Brasserie Pascal Bids a Foie Farewell

Get Pascal Olhats' legendary foie gras dinner (but skip the dessert) before it's banned

Take a pass on the scallop dish, which has foie gras inflecting a pan sauce in such undetectable bits that it might as well have not been there at all. The distraction couldn't save the dish on the night I visited. The scallops were woefully overcooked, and the risotto puddles on which it sat tasted lifeless. The better main course was the tournedos Rossini, which featured a filet mignon topped with thin-sliced foie gras that it didn't necessarily need either, but at least both proteins went well with the red-wine reduction, a syrupy concentrate that does the work of a thousand knives in cutting through the decadence.

What disappointed me most about the meal wasn't the food; it was the service. It has slipped precipitously since the last time I reviewed the restaurant. Our entire meal—an appetizer, two main courses and two desserts—took more than two hours to complete on a not-entirely busy night. Our order wasn't taken until 20 minutes after we sat down; the food didn't arrive for another 25 minutes after that. The bread pudding was completely forgotten until I gently reminded our server of it. Her reaction wasn't an apology, but rather, "Oh, my gawd." And when the check came, I was charged separately for that awful dessert when it should've been part of the prix fixe price. Our server blamed the computer for the error. The morning after, I exchanged notes with a co-worker who went to Brasserie Pascal two nights prior. His experience was similar (the servers forgot his soufflé).

As I reflect on that first bite of foie so many years ago, and now that the window for it is seemingly coming to a close, I realize I have it to thank for another first: the first time I logged a complaint with the manager.

Eat it before it's illegal
Johannes Dewald
Eat it before it's illegal
Pictures of bloated geese not included
Johannes Dewald
Pictures of bloated geese not included

Location Info


Brasserie Pascal

327 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Category: Restaurant > European

Region: Newport Beach


Brasserie Pascal, Open for lunch, Mon.-Sat., 11:30 a.m.-5 p.m.; brunch, Sun., 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; dinner, Mon.-Wed., 5-9 p.m.; Thurs.-Sat., 5-10 p.m.; Sun., 5-8:30 p.m. Foie gras three-course menu, $55, food only; à la carte available. Full bar.

This review appeared in print as "A Foie Farewell: Get Pascal Olhats' legendary foie gras dinner (but skip the dessert) at Brasserie Pascal before it's banned."

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