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Dinner at Bistro Guillaume


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My God, Bistro Guillaume.......hmmm.....that was the best classic French dinner I've ever had. Bistro Guillaume is how I imagine Thomas Keller's Bouchon would be like.

Click onto the menu on the Bistro Guillaume website, and you’re not going to find any dishes on the cutting edge of contemporary cuisine. Indeed, with people seemingly looking for new food thrills, the traditional French dishes on their menu could be seen as a negative by some. But to pass up dinner here based on what's on offer would be a mistake. Many of the dishes on offer could be done at home by a dedicated amateur cook, and there are home cooks out there who can do them better than a lot of restaurants. But it'd be a rare person who could do the same dishes to the standard set this restaurant.

Here's a rundown of what we had. My entree was a mille-feuille of veal sweetbreads with braised shallots, mushrooms, and truffle jus, and my dessert was a peach melba "notre faon". The missus had jamon iberico served with olives, pimento, fennel, and quail egg and finished with a souffle au chocolat, soft ganache in the middle, with a glace a l'orange. We both had the steak frites with sauce bernaise, and all servings were very generous. I remember Daniel Southern's cooking from his days at L'Oustal, and whilst he is doing Guillaume Brahimi's recipes, you can still taste how far he has developed in his craft. Phillipa Sibley is responsible for the desserts, and the ones here just confirm to me that she is the best dessert chef in Melbourne (and probably Australia).

The service was excellent, the staff did not miss a beat, and the dishes came out at a very comfortable pace.

For the quality of the ingredients and the brilliance of execution, Bistro Guillaume is a bargain. Consider this, I went to look at the menu of my local French restaurant, and for a similar three course dinner plus a glass of wine for two would cost around $170. At Bistro Guillaume, we spent $200, with the mains both priced in the $35 to $40 region. For an extra $30, you jump from the local suburban restaurant to a 2 chefs hat restaurant.

Melbourne is well served by many great French restaurants. But Bistro Guillaume has just set the bar higher.....and not by just a little bit either.

Daniel Chan aka "Shinboners"
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  • 2 weeks later...

Where is this Dan?

Judging by the excellent dinner we had L'Oustal a few years back, I'd love to give this place a whirl later this year.

"Coffee and cigarettes... the breakfast of champions!"

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Hey PCL,

Bistro Guillaume is at the Crown Casino and their website is www.bistroguillaume.com.au

I reckon you'd also like Giuseppe Arnaldo and Sons too (it's part of the Maurizio Terzini empire).

Speaking of L'Oustal, I remember the charcuterie platter we had there. I went to Griffs Wine Pub (Johnston Street, Fitzroy) the other week, and their charcuterie was excellent. The only thing that didn't quite work for me was their duck liver parfait - the flavour was very good, but the texture was too smooth for my liking. As for the other food we had, their steaks were good, their desserts were great, and they had a wine list that you'd enjoy flicking through.

Daniel Chan aka "Shinboners"
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