I think the export Apple Contacts to vcf then import in Outlook is the only option.
I added my Office365 accounts to Apple Mail and contacts and have them available all around. Both in Apple Mail (which I still use to get mails to Devonthink easier) and Outlook. Not using Gmail anymore, other than for Google logins.
I think you may be comparing apples to oranges here. Apple’s contact’s app is just a window into contacts that might be stored with one or more cloud accounts, including iCloud (just like Outlook). If you want to access contacts stored in your iCloud account from Outlook, just add iCloud as an account to Outlook. You can then drag your contacts between accounts to put them all in one account or another if that’s your goal.
I use a service called Contacts+ to integrate all my contacts between Outlook and Apple. I’m not sure if you truly needed this, but my set up is slightly different from yours.* I use Apple Contacts for everything, but my office is a Windows shop. I was ending up with a mess of duplicate contacts. I then, deactivated contacts syncing from my office e-mail. The Contacts+ works as the bridge that keeps all my contact databases in sync. I’ve done it for years and have no real problems with it.
The service costs $99 per year.
WIth Outlook on my Mac (as opposed to on my Windows work machine), I’m not sure if it’s pulling contacts from my Apple contacts database or if it’s pulling from Outlook’s contact database. This is why I said I’m not sure if you need to go to these lengths or not.