Quisine by Guy Savoy

Excellent French restaurant on the Pearl-Qatar Discuss this article

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We have to pry our reviewers away from the table to get them to leave this fancy French restaurant.

If we had to pick one restaurant in the city to eat at for the rest of our lives, this one would be a top contender. It would take a really, really, really long time for us to get sick of their artichoke soup with truffles. Not to mention the mushroom brioche they pair it with (yes, this place pairs each course with special bread. There’s a cart. And a bread waiter. Seriously). This is over the top at its finest, but weirdly we don’t feel overwhelmed by it. This may be because the place is pretty much empty when we go: which is a shame, if people aren’t diving headfirst into their food simply because they can’t offer a glass of vino. They will offer you some of the tastiest food to every grace our forks, so get over it already.

Anyway, it may not be getting the widespread love it deserves, but that’s ok Quisine, we will snuggle you in our arms as much as you like, if you keep dishing up that soup. Shh, shh, it’s ok; we’re here now.

The place is sleek with gorgeous views from the wide windows and a flickering fire place. Our one quibble: what is up with the depressing art? They’ve got a local artist’s work on the walls that’s a bit. . . puzzling.

Does this artist have some issues we should be aware of? Because they’re all black and white and we’re pretty sure that’s a kidney (or maybe a grenade: seriously, we’re worried about this person’s mental health) on the one opposite our table. It’s grim. Can we maybe get, oh I don’t know, a nice landscape or even just a splash of colour guys? The food and I are both a little scared by this. And one mustn’t scare one’s food.

Thankfully we’re distracted from the art by what’s going on on our plates. Before our starters even arrive we’re presented with gorgeous mocktails and that bread trolley, with recommendations for each course.

Then comes the first little nibble, this one a tiny thimble of soup. We’re instructed to push the seasoning in with our thumb, then flip the cup: underneath we’ll find a tiny surprise. It’s all theater and we’re not even at our actual food yet! When that arrives, it’s time for conversation to stop as we’re going about the business of not drooling on ourselves. The artichoke soup, oh my gosh, the artichoke soup. Studded with slices of truffle, it comes with mushroom brioche we’re instructed to use to sop it up. And sop it up we do, every tangy, creamy, amazing mouthful. Happiness. Right here. This guy.

After another round of fun little nibbles, our mains arrive. But wait, this isn’t our mains: this is a super surprising fish course the chef has sent out, just for giggles. It’s a whole fish for each of us, small but mighty, atop a bed of deliciously seasoned greens surrounded by tiny button mushrooms that make us rethink what we’ve thought a mushroom should taste like all our lives. My friend is not a fish eater. My friend eats every morsel for this wonderfully meaty, delicate fish.

Then, our actual mains arrive. Now, do not be afraid: they are doing things here with offal. And pigeon. And other old fashioned flavours. Just order and enjoy! This is the place to take a chance, if you’re ever going to. I get the veal knuckle with truffle mashed potatoes and vegetables, carved tableside (they just can’t resist). My friend gets the quail done three ways. Mine is an absolutely heaving plate of yummy fantastic smells. I would like to bottle the smell of that meat and wear it always. My friend’s is a smaller, more compact plate featuring, among other things, a roulade of quail and ravioli of quail. The quail is dense and beautifully seasoned, special and wonderful. My veal is now and forever more what beef should taste like, for me. Slow cooked so you don’t even need a knife, it’s presented in a simple, luscious sauce. I don’t even get why they bother putting salt and pepper on the table: it is seasoned perfectly, to add anything would be sacrilege.

A note: this is not a restaurant for conversation. Yes, the atmosphere is romantic and gorgeous, the service attentive yet refined, but you will be too busy stuffing your face to talk. The only sounds will be nummy noises. Moans of delight. Slurping.

Stuffed and barely able to move, we must have dessert. Why? Because if we thought the rest was theatre, the best is yet to come. The all black for me, the raspberry almond duo for my friend. The raspberry is fresh, light, refreshing, amazing. The all black, a layered chocolate creation that’s not a cake, not a mousse, not a brownie but rather all things good and rich and chocolate, topped with dark chocolate sorbet, is the opposite. They are both so good there’s a serious lack of sharing.

But we’re not done yet—oh no. Next is the dessert trolley, with homemade macaroons, marshmallows, sorbets and a selection of puddings and desserts. Do not, under any circumstances, decide you’re too full for the chocolate mousse or the rice pudding. No. You are not allowed. Eat the pudding and be quiet (you will thank us later). As we’re trying to find a tiny bit of space for that last portion, that last wafer thin mint, the tea trolley arrives. This is more than tea: this is whole plants (which the manager shows us he grows on the balcony, watering daily), where they will pick fresh leaves to add to your mix. I go for the chocolate mint, my friend for the lemon thyme. It’s the perfect end to what is probably the perfect meal. This is the place if you are celebrating, showing off, or just in the mood for what French food is really all about. Quisine, will you marry us?

The bill (for two)
2x Artichoke soup QR440
1x Veal knuckle QR385
1x Quail QR300
1x All black QR95
1x Raspberry almond duo QR95
1x Evian QR30
Total QR1345

By Time Out Doha staff
Time Out Doha,

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: The Pearl-Qatar, Doha
  • Tel: 4002 7245
  • Travel: Parcel 4, La Croisette 7 Porto Arabia
  • Website | Send mail
  • Cuisine: French
  • Times: Open Mon-Sat 7pm-10pm
  • Price: QR500+

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