Archive for the 'Petrossian- Giselle Wellman' Category


It has been quite a while since we have been back to Petrossian. Chef Giselle Wellman was as gracious and welcoming as always.

We started with the Caviar Flight tasting – expensive but quite an education in caviar.

This is presented without accompaniments so that you are truly educated as to each different type of caviar – our server explained in depth the different properties of each caviar. I would only do this once as it is truly just a tasting of caviar.

From left to right:

Trout Roe – Western France – Medium sized grains exude a crisp, briny tang

Pike Roe – France – Small grained, golden in color with a mild delicate taste

Salmon Roe – North Atlantic – Large firm bead with juicy sweetness

Chataluga Prestige – Tennessee River valley – Wild caught, small firm grey beads, strong briny notes

American Hackleback – Tennessee River Valley – Wild caught, small black beads, bright and fresh briny notes

Royal Transmontanus – Northern California – Medium sized bead with lighter tones of warm brown, nutty and buttery in flavor (C grade)

Tsar Imperial Transmontanus – Northern california – Medium sized bead with tones of warm browns to dark grey, botth smooth and robust (B grade)

Shassetra – China- Firm medium sized beads with a flavor that hints of dry fruit and toasted grains

Tsar Imperial Siberian – Florida – Firm, smallish to medium sized black beads, fresh taste of sea

Tsar Imperial Ossetra – Bulgaria – Nutty flavor and firm juicy grains ranging in color from a light to a warm, rich brown

Kaluga – China- Glossy grey grains shimmer with golden highlights, spectacular in size, mellow, rich buttery flavor – the most expensive and my favorite!

Egg Royale – soft scrambled egg, vodka whipped cream, caviar

Inside of the Egg Royale

Smoked Trout, asparagus, lemon, dill, creme fraiche, pickled red onion, rainbow trout roe, rye toast points – This is Chef Wellman’s “take on a Jewish deli” i.e rye bread, creme fraiche for sour cream, pickled red onion, smoked trout

Boulder Valley Bone marrow, rosemary, thyme, garlic, crostini, sweet onion jam

Napoleon Tartare, prime flat iron steak, capers, shallots, chives, caviar

A lovely late lunch!


It has been quite a while since we have been to Petrossian. Giselle Wellman, the chef  is committed to excellence in execution as well as to the quality of her ingredients. We like going for a late lunch/early dinner.

Chef Wellman

The front of the house team is superb.

Christopher Klapp, GM

Melissa, our wonderful server

The room has been updated with lovely paintings – this  is civilized dining in a serene atmosphere

Even the ice bucket is elegant

BYO Champagne

Blinis with Caviar and Salmon Roe

Egg Royale – Scrambled Egg, Vodka Whipped Cream, Caviar

Inside of the Egg Royale

On a toasted brioche, soft poached egg covered by a sheet of Papierusse – a gelatin sheet of pressed caviar

The packaged papierusse

Foie Gras Ravioli, Grapes, Walnuts, Wild Mushrooms, Noble XO Vinegar

BYO Champagne

Caviar Powder (You can buy the powder in Petrossian’s boutique – we did)

Caviar Pasta – The caviar powder is worked into the pasta dough, the saucing is creme fraiche and chives and then the caviar powder is ground on top

Duck Confit Salad, Farmer’s Market Apples, Watercress, Candied Hazelnuts, Champagne Vinaigrette

A lovely and serene dining experience with excellent food prepared with finesse.


Petrossian for a late lunch/early dinner is lovely. As there are very few diners at that hour, we get to really chat with the Chef and we can leisurely enjoy our meal.

BYO Champagne

Petrossian room

Chef Giselle Wellman – what a wonderful person. I love chatting with Chef Wellman and she is most gracious to even take our order!

Egg Royale – Scrambled Egg, Vodka Whipped Cream, Caviar – an old favorite and as good as ever.

First a dish is presented with Dungeness Crab, Fennel, Cherry Tomato, Serrano Chili, Avocado and Lime

Then hot sweet corn soup is poured on.

The finished dish – what is remarkable about the soup is that it made without cream or butter although it is very intense and rich tasting. It is made by slowly simmering corn cobs in water – this is an idea that I intend to steal.

Squid Ink Fettucini, Wild California Sea Urchin, Curry, Salmon Roe – to be honest I am spoiled by the quality of sea urchin served at Urasawa so this dish suffered when comparing Urasawa’s spectacular sea urchin with Petrossian’s sea urchin; perhaps this is an unfair comparison given that Urasawa is the best sushi experience in Los Angeles with unparalleled fish.

BYO White Wine – one of our favorites

Back of the bottle of the white wine

Striped Bass, Yukon Gold Potato Noodles, Vodka Creme Fraiche, Chives, Caviar –  another old favorite executed perfectly.

Prime Beef Burger, 2 Year Aged Cheddar, Cipollini Jam, Bacon, Chilies, Arugula, Lemon Aioli, French Fries – a truly gourmet burger. Notice the container for the ketchup!

What could be better than to spend a late afternoon drinking great wine and dining on ingredient driven cuisine executed with passion and dedication?


Petrossian was absolutely perfect Saturday afternoon – wonderful food, gracious service – over-all an “over and above” experience.

The lovely room

The 1996 Roederer Champagne was fantastic – BYO

The Chandon was nice – also BYO

Christopher Klapp, GM and Giselle Wellman, executive chef

A first for us – Giselle giving us advice and then writing up our order!

Egg Royal – Scrambled Egg, Vodka Whipped Cream, Caviar with a Chive flower on top – great as always – a favorite

Blinis with Creme Fraiche and topped with Caviar, Trout Roe and Salmon Roe

Caviar Salad – Butter Lettuce, Shaved Egg, Shallots, Chives, Parsley, Lemon Dill, Creme Fraiche

Another view of the caviar salad – we decided to forgo forks and used each butter lettuce leaf separately as a fold-up lettuce “sandwich” containing each component – another winner.

Truffle Agnolotti – the agnolotti is stuffed with fontina and truffles topped by prosciutto and baby asparagus, parmesan foam on the side  -Giselle explained that when she started as the new chef at Petrossian, she had discovered an overabundance of truffles. Not wanting to waste them, she froze them and then came up with the idea of first infusing the truffles with milk, brought to the boil and then she added the truffles to the fontina which she had made into a fondue.  The resulting “stuffing” was absolutely delicious as well as ingenious.

Live Spot Prawns had been quickly sauteed served with rich avocado mousse (not pictured as under the head), yuzu and a tiny dice of Mango and Tomato salad (not pictured as under the rear spot prawn). We ate every single bit – my favorite part being the head.

Striped Bass, Yukon Gold Potato Noodles, Vodka Creme Fraiche, Chive, Caviar – I love this dish – each component was perfectly executed

Roasted Jidori Chicken, Gnocchi, Peas, Pea Shoots, Artichokes, Thyme, Lemon – I really wanted to try this chicken dish, but I was getting very full. I was about to order this to go, but Giselle persuaded me that she would give me the components and instructions on how to make it at home the following night.

What follows is the at home version of the Jidori Chicken.

Saute the gnocchi in grapeseed oil, add the roasted artichokes and briefly saute.

At the end, add the peas to the above mixture and very, very briefly just let them warm – do not overcook.

Roast the chicken at 350 for about 4 minutes per side – you are just warming.

Put the pea tendrils in a separate bowl. Pour the warm gnocchi, artichoke mixture over the tendrils

Add to the salad according to taste.

Warm up pea sauce and serve on the side.

Now, I guess you want to know what happened ……..

It was delicious and although my plating probably isn’t up to her standards, each ingredient was just perfect and there was no way I could mess up.

Bottom line:  Petrossian is a wonderful experience with special people who are both committed and passionate about what they do. This is a must restaurant for those who truly love cuisine.


I consider our last meal at Petrossian one of miscommunication between us and the Chef. We were told that Chef Wellman especially wanted us to have the chicken dish and the duck dish. We ordered the egg royale with the intention of adding a number of small intermediate courses until the chicken and duck was served. After the egg dish we had a special melon salad and then immediately following that our two main entrees. Our plans to have a long leisurely meal of numerous small dishes obviously didn’t happen. Next time, I think we will compose our own menu, asking Chef Wellman what special dishes she suggests we add.

The room as pretty and serene as always

BYO First Champagne

Egg Royale – A hallowed out eggshell filled with soft Scrambled Egg and topped with Vodka Creme Fraiche and Caviar – excellent and a great beginning

Melon Spring Salad – Grapefruit, Mache, Proscuitto, Pinenuts, Homemade Ricotta dressed with 2 different types off Noble Vinegar – this was lovely and fresh tasting with a great nod to seasonality

The Noble Vinegar is distributed by Mikuni Wild Harvest. From their site:

(On the right) “Noble Tonic 04 French Orleans White Wine Vinegar infused with Egyptian Heirloom Organic Lemon peel. Noble Tonic 04 maintains a 6% acidity and is characterized by its smooth, bright, sweet, citrus tones. Noble uses a 5-year oak barrel aged Orleans White Wine Vinegar as the canvas for this delicate and versatile product. The Pharaoh’s (Egyptian) Heirloom Lemon is similar to a Meyer Lemon in sugar content, but has much more nuance and character. It’s sweet and intensely spicy with hints of orange peel and cedar.”

(On the left) “Noble Tonic 05: XO, a refined finishing vinegar, Noble Tonic 05 is the result of an extended aging process of Noble Tonic 03. The extended maturing period for this vinegar results in an all-natural reduction of water, allowing the rich and bold flavors of Sherry, Bourbon, Maple, Oak, Vanilla and Caramel to become deep and concentrated.”

BYO Champagne #2

I just wasn’t expecting to go right to our main courses at this point. It was just too abrupt a transition to the main part of the meal.

Jidori chicken, housemade butternut squash ravioli, arugula salad, black truffle sauce – the crunchy skin on the chicken was perfect

Duck, Honey Orange Glace, Parsnip puree, orange segments and spice crumble – well-executed

Almond Creme Brulee with Almond cookies or also known as Russian Tea cookies – my husband gobbled down the creme brulee