Alum of Michelin-starred Spruce is opening a French-Korean bar in Cupertino


The South Bay is getting a new Korean-inspired bar and restaurant this month, where a fine dining chef plays with Korean ingredients and French techniques to create dishes such as a kimchi buckwheat crepe.

Bar Bonmot will open in early November at the Residence Inn by Marriott hotel at 19429 Stevens Creek Blvd. in Cupertino, inside the former Gentry Bar & Eatery space. Debuting with dinner Thursday through Saturday only, the restaurant will eventually expand to offer lunch and dinner daily.

Chef James Lim, who’s cooked at Michelin-starred restaurants including Spruce and the now-closed Mosu in San Francisco and Providence in Los Angeles, is behind the menu here. A Korean native who grew up in Los Angeles, the bar and restaurant is a distillation of his heritage and years in high-end kitchens. Take the smoked date and potato puree topped with crispy perilla and candied anchovies. The puree pulls from French technique, while the perilla leaves and baby anchovies are ingredients commonly found in Korean cooking. It will also be served with a sourdough focaccia glazed in preserved pumpkin syrup, the latter a classic Korean flavor.

Other dishes will include that crepe filled with house-made kimchi and crispy tofu, plated over a soybean cream. Because it’s a bar, there will be finger foods like crispy pork ribs glazed in a banana gochujang sauce.

A buckwheat crepe stuffed with kimchi from Bar Bonmot in Cupertino.

A buckwheat crepe stuffed with kimchi from Bar Bonmot in Cupertino.

Courtesy Albert Law

Drinks are distinctly Korean as well, like the bar’s take on a dirty martini, made with the juice of dongchimi (radish water kimchi) instead of olive brine, or a whiskey highball featuring barley tea and soju.

This may be a hotel bar, but dessert isn’t an afterthought. Think slightly earthy ice cream made from burdock root and soymilk, drizzled with aged date syrup. A sweet potato chiffon cake comes encased in a burnished, deep orange shell that mimics the skin of a sweet potato. All of the food will be served on ceramic tableware made by Lim and his wife, from a striking dark blue plate to a jet-black bowl shaped like an open tulip.

“It’s a very personal experience that we’re trying to show to our guests,” he said.

Bar Bonmot’s sweet potato chiffon cake with creme fraiche mousse.

Bar Bonmot’s sweet potato chiffon cake with creme fraiche mousse.

Courtesy Albert Law

Bar Bonmot joins a growing wave of restaurants defying the stereotype about the Bay Area’s lacking Korean dining scene. And demand is high: San Ho Won, the much-anticipated Korean barbecue spot from Benu chef Corey Lee, opened this week to nearly sold-out reservations. San Francisco’s wildly popular Daeho Kalbijjim & Beef Soup, where there’s often a long wait, is expanding to San Mateo and plans to open even more locations in the Bay Area.

While Lim grew up surrounded by an abundance of Korean food in Los Angeles, he said it feels like momentum is building in the Bay Area with “more interest in Korean culture and food.”

“It’s a good thing to see,” he said.


Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.