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Launched last year, the Beijing outpost of the French micro-chain S.T.A.Y. (an acronym for Simple Table Alléno Yannick) at the Shangri-La Hotel manages to stand out in a city that has, in recent years, become a magnet for some of the world’s top chefs. S.T.A.Y.’s attention to detail and focus on creating the ultimate dining experience belies its growing global footprint.
Brian Chan, the designer of S.T.A.Y. Beijing, has deeply incorporated the restaurant’s communal table concept into the ambiance of the space, with large tables and tasteful Lazy Susans allowing for easy access to shared dishes.
At the far end of the large and open, yet cozy restaurant lies a “pastry library” showcasing Couteau’s delightful creations and tempting diners during the Sunday brunch dessert buffet. Extending this tastefulness into localization for Beijing foodies, S.T.A.Y. has incorporated some aspects of Chinese dining culture, including chopsticks.
As for the dishes themselves, Highlights included a fresh, cold and crispy red radish canapé dipped in melted butter with a sea salt garnish, a unique variation that simulated a chocolate-covered strawberry, as well as a delicious breaded and deep-fried gougeonette fish served with homemade tartar sauce.
With S.T.A.Y. Beijing still in its first year, Gilbert feels that, as a foreign chef in Beijing, “you really need to spend one year to understand the seasons and the produce. We know the seasons [and] the produce in France, but every country is not really the same.” Both Gilbert and Couteau are dedicated to incorporating the freshest of local and international products into their creations, importing from around the world.
(By Zandie Brockett Via Jingdaliy)