By Hope S. Philbrick
Ever wonder what “WOW!” tastes like? For answers, book a table at Chanson Restaurant inside the Royal Blues Hotel in Deerfield Beach, Florida.
With Sous Chef Bjoern Eicken currently at the helm, Chanson serves a creative “food of the world” menu with a seasonal emphasis. The focus is on high-quality ingredients from around the world.
Eicken brings ten years of culinary experience to Chanson. He honed his skills at fine dining restaurants in Germany, England and the U.S. Specializing in French and European cuisine, he has overseen some of the top kitchens in the world, including the Relais & Chateaux-affiliated Thomas Henkelmann at the Homestead Inn in Greenwich, Conn., and the Great Hallingbury Manor in Stortford, England. He also served as Demi Chef de Partie at Schuhbecks in den Sudtiroler Stuben, a 1 Michelin Star restaurant in Munich, and apprenticed at the renowned Kafer’s Dachgarten in Berlin. Eicken earned his culinary degree at IHK Berlin and also holds a degree in biology from the University of Potsdam.
He’s also a nice guy with mad food skills.
The restaurant décor is stunning, with a striking saltwater aquarium at the ceiling that’s sandwiched under the pool upstairs. (@21plusTravel Tip: Whenever you’re in the pool, remember that people dining below may be able to see what you’re doing. So behave.) The view outdoors is spectacular as well as the dining room overlooks a patio with palm trees, the beach and ocean beyond. Indoors, the blue and white color palate sets the stage for bright pops of color from flowers, cocktails and food.
The menu is described as “ever-evolving,” shifting with the seasons and chef’s inspirations. Whatever you order, expect to say “wow” after nearly every bite.
While perusing the menu, nosh on treats like house-cured citrus olives and a to-die-for tuna pâté. Trust the bartender to mix up a creative cocktail that is balanced, refreshing and readies the taste buds for food.
The evening of my visit, the tasting menu featured shrimp with beet cocktail sauce, a vegetable terrine, spicy soup, grilled local fish, and beef seared to perfection and served with mushrooms and a tender ravioli. Each course seemed to top its predecessor.
A pre-dessert palate cleanser impressed well beyond the typical sorbet. Eicken presented a layered grapefruit treat with sorbet, custard, mousse and a liquid core.
Don’t miss the signature dessert, deconstructed s’mores. “I’ll never take this off the menu,” says Eicken, crediting a previous Chanson chef for the recipe. “This definitely stays on. I love it.” Indeed, it’s smoky savory sweet goodness, the stuff of dreams.
Chanson is ideal for celebrations, though dining there can also transform a rather blah day into a special occasion.
Odds of Encountering Children: Very very low.
– Photo Credits: Eicken courtesy Victoria King PR; remainder © HSP Media LLC
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