliant white plates, creating a stylish, yet simple setting for the visual feast which followed.

Fairmont fantasies for the New Year
Tattinger champagne flowed as we delved into a melee of tastes and textures which were to give us a flavour of what is in store for guests over the New Year. Seafood took centre stage in this culinary play which opened with a wineglass of crab pieces in a delicately salt-sea flavoured cauliflower mouse and Venice caviar. The second scene featured a meltingly soft scallop and cèpe kebab on a bed of grilled cèpes, with a light chestnut cream that complemented without overwhelming the main ingredients.

A rolled sole in a lobster soufflé with clam marinière came on for the second act, but for sheer theatricality the star of the show was the “sun rising on the new year” dessert. Presented on the plate as a plain orange ball, it was actually a white chocolate casing that split open when the waiter poured a hot fruit sauce over it to reveal a concoction of lychees and raspberries doused with saké.

A golden square (carré d’or) of rich dark chocolate on a light biscuit base alighted on our plates before the final curtain fell, and we could cut down our baubles of chocolates to take home.

The Fairmont Monte Carlo has a full programme of activities over the festive season, including dinner on Christmas Eve for 100 euro and lunch on the day itself at 75 euro. On New Year’s Eve you can eat a la carte in the Saphir or enjoy a buffet with half bottle of champagne in the Café de la Mer (220 euro per person), a five-course meal with unlimited champagne (395 euro) or a seven-course feast with unlimited vintage champagne in the Argentin.

Fairmont fantasies for the New Year

Posted by By Claire Lathbury, on Saturday, December 13th 2008 at 11:47 Saturday, December 13th 2008 - 11:47 | Comments (0) Facebook Google + Twitter LinkedIn Digg Google Tape-moi Blinklist Furl Reddit Newsvine Y! Blogmarks Technorati Meneame Viadeo Pinterest Tags : fairmont monte-carlo new year | Permalinks