Great food at a fair price

By John Pierre | Jul 18, 2013

Aren't we all guilty of salivating over the thought of legitimate French food?  I am.

I had the pleasure, recently, of talking with the Chef/Owner of Cafe de Paris, Firmin Berclaz.  It was an eye opening experience for me.

Chef Firmin is the one and only chef in this fantastic French restaurant and works alone with no kitchen help with one notable exception, Oscar, who creates all of the five star salads and has been with Chef Firmin for 28 years!

The restaurant is located at 109 Main Street on the north side of the street, just a stones throw from the ferry dock.

Firmin does all of the chef work for each meal, seven days a week.  Serving Monday through Friday for lunch between 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. and evenings from 5:30 to approximately 9 p.m.  Saturdays and Sundays are only open for dinner.

Other than a week off in November and five notable holidays (Thanksgiving, Labor Day, 4th of July, Memorial Day and New Years Day) our chef is always there to satisfy the yearnings of your palate.

I found out, much to my surprise, that our fantastic French Chef isn't French at all.  He's Swiss and came to this country from Switzerland in 1970.

Not French?  Sacré Bleu!  But he proudly informed me that he serves better French cuisine than the French do.

Having dined there, I can't disagree.  This amazingly talented chef has been the chef in this restaurant for 30 years (he finally bought it in 1990.)

His lunch menu, served usually by one of two delightful employees, is priced quite reasonably.

Not what you might expect from a restaurant with cloth napkins and table cloths.  I'd say the prices are on par with other lunch menus of most restaurants in our beautiful downtown Edmonds.

Some of us (not all) yearn for properly prepared escargot.  It's available at Cafe de Paris.

It appears on the dinner menu, which, like most restaurants, is priced somewhat higher than lunch offerings.

I might add that the Chef explained that if someone should request this delicacy for lunch, he'd be pleased to prepare it even though it's not on the lunch menu.

Lunch menu?  How does Ham and Mushroom crepes with béchamel sauce or Poulet 'Dubonnet with Rice (roasted chicken in dubonnet sauce) or Pate Maison served with fresh fruit sound to you?

All of these in the $10 to $11 range.  Other lunch selections might be a buck or two higher.

For dinner, maybe you'd like to try Saumon au Champagne (wild caught salmon in champagne sauce) or Beef Bourguignon (marinated beef in red wine sauce w/herbs and vegetables.)

Dinner menu items are four or five bucks higher but all are a real French treat.  Every Thursday evening Jerry Capretta, a guitar virtuoso, is there to add to your dining experience.

As Mikey from the famous television ad said, "Try it, you'll like it!"

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