The legendary train is set to rise from the ashes in the form of a mobile pop-up gastronomic restaurant with triple Michelin-starred chef Yannick Alléno at the helm. La Table Orient Express will be calling at stations in Cannes, Paris and Bordeaux, France between May 3 and July 30.
Immortalised by Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express, this most luxurious of trains is steaming back into service this summer. Although it won't be taking passengers to the gateway of the Orient, it's likely to inspire just as much nostalgia and passion, especially among foodies, since its famous blue Pullman carriages will be catering specifically for gourmet diners.
Passengers can step aboard the 38-seat Orient Express dining experience from May 3 and July 30, and enjoy a gourmet meal amid period decor from the train's heyday in the 1920s. This special service will take diners on a three-hour trip, serving up a selection of dishes from chef Yannick Alléno as the scenery goes by.
La Table Orient Express will be starting its culinary voyage on the French Riviera, coinciding with the Cannes International Film Festival, May 2 to 28.
Diners will be served canapés with rose petals, foie gras and a dusting of hazelnut, as well as a Bellevue lobster consommé. Then comes the starter, promising a modern cassolette of demoiselles de Loctudy langoustines cooked in a seawater court-bouillon and with an elderflower fritter. The main is a Pascal Cosnet poularde de Mayenne hen poached in milk spiced with Iranian black lime, cinnamon and cardamom, and served with fine-grain semolina with coriander and sultanas.
Dessert will be the work of Yann Couvreur, former pastry chef at the Prince de Galles luxury hotel in Paris, and who is expected to open his own boutique soon. The young master of desserts will be preparing a meringue nest with Gariguette strawberries and mint, served with vanilla whipped cream. The meal costs €530 (approx. US$602) per person, with an additional €60 (approx. US$68) for specially selected wines to accompany each dish. Tables can be booked online at orient-express.com.
La Table Orient Express rolls into Paris (Gare de l'Est) from June 1 to July 16, before heading to Bordeaux from July 20 to 30.