With Audrey’s birthday coming up, it was again another girlie lunch catch up. This time Audrey picked Bouchard for our lunch and what a wonderful choice it was.
Bouchard is in a well hidden spot close to a vehicular cul-de-sac and the street the restaurant is on is lined with trees and high rise (10 storeys still seems tall for an apartment, in sleepy Perth) accommodation. Bouchard does well doing a quite convincing and welcome impersonation of a French Bistro.
A small, simple but elegant space, split between inside and out. For the last year or more, Sebastien Bouchard’s bistro on the edge of the CBD as it climbs towards Kings Park has been the subject of some very positive word of mouth.
It has been adapted to fit into part of the ground floor of an apartment block, but this doesn’t prevent it from taking on the feel of casually smart and elegant restaurant, especially at night. In the day, take a drink at the bar or the outside terrace and enjoy the river views.
There is beer on tap, a good range of cocktails and a thoughtfully compiled wine list. Head chef Todd Stuart’s food is complex and arrestingly presented.
Being on a Saturday, the restaurant was rather quiet for lunch. I’ve been on a weekday and it is packed with the city lunch crowd. There is the option of ala carte menu or a choice of 2 courses for $45 or courses for $55. We decided to go with the ala carte menu for our lunch.
We did start with some warm crusty white and light rye bread with butter which were yummy. The four of us decided quickly that we’ll skip entrées and go with mains and deserts.
Mei & I ordered the same dish for our mains which were the roast rib of beef with Dauphinoise potato, roasted root vegetables, shallot tatin, parsley and snail & truffle sauce. The beef was perfectly cooked as I wanted mine medium. It was tender and sweet and I loved the shallot tatin which is basically a tart made with shallots which gives the tart a real sweetness to it. The snails that were out of their shells were cooked to perfection and not chewy at all.
Audrey & Stacy ordered the grilled Goldband snapper with citrus and fennel salad and Gewurztraminer dressing. It looked great and I think the girls enjoyed it. The snapper looked succulent on a bed of grape, orange and fennel salad. Gewurztraminer is an aromatic wine grape variety with a pink to red skin colour, which makes it a “white wine grape” as opposed to the blue to black-skinned varieties commonly referred to as “red wine grapes”. The variety has high natural sugar and the wines are white and usually off-dry, with a flamboyant bouquet of lychees. Indeed, Gewürztraminer and lychees share the same aroma compounds. So they used it here to make a dressing for this dish.
For desert, we decided to share the strawberry soufflé, vanilla poached strawberries and a vanilla mascarpone sorbet. The soufflé was light and fluffy with beautifully poached strawberries with a hint of vanilla and a lovely grainy vanilla mascarpone sorbet. The restaurant even personalized the desert with Happy Birthday written on the plate for Audrey. How sweet.
The second desert was the chocolate assiette which is a variety of different chocolate treats on a plate. We had chocolate brownie, chocolate crème brulee, homemade Oreo cookie, chocolate ice cream, chocolate truffle, creamy chocolate mousse and chocolate tuile. You couldn’t get more chocolate with that or as I would call it chocolate orgasm on a plate! Everything on the plate was great, I loved the chocolate mousse and the homemade Oreo cookie. I think at the end I had overdosed on chocolate!
What a lovely afternoon with my besties and loved how this birthday dinners or lunches have also remains a tradition. The down point with the restaurant was that they took the wrong order for Stacy and actually cooked another order of the beef but they rectified their mistake and made the snapper for Stacy. Apart from that, the service was great and attentive. The meal came up to approx $50 per person which was pretty reasonable for a lovely meal and atmosphere.
Happy birthday Audrey and hope you had a lovely birthday! Love you lots.
On the whole, 9 for the food quality, 8 ½ for the atmosphere, 8 ½ for pricing and 8 ½ for service.
42 Mount Street
Tel: 08 9321 5013
Open Breakfast/Lunch: Monday-Sunday from 7am
Dinner: Tusday-Saturday from 6pm