Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Real Bistro

Before Crazy Ang Mo and Botak Jones, there was the French Stall. Wikipedia defines a bistro as "a type of small restaurant serving moderately priced simple meals in an unpretentious setting, especially in Paris, France. A bistro may not offer professional service or printed menus, and it will usually specialize in simple classic dishes such as steak au poivre, French onion soup, and coq au vin." That sounds like The French Stall to me, coffee shop setting et al, though of course it offers both professional service and printed menus.

We used to frequent The French Stall a lot more frequently, back when we were watching our budgets more. The set meals were good value for money and, if I remember correctly, there was no service charge. A quick glance at our latest bill and clearly the latter is no longer true, but I am getting ahead of myself...

A visit to The French Stall was in order the other night, as part of our Deepavali pilgrimage to Little India. After all, we had to feed KKN, she who complains about black pepper in her food.

We were early, arriving there before 6.30 p.m., not a bad idea really since the place filled up relatively quickly. The place was pretty much as we remembered it, cheesy french decor and all, and they still have a no-reservations policy except, as Madame explained, for large groups who may otherwise not be able to get seated.

We ordered a number of our old favourites and something from the much expanded menu.

french onion soup


pork rillette with gherkins

mussels in white whine sauce

We dug into the appetisers with relish, polishing off an additional order of bread in the process. The mussels were as good as I remembered it to be, and HM enjoyed the pork rilette.

duck leg with panfried foie gras and lentils

duck breast with risotto

seafood sausage with spinach

Of the mains, I liked my duck leg best, especially the lentils. It was full of robust flavour. Of course, HM had to remind me that the lentils tasted that good because they had probably been stewed in duck fat. The seafood sausage wasn't my cup of tea, mostly because of the soft slightly mushy texture.

chocolate souffle

In the end, we had room for only one dessert and a smallish one at that. The chocolate souffle was nothing compared to the mondo one we had in Ho Chi Minh City but it was decent enough.

The bill came up to $144 for the three of us, and that included a total of four starters, three mains, one dessert, one beer, one big bottle of sparkling water and three coffees, not quite as cheap as I remembered it to be but certainly still holding its ground as the most reasonably priced French food in town.



Blogger Sonicstarburst said...

Can I follow you next time u go makan? The French Stall is still around? Neat. Try La Petite Cuisine at Serene Centre...fairly decent...small portions. Also found a new watering hole with North Indian and Western food. Called Bar Bar Blacksheep, along Cherry Avenue.The western food joint is called Smoking Frogz.

8:02 pm  
Blogger blobbes said...

yeah we've had our eye on La Petite Cuisine for a while, but no one seems to eat there leh...

8:42 pm  

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