Palme d’Or: An Unforgettable Meal
Where elegance and creativity intersect Biltmore Hotel Exterior At the beautiful Biltmore Hotel, guests will find a range of dining options for palates and budgets of all types. But for a flagship dining experience, there’s no question:
Where elegance and creativity intersect
At the beautiful Biltmore Hotel, guests will find a range of dining options for palates and budgets of all types. But for a flagship dining experience, there’s no question: Palme d’Or is unrivaled. At its entrance, the fine French establishment highlights its many accolades—including the prestigious Five Diamond Award—and sets your expectations sky high for the meal to come (and exceeds them easily).
Palme d’Or gives off a distinct white tablecloth impression at first, but there’s no stuffiness to be found. The eatery’s à la carte approach ensures that all diners are welcome. If you feel like just having a few bites, you can. If you’re celebrating a special occasion and feel like splurging, you’re encouraged to go for it.
Offerings at Palme d’Or can be summed up simply as “elegance meets creativity.” You’ll find classic French fare with twists throughout. The menu is divided into three sections—Appetizers, Entrées and Additions—but despite the simple organization, figuring out what to order is hard; it all sounds superb.
Thankfully, the accommodating staff is more than happy to walk you through the menu—and you should certainly let them. Much of the staff has been with the Biltmore for years, and from firsthand experience they know the menu front-to-back. Seriously: Ask them a question, and they’ll rattle off an answer instantly.
Appetizer-wise, you can expect any dish to look like something straight out of a model shoot. Take the Hamachi, for example. With its bright apples, watermelon radish, cucumbers and hearts of palm, it is stunning. The same goes for the Beef Tartare with its capers, shallots and Gherkins. All the little elements on each plate make for magical presentations—and everything tastes magical, too. While the portions are large enough to share, you’re better off ordering one appetizer per person—you’ll likely want to keep each bite for yourself.
Entrée sections are split into The Sea and The Land, where you can expect similar heft and presentation. The Grilled Colorado Lamb Chop with coconut purple potato purée and piquillo peppers packs an ample amount of heat and an abundant amount of flavor. There’s more than enough on the plate for one person, but odds are there will be nothing left once you’re done. Palme d’Or’s branzino might be one of the simpler-sounding items on the menu but looks are deceiving; chili sauce, smoked bacon and pineapple help the dish walk the delicate balance of savory and sweet.
Ending your meal with dessert is a must. Get the cream puff: It’s $14…a small price to pay for enjoying the to-die-for Madagascar vanilla caramel cream.
All in all, Palme d’Or is an exceptional experience. The food commands a premium (rightfully so), but an à la carte menu makes the price tag much more approachable. Rest assured, it’s money well spent—especially for a meal you’ll be talking about well after it’s over.
By Geoffrey Anderson Jr. and Dianne Rubin-Anderson