Carte Blanche Restaurant

9,7 based on 43 reviews
Cuisine(s):
International
Main Course:
$99.00 - $99.00
is:
  • Fine Dining
  • Indoor Dining
Accepts:
  
Meals:
Dinner
Serves:
Ratings & more:
Excellent!
Editors' Pick
Menu(s):

Restaurant Information

Carte Blanche Restaurant

J.E. Irausquin Blvd.330 u
Aruba
Tel: +(297) 586-3339
Opening Hours:
Seating at 7pm
Carte Blanche Restaurant
Carte Blanche is a restaurant for foodies, people who are open minded and enjoy an exquisite fine dining experience, without limitations.

The highlight is Owner/Chef Dennis van Daatselaar cooking a 5-course "Carte Blanche" (chef's surprise) dinner right in front of you.
Alongside the chef is Maitre d' Glen Bonset, pairing wines and mixing premium drinks. The restaurant features a 14-seat elegant bar where guests are seated in a relaxed and cozy atmosphere.
Carte Blanche Restaurant maintains a limited availability of 14 seats per evening to ensure exclusivity of your dining experience with us, and many diners reserve months in advance.


Showing reviews 1 - 10 of 43

Best of the Best.

Aug 11, 2016 - posted by
I'm not going to go on and on about how great this place is. You've heard it all. I will say that if you enjoyed Carte Blanche, try their sister Restaurant Chez Matilda. I'm not sure which was better!
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Fine dining at its best!

Dec 9, 2014 - posted by
My wife and I just returned home from what was our 11th year in Aruba.
We always choose a new restaurant each visit and Carte Blanche was this year.
The entire experience was wonderful.
We were seated purposefully next to guests we did hot know so we would all mingle better.
The service, atmosphere, wine pairing and most importantly the food was impeccable.
If you are open to eating anything and no knowledge ahead of time what will be prepared, in other words, a foodie, this is the place to go.
This is by far our favorite dining experience ever on the island!
We will be returning next year.
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BANNED FOR LIFE

Apr 1, 2014 - posted by
Normally we would not write such a view as you are about to read but, given the position that so many people have with regard to the proprietor of ANNA MARIA'S (which we disagree with regarding ANNA MARIA'S), we feel it to be appropriate to do so.

Story goes like this:

Last year (2013) we had the pleasure of dining here and shortly after returning from Aruba wrote a fairly complimentary review of the place on MARCH 18, 2013 - referring to the place as one of the best and encouraging its patronage. We were critical about a few aspects including, in our opinion, the manner in which they were not as open as they should have been with regard to their drink costs (a matter which they seem to have addressed after we mentioned it), and stating, quite candidly, that, in our opinion, 2 FOOLS was the better of the two establishments.

Several days after posting the review, we (who live in Massachusetts, USA) received a telephone call from CHEF DENNIS (from ARUBA) who was highly critical of our Review and concluded his lengthy diatribe by BANNING US FOR LIFE. So, if, as many of the readers have stated, they do not appreciate similar criticism or comments of the proprietor of ANN MARIA'S and vow to not patronize that place because of that, we wonder how they might feel to know that proprietor of this place engages in similar conduct.

We regret that we were unable to dine at this place this year - but we did not miss it. Instead, we did talk to many people who did frequent it this year and the sense that we got from them was that the food remained good but the variety from one day to the next was not good (one couple told us of their desire to eat here several times during their one week stay only to find that the menu repeated itself to such an extent that they were unable to do so - which also speaks of the possibility of meals or dishes being prepared in advance) and others continued to comment on the extent to which the beverages contributed to their meal tabs.

Because we are BANNED FOR LIFE from this place, we cannot otherwise comment nor can we recommend this place. We welcome all to our EXILE and point out that there are several very fine dining options to this place and encourage all to consider them instead. In our opinion, it is better to eat at ANNA MARIA'S and maybe be passionately criticized then to eat here, write a good review, be (in our opinion) ridiculously criticized, and BANNED FOR LIFE. We have never been BANNED FOR LIFE from any other dining place and regard the matter as a great distinction and honor given its source and manner. Kindly give some consideration to joining us in the bliss of our EXILE from this place. (NOTE: date of our visit reflects when we were discussing the matter with others and notation that we were here for coffee or tea is only because we are required to fill in that blank). It is highly unlikely that we will ever return to this place and we encourage others to consider the same.
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The best dining on the island

Apr 18, 2013 - posted by
This is a special and unique dining experience for foodies. This is adult dining at its finest, no one under 18 allowed. This is a 5 course dining experience, no menu ( but you can let them know of food dislikes or food allergies ahead of time)
The chef, Dennis ( former chef at flying fishbone), will wow you with some of the most creative dishes that you will have ever tasted and, more importantly, you get to watch him prepare it all right in front of you as you are seated around a semicircle table facing his kitchen. The setting is very intimate as you interact with both Chef Dennis and Glenn, who will put together a spectacular wine pairing for the meal. Because of the unique dining situation, you will also get to know some of your fellow diners thru the meal. It really is a full experience as you begin at 7:00 and won't finish until 10:30-11:00. The food is all a surprise until the final second when Dennis plates all of the food for the diners and then explains in great detail about that particular dish. The same occurs for Glenn who will distribute the wine according to the course served and give a full account of that vintage. Trust them both and just let them lead you thru one of the most outstanding food journeys that anyone will ever experience. The wine pairing is a must, as it is optional, but it is tremendous ( and quite a value for the amount and types that you will consume. Remember that you will need to plan ahead and make a reservation in advance as it books up very quickly. Don't this this!
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ONE OF THE BEST

Mar 19, 2013 - posted by


We generally wait to write our reviews after we return from our trips and, in the interim, sometimes some interesting reviews are written which reflect on our experience as well. Such appears to have been the case this year for this restaurant and we were pleased to see the menu described by HF and the disappointing similarity it had to the menu we experienced on a previous night. We tried to go to this restaurant last year and wound up being wait listed and eventually did not get in. This year we booked early and initially were rejected because of some dietary restrictions, we tried again and eased the restrictions and did get in and were very much looking forward to going especially since we had experienced "2 Fools and a Bull" last year and wanted to compare the two.

The concept as we understand it is that a unique five course excellent meal is to be prepared in a small setting environment conducive to interrelating to fellow diners while being catered to and entertained (to a certain minimal degree) by the proprietors and that the meal may be accompanied by optional beverages chosen and suggested by the proprietors. It is a wonderful concept and it is something that we refer to as private dining.

The new setting at the BUCUTI area is designed in the fashion of a large counter area where everyone can view the work being done. That is great and it is entertaining but it interferes with one's ability to communicate with or interact with all of the other participants without shouting across the room. In general, you will wind up conversing with your neighbors and that may or may not work out well on any given night (it was fine with us) and that puts a certain burden on the proprietors to entertain in some fashion. CHEF DENNIS gets very justifiably wrapped up in his preparations and Maitre D'/Sommelier GLENN is left to interact with the crowd except when plates are served at which time DENNIS might participate in explaining them and this all works out fine. The only issue we had with this, other than the inability to interact with some without yelling was that, though beverage options were presented with each course and were attempted to be explained, though we are not experts in the matter, we had reason to question some of the accuracy of what was being stated. Additionally, there is no indication to anyone what the additional cost of the beverages is to be. At 2 Fools the menu is placed on a board and recommended beverages are listed for each course along with prices for the optional beverages - nothing is hidden and nothing becomes a surprise at the end of the evening. Beverages at both places tend to be on the expensive side and can add a substantial amount to any final bill. CAVEAT EMPTOR.

We were told that CHEF DENNIS tends to pre-plate a significant amount of his dishes and we understand why that might be necessary. That did not detract from the meal at all - the food was excellent and we would be remiss to say or even suggest otherwise. The dining experience is excellent as is the overall experience.

Our concerns come in other areas which may seem picky to some, but nonetheless we believe are legitimate concerns. As we were presented with our dishes, it became apparent that, though CHEF DENNIS made a very good effort to accommodate the party with dietary issues, he did not fully do so for an apparent lack of understanding of some of the ingredients he used. Furthermore, we left wondering just how much of the meal was not really unique and this is where the review of HF proves useful - not less than two of the dishes HF experienced were also experienced by us and HF appears to have eaten here only a few days after us. We would have expected greater diversity.

Additionally, despite the effort to entertain, CHEF DENNIS' comprehension of ENGLISH can lead to some interesting, controversial and embarrassing situations. In the group that dined with us there were a number of smokers who occasionally stepped out to satisfy their nicotine
cravings and some discussion turned to that and it became a bit amusing when CHEF DENNIS asked a lady whether she "smokes" or whether she "blows" - thankfully it is an adult setting and everyone had a good laugh especially as Glenn tried to explain the situation to Dennis.

Overall this is a very good dining experience, it is pricey, and you should inquire as to the price of any beverages before indulging. But now comes the question that is on everyone's mind when you discuss Carte Blanche and 2 Fools and that is which is better - in our opinion, both are very good but, for reasons discussed in our review of 2 Fools and herein, our preference is 2 Fools. Which does not mean that we will not be back to Carte Blanche or that we do not encourage everyone to try it - it clearly is one of the better dining experiences in ARUBA and one that should be partaken of by everyone.

Be sure to make reservations early and plan on a 2.5 to 3.5 hour wonderful dining experience. GO AND ENJOY.


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Another wonderful evening with Dennis and Gle

Mar 15, 2013 - posted by
This was my fourth and my husband's third dinner at Carte Blanche, and this might have been the best yet. As always, the food was to die for, the company and service were fabulous, and the evening flew by. One added touch this year was the gluten-free bread Dennis had for my husband. So unexpected, and greatly appreciated! Carte Blanche is not for everyone, and be advised, it is quite pricey, but for those who enjoy a truly unique experience and wonderful food, it can't be beat!
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Great Experience

Feb 24, 2013 - posted by
I was told about this restaurant by my cousin and his new wife. We made standby reservations for Presidents week and was emailed just 2 weeks before with a definite date. After spending 30 minutes trying to find their location and asking countless locals where the restaurant was, we finally found it and was welcomed even though we were late.
We were two couples within a total of 16 people that night. Everyone was very friendly. THe experience began with 3 separate appetizers made by Denis, each matched with a wine that is paired to perfection with the food by Glenn the Sommelier.
Each food was presented beautifully and timely. Each dish is individually prepared in sets to each party so that all those that are together are severed and described to at once. Glenn then pours and describes his paired wine.
Desserts are a choice of two. My wife shared both desserts.
My only suggestion is that get a cab to and from Carte Blanche.
I can't wait to go back!!!
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A must for any Aruba vacation

Dec 24, 2012 - posted by
From the minute you are greeted at the door to the minute you leave full and happy, Carte Blanch is hands down the best experience on the island. Dennis and Glen take great care to organize and prepare everything for their guests in advance. You are well taken care of from the minute you walk into the door and are introduced to your new best friends for the next 3 hours.
You decide on 4 or 5 courses and if you are smart, will include the wine paring with your meal. Everything served is delicious, from the sparkling wine, to the ceviche, to the dessert.
Great atmosphere and Denis and Glen are the perfect hosts throughout the evening with a unique blend of upscale for foodies and casual for those looking to relax. Even have nice music playing in the background (gotta love the Eagles and Barry White).
I highly recommend this restaurant to anyone looking for the perfect compliment to an Aruban vacation and wish them luck in their new location in the new year!!!
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Aruba must do!!!

Dec 22, 2012 - posted by
Carte Blanche is excellent! I have been going to Aruba for over 15 years and this is by far my favorite restaurant. The food is inventive and cooked to perfection, the wine is paired perfectly and both Dennis and Glen make you feel like family. I have eaten there three times and can't wait to go back when I am in Aruba again. The ceviche is to die for!! One of Dennis' specialties. Seriously I can't say enough what a fantastic restuarant not only in Aruba but anywhere. It is one of the coolest dining experiences. Thanks to Dennis and Glen. They are moving to the Bucuti Hotel which is going to just expand on the experience.
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THIS IS A MUST DO!!! NO IF'S ANDS OR BUT'S

Oct 22, 2012 - posted by
I will begin by saying - WOW, WOW & WOW!!!! With that said, there isn't a review or any words that could possibly describe the experience of this place accurately unless you get there in person. Everything about it is outstanding including the 2 stars Dennis & Glen. They work so well together, their personalities, humor and warmth bounce off each other in a way that make you so comfortable, relaxed and really lighten the experience of a very unique and upscale dinner. This is the ultimate in fine dining without the stuffiness of it all, just lots of fun along with excellent food all with a beautiful presentation and absolutely delicious from beginning to end. Prices are not outrageous or ridiculous in any way, we found it to be very fair and have paid much more for much less in NYC - that's for sure.

All of the courses are described in detail by Dennis upon being served and Glen makes a mean Raspberry Martini and his Capuccitini Martini (spelling is probably off on this one but that's because I was cross eyed by the time I was done with it LOL)it is to die for!

It is a very intimate experience, all guests are addressed by first names at all times, you truly feel as if you are dining at their home - and that's a home I'd like to eat at all the time :) It is a total night out, you are not going to be served and rushed out the door, you will be there for a few hours of total bliss. You and your "neighbors" are their only guests for the night and after it's over they personally see you off to say good nite and even chat a bit if you wish. They are both very friendly and open to all questions and all I can say is we cannot wait to get back there.

Carte Blanch has set the bar for dining very high for us - we have talked about that night every night since we were there on October 17, 2012. I wish them nothing but continued success - with all that hard work and personality they so deserve it.

So remember - JUST MAKE THAT RESERVATION AND SEE FOR YOURSELF because you will not be disappointed - but you may get hooked!
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Showing reviews 1 - 10 of 43

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