Co-owner Maguy Le Coze traces the roots of Le Bernardin’s culinary “simplicity” to her late brother, Gilbert, the restaurant’s legendary co-founder and first chef: “Gilbert was not a classically trained chef,” she says. “He had never been to culinary school. When he cooked, he made things he liked, and things he knew. He focused on the quality and freshness of the fish. He made nages and vinaigrettes because he’d never made a hollandaise or a béarnaise. He focused on flavors that were delicate, subtle, herb-infused.”
Today, Chef Eric Ripert carries on the tradition with simple but nuanced dishes such as Poached Halibut on Marinated Vegetables, Pan-Roasted Grouper with Wild Mushrooms and Artichokes, and Grilled Salmon with Mushroom Vinaigrette. And of course, desserts—from Chocolate Millefeuille to Honeyed Pear and Almond Cream tarts. Four Star Simplicity offers 100 meticulously formulated and carefully tested recipes, from appetizers through dessert.
Much like the experience of dining at Le Bernardin, essential to the Le Bernardin Cookbook are the dynamic and charming Maguy Le Coze and Eric Ripert, whose lively dialogue and colorful anecdotes shine from these pages as brightly as the recipes themselves.