amusing your bouche

A: Amuse-bouche \ˈä- müz-ˈbüsh \ aka entertainment for yo mouth.  IN SHORT: It’s a pre-dinner bite-sized (yet complex) offering from the chef that is a “welcome” to the restaurant. Plus, it’s free.


It’s a ridiculously tiny/cute/adorable/delicious portion of food that serves as a “ello, bonjour, kiss on ze cheek” from the Chef.  Ultimately, it’s a way to showcase their creativity in the kitchen and make a scrumptious first impression.

This “gift” is a freebie usually offered in finer restaurants and is always a welcomed surprise. Mmm. Food.

Also, keep in mind, these little guys are different from hors d’oeuvres (or appetizers as some of you may know them).  They are way more fancy looking, and complex in all the right ways.


Because Chefs have one bite to prove what they’ve got.  And because you’re usually starving.


It’s super french. And translates to “mouth-amuser.”  Part of the Nouvelle (new) cuisine movement, these tiny bites place an emphasis on presentation and are typically delicate-ish.


The dish is often a miniaturized version of an entree.  Neat!  The preparation of these bite-size portions can actually be pretty intensive, sometimes requiring the same amount of attention given to main menu items.

Top Chef Season 7 winner Kevin Sbraga serves this amuse-bouche concoction at his self-titled restaurant “Sbraga” as a introduction to his cooking style. Pictured above is celery flan topped with a chilled lobster salad, compressed celery and dill sprigs. See more Sbraga-isms here (circa 2012). 

Do It Yo-Self!


Spring for some of this undersized deliciousness and serve at your next dinner party.  Bloggers Citron et Vanille put together a simple and classy amuse bouche using scallops, mangoes, and cayenne peppers – all in under 20 minutes. Gotta love when something can be super impressive without too much effort! Cheers to that.