If there is one thing to be said of French cuisine, it’s that every dish requires a level of discipline and finesse when being created. Whether you’re a self-proclaimed French foodie or looking to treat your taste buds to something both unfamiliar and delicious, look no further than this list of Brisbane’s best French Restaurants.
Lutèce Bistro & Wine Bar | Bardon
When it comes to traditional French cuisine, Bardon restaurant Lutèce Bistro & Wine Bar is renowned for giving its guests a dining experience fit for a true French foodie. With celebrated French chef, Romain Bapst at the helm, the menu is impressively authentic thanks to Romain’s Strasbourgeois heritage. With over 28 years in Australia from Mietta’s Melbourne to Lutèce, his food also proudly possesses a modern twist. Aside from serving popular dishes such as Romain’s famous 72-hour braised Wagyu oxtail with mushroom ragout and potato mousseline, the sand crab lasagne, the Moreton Bay bug cocotte and the famous White Rocks veal, Lutèce is famous for being the only Brisbane restaurant to serve Canard à la Presse (pressed duck). This is said to be one of the world’s most extravagant and illustrious meals. Prepared in front of the diner, it was served to members of Edwardian high society in the 19th century. Lutèce has just launched their Autumn menus and specials and while you’ll visit for the experience and the sweeping views over Mt Coot-tha, you’ll stay for the exquisite food.
French Martini | South Brisbane
Even if you don’t know your truffle from your tartare, popular restaurant French Martini is the perfect place to get to know real French cuisine. The beauty in dining at French Martini is that everyone is French, the kitchen even boasting its very own French Pastry Chef. The menu has a contemporary take on traditional dishes and you’re free to order a full three-course meal or opt for a selection of light meals and tapas to share. A popular spot for lunch, French Martini offers any two courses for $30 or three courses for $35 from their lunch menu. But if you’re in search of the some of the best mussels in Brisbane, French Martini’s famous Moules Monday is back. For $50 you’ll receive a bottle of French wine and 1kg of mussels with live music. If it’s a Saturday or Sunday afternoon session you’re looking for, French Martini comes alive with Gypsy Jazz, charcuterie, fromage & Provence Rosé (plus any other drinks that take your fancy) between 3pm and 5pm.
Madame Rouge Bar + Bistro | Fortitude Valley
From the minute you step into Madame Rouge, it’s like you’ve been whisked away to the French Moulin Rouge itself. The dimly lit restaurant is lined with leather booths and high tables that surround a Parisian-style bar in the middle of the space. Boasting a menu brimming with French-bistro hits like escargot, coq au vin and steak frites, it’s no surprise that the atmospheric setting only enhances the French dining experience at Madame Rouge. After one visit you’ll be sure to return. Top tip: Don’t go past the gratinated goats cheese soufflé. Delicious.
Montrachet | Bowen Hills
Montrachet has long been known for its impeccable service and superb dining. Since its relocation to King Street in Bowen Hills, the famed French restaurant has breathed new life into its offering and continues to impress by serving a menu that showcases the evolution of French cuisine. While they continue to serve classic favourites such as steak frites and crab soufflé, Chef Shannon Kellam has included refined French dishes that show technique and exciting flavour combinations. From 6:30am Tuesday to Saturday, you will also find a selection of French croissants, danishes and brioche as well as pies, quiche Lorraine and filled baguettes. Délicieux!
The French Bistrot | West End
After serving French cuisine at the Boundary Markets for over a year, Julien Fourniev and partner Ashar-Lee O’Neil decided to turn their popular market stall into a permanent restaurant. Cue The French Bistrot in West End. Julien’s experience working as a chef for four years in the south of France is evident in the disciplined and delicious offering at The French Bistrot. On Tuesday, The French Bistrot offer any two courses for $38.
La Cache a Vin | Spring Hill
In 2003, Thierry and Carol Galichet started famed French restaurant, Montrachet in Paddington. Since selling Montrachet to Chef Shannon Kellam and Manager Clare Wallace three years ago, which has since been relocated to Bowen Hills, it’s time for Galichet to take on a new Brisbane venture. Galichet is said to be opening a new wine bar, bistro and wine shop in Spring Hill called La Cache a Vin, which will see him expand his existing French wine business. La Cache a Vin is expected to open at 211 Leichhardt Street, Spring Hill in June.