An Ode to Ori­gins

Provençal- in­spired cui­sine re­turns to Manila’s culi­nary spot­light as Raf­fles Makati opens its new brasserie,

Philippine Tatler - - TATLER FOCUS MIRÈIO -

(Clock­wise from above left) Chef Ni­co­las Ce­gretin and Mirèio’s man­ager Ni­co­las Bracq; The restau­rant’s in­te­ri­ors; Fresh and Smoked Salmon Tartare

In 1859, writer Frédéric Mis­tral penned the cel­e­brated Oc­c­i­tan piece Mirèio. The poem, which shares a name with its tit­u­lar char­ac­ter, tells the story of the for­bid­den ro­mance be­tween a wealthy farmer’s daugh­ter and a mod­est bas­ket weaver. It fol­lows Mirèio as she trav­els to Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer to pray to the saints of Provence for her fa­ther’s change of heart. The piece is Mis­tral’s trib­ute to Provence. The No­bel lau­re­ate loved the re­gion so much that he do­nated his win­nings to the con­struc­tion of the Mu­seum at Ar­les, which houses the finest of Provençal folk art.

Raf­fles Makati’s lat­est ven­ture, a brasseri­estyle restau­rant that serves fine Provençal fare and be­yond, car­ries the same name. Its cui­sine, char­ac­terised by French tech­niques fused with Mediter­ranean in­flu­ences, is de­scribed as sun­drenched (due to Provence’s cli­mate) and cre­ated around the sea­sons. Whole olives and olive oil are key in­gre­di­ents in dishes, dress­ings, and mari­nades, and fresh and dried herbs are used ex­ten­sively for sea­son­ing. At Mirèio, the in­gre­di­ents rather than the tech­niques are high­lighted.

Lo­cated on the ninth floor of the ho­tel, the main restau­rant com­fort­ably seats 77. For small pri­vate

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