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Restaurant Reviews: Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux

In a male-dominated culinary world [1], Bordeaux’s female chef Oxana Ramat is quickly making a name for herself. Following a foray in sustainable product design, this creatively inspired soul discovered her affinity for edible art and studied to become a chef under the helm of Alain Ducasse. Oxana’s passion for combining unique flavours with artful compositions led her to open Le Cromagnon in November 2018, right in the heart of bustling Bordeaux [2].

Chef Oxana Ramat. Photo: G. Bonnaud

The city’s only centrally-based female chef, Oxana expresses emotions through tastes by creating a decorative composition of inventive flavours. Scented with flowers and fruit, signature dishes include red mullet cooked in camellia leaves, lobster with jasmine, and duck with salted cherry Sakura leaves. Another masterful creation is wild tuna tartar with kumquat confit, pan-fried foie gras and almond hummus. Desserts are equally as innovative, with a sweet twist.

Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux. Photo: Kasia Dietz

The seasonal tasting menu for both lunch and dinner at Le Cromagnon changes every two months, with new dishes added as Oxana discovers them. Constantly experimenting, she believes in preserving individual flavours and only combining tastes that complement one another, as surprising as some might be. Watermelon with oysters is one such winning combination. A visual artist as much as a chef, Oxana admits, “You eat the first time with your eyes and later with your mouth; the dishes should surprise.”

Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux. Photo: Kasia Dietz

What makes Moldovan born Oxana Ramat stand out as a chef in France is not merely her sweet and savory melange, or the beauty in which her plates are presented, but the emotional experience she emits through her cooking. One taste of her blossoming cuisine is enough to understand that this impassioned chef is planting deep roots in Bordeaux.

Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux. Photo: Kasia Dietz

Le Cromagnon [3]
48 rue du Palais Gallien, 33000 Bordeaux
Tel: +33 (0)9 80 51 67 03
Dinner served Tuesday to Saturday 7:30-10:30, with starters from 13 euros and main plates from 23 euros. Lunch only on Friday (29 euros), reservations required

Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux. Photo: Kasia Dietz
Le Cromagnon in Bordeaux. Photo: Kasia Dietz
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