Milla’s Paris: Cooking at L’École Ritz Escoffier

The name says it all – The Ritz Paris. Wow. I’ve walked through Place Vendôme so many times and wondered just what was behind those stunning doors. It is one of the most famous hotels in the world and as I experienced earlier this month, it takes luxury to an entire new level. Travel Onion invited myself and several other bloggers to a cooking event at the École Ritz Escoffier, and I couldn’t wait to get into my chef whites – watch out kitchen!

Our event started with a tour of the Imperial Suite, a 200-square metre space complete with two bedrooms available to you all at 13,000€ per night. From the astoundingly high ceilings to the rich opulent tones, this suite screams French royalty and was indeed inspired by the Louis XIV era. The sprawling space is ridiculously comfortable – those red chairs complete with gold embroidery should come with a “you will not want to move” warning. Now I know understand why my fellow Brit Winston Churchill enjoyed this suite.

Modelled on Marie-Antoinette’s bedroom, one of the decadent bedrooms really is fit for the queen. With the perfect view overlooking the historic Place Vendôme and a shopper’s paradise: Chanel, Boucheron and Charvet to name but a few. As nice as the bedroom is, it was the bathroom which captivated me. Can you imagine lazing is this bath-tub, glass of champagne to your left as you read a copy of Vogue Paris cover to cover? I can but unfortunately, at 13,000€ per night, my imagination is all I have.

As we made our way down to ‘our’ kitchen, we stopped by the main kitchen only to discover that all food is prepared here – pastry, chocolate, bread et al – 24/7. Gourmet room service at the press of a button, all from Marie-Antoinette’s bath tub… Yes, still dreaming! Our chef, Mr Didier Steudler is not only a great teacher, but also a very personable teacher. Look, we were at The Ritz and we were about to cook, not only in front of our fellow bloggers, but in a Ritz kitchen. Er, intimidating! Chef Steudler put us at ease and made everything very clear.


Our first mission was the preparation of the starter: Confit tomato tart, baby arugula, grated parmesan cheese and smoked ham. Who knew such a delicious and beautifully presented dish could be so simple? If you come over to my apartment for supper, don’t be surprised if I serve this. Perfectly light, tasty, pretty and you don’t have to spend hours in the kitchen. You can obviously omit the ham from the recipe as one of my fellow blogettes did et voilà, you have a scrumptious vegetarian dish.

I was a vegetarian for 10 years. Not one of those fake ones who eat fish and white meat, a real I-don’t-eat-anything-with-a-face vegetarian, and though that is no longer the case (sashimi is my friend), I have never liked the texture of meat. Up until this month, I’d never even tasted veal but we were cooking “sage-infused veal medallions with potato and celeraic gratin”, so why not! The meat was so tender, the mustard sauce divine but that perfect, succulent veal is hard to get over. The gratin full of butter, cream, milk and cheese was sublime and I cannot wait to make at home but what did I think about the politically incorrect veal? Sorry vegetarians but I beeping loved it! Culinary bliss.

Cooking classes are always fun, particularly the eating part. What attracts me most l’école Ritz Escoffieur is that you’re not just cooking with the best, but within The Ritz building itself. What a wonderful experience, which I will treasure. A big merci beaucoup to the Travel Onion team, chef Steudler and of course, The Stephanies who put the event together.

École Ritz Escoffier, Hotel Ritz Paris, 15 Place Vendôme, +33 (0) 1 43 16 30 30

Milla’s note: Whilst we ate dinner at The Ritz Paris, which we cooked ourselves (and some people burnt but no names…), these are my own opinions for which I have received no monetary compensation.

26 Comments

    • Milla
      Author
      20 March 2011 / 17:28

      It was so much fun and you know, it wasn’t really about being a great cook; it was the experience of learning something new (also the other bloggers were fab to hang out with).

      The bathtub… I know!

      x

  1. 20 March 2011 / 15:56

    How amazing it is to be cooking at The Ritz! It’s something I’d definitely remember for the rest of my life.

    Btw even if I can AFFORD staying in €13,000 suite, I’d be too afraid to touch anything (even the bed) because I know that the furnishings cost more than that :/

    • Milla
      Author
      20 March 2011 / 17:27

      Oh no Aggie, I wouldn’t! At 13,000€ I’d be acting as if I owned the place! Haha : )

      It was as wonderful as it looked!

      x

  2. 20 March 2011 / 20:43

    How cool is this! Now I’m looking even more forward to having dinner at your house 😉

    Bisous!
    Le Choix Trois

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:40

      You come, you cook! Hehe, just kidding! It was really interesting and so French!

      x

  3. 20 March 2011 / 21:08

    Oh wow, beautiful hotel, I want to imagine being in there for at least one night…perfect. The cooking class looks like so much.. You were vegetarian for 10 YEARS…..WOW, no wonder you look amazing. I don’t know if i could do vegetarian, it seems like it needs a lot of discipline.

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:39

      Thank you Stylemefab, you’re sweet! I just prefer veggie food – tastes nicer 🙂

      x

  4. 21 March 2011 / 06:25

    What a fabulous opportunity, Milla! I have a thing for beautiful hotels … I really do. I’ve thought of making them the subject of a series of paintings. This must have been not only fun but fascinating! Lucky girl! Happy Spring, Milla! xo

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:36

      Oh Sandy, you must! I can imagine how beautiful your girls would look at the Ritz Paris… : )

      Happy Spring!

      x

  5. 21 March 2011 / 18:11

    oooohhh, this looks both FUN AND TASTY! Luckily am just making (crustless) quiche so my apetite will be sattisfies.
    Though only thing am thinking now is veal… tmrw! 😀
    M

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:15

      Did you have the veal M? Had you tried it before? It was insanely nice. Usually I don’t eat meat because I don’t like the texture but this almost melted in my mouth.

      x

  6. 21 March 2011 / 18:57

    The experience of a life time Milla! Thanks for a look inside the bedrooms and kitchen of the most famous hotel in the world! This event really shows the power and influence of blogging.
    Cupcake
    xo

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:12

      It really was. Not just to go there, but to cook and see inside the world’s most famous hotel. Sometimes I really have to stop and count my blessings.

      x

  7. 21 March 2011 / 22:41

    What an incredible opportunity! That suite is just ridiculous. I’d like to know how often it’s occupied and who stays there. As for the veal, don’t feel too bad. I love it, too. Sometimes, you just have to forget about what you’re eating and enjoy it!

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:11

      13k€ worth of ridiculous. Ritz = luxury! Since it was unoccupied, we were hoping to stay over but alas, we had to get cooking! Yes, dreamland : )

  8. 21 March 2011 / 22:56

    i took a cocktail class at the Ritz once but haven’t had the cooking class experience there. thanks for the good run down. Looks like a fun evening was had by everyone…i’d heard about from a few bloggers pals so have been waiting for someone to write up so I could see what everyone got up to!

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:06

      I saw that class on the site and was thinking of you! How perfect for you : )

      It was really fun, and such an interesting group of bloggers.

      See you soon!

      M

  9. 22 March 2011 / 06:24

    This is like my DREAM! I would love to be able to experience this! BUT not in Arizona. I want to be in the Ritz Paris! I want to smell the smell! I want to feel the texture! GAH! I’m dying here!!!!

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:03

      Oh bless you! Come to Paris already! Staying at the Ritz is seriously expensive but cocktails one evening sound good, right?

  10. 25 March 2011 / 00:02

    wow thats just amazing :)and I hope we can see some new dishes on your blog very soon! Amazing experiance! xx
    stylebyjblog.blogspot.com

    • Milla
      Author
      29 March 2011 / 11:02

      I sure hope to learn from my experience and get cooking!

  11. 27 March 2011 / 00:56

    What a wonderful experience Milla, you’re so lucky! Aaaah I love palaces. I can’t wait for the day I might be able to afford staying in them 😉

    • Milla
      Author
      28 March 2011 / 15:29

      Oh it was amazing Anne! The Ritz was everything a girl dreams of, though I too am wishing I could afford to stay there overnight!

      I haven’t been inside Versailles for many years, must visit there this summer.

  12. 31 March 2011 / 14:49

    I’m going to Paris in just over a month. Just loved reading about your experience:)

    • Milla
      Author
      2 April 2011 / 10:18

      That’s so cool! Is it your first trip? What do you have planned? How long will you be here?
      x

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