Spatula, Spoon and Saturday

Eating and Cooking all the things in Melbourne

Bistro Vue – Melbourne Food and Wine Festival 2012 Restaurant Express

A lunch date. I can’t begin to describe these two magic words into something easy to understand to those without young children. While I personally get to go out fairly frequently while Josh is on sole parenting duty, we rarely get to go out together – just the two of us – anymore. So when my beautiful, generous friend (there’s no other words to describe this kind of friend) had offered to babysit Mini Me for the afternoon, I jumped at the chance of another Restaurant Express session at Bistro Vue.

(Bistro Vue MFWF Restaurant Express menu)

Bistro Vue is one of those places that were on my must-visit list since I had staggered through its gorgeous dining room after having consumed five full strength cocktails and told myself, ‘blimy, this place is noice. We have to come back for a romantic dinner.’ So when confronted which the which-express-lunch-do-I-go-for-just-the-two-of-us dilemma, I immediately picked out Bistro Vue.

We were left loitering around awkwardly at the entrance for quite a few minutes before we were seated into the packed dining room and presented with the Restaurant Express menu. The lack of choices in the menu was slightly disappointing. the services slightly more brisk, the tables were spaced more closely together than you would normally expect at a non-express lunch.

(Bread and butter on a very pretty dish)

What made this meal memorable are as follows:

  1. It’s like having a first date with a person you’ve just realised you’ve fallen in love with. Again.
  2. This person doesn’t drink his wine and gave me his.
  3. I am a cheap drunk. A very cheap drunk.

(Chicken terrine with pickled vegetables, sourdougb bread and Dijon mustard)

I decided on entree and Josh decided on dessert. I’m not too sure why on earth I would choose chicken terrine over the Vue pistachio souffle but sometimes I’m stupid like that. Given a choice between entree and dessert, I always go for the entree. It was pretty but the not-so-memorable part of this meal.

(Roasted lamb shoulder with lavender jus, pommes mousseline and French beans)

Our main of roast lamb shoulder, on the other hand, was delicious. The lamb was tender and flavourful (as oppose to the lamb I had in Sydney). The mashed potato… I meant the pommes mousseline was smooth and buttery. And of course you can’t go past green beans. Can’t really complain too much about not having choices when the only choice was good. Josh quickly polished his off and greedily eyed mine. And because the whole thing was so romantic, I was in a generous mood and gave him a good portion of mine as well.

(Demoulded pistachio souffle with creme anglaise)

But wait, before you go off mistaking me for a sweet, generous, caring and sharing wife, there was an ulterior motive. I knew his pistachio souffle was coming up and I had already wasted my two-course selection on the chicken terrine. The souffle was everything that was promised to be good about a souffle (except for the fact that you had to wait a while for it, that is). It was light and fluffy and if I were to use a cliche, it was like eating cloud. Delcious sweet cloud.

And I got a good share of it. Yay.

(Coffee served with canele)

The coffee (again I asked for a piccolo but was told they didn’t have the right glass for it, so I had to settle for a latte) was served with complimentary petites four. I can’t say I thought that highly of them but I never had these caneles before so I wasn’t too sure what to expect.

(I used to walk past this sign everyday when I worked around the corner and couldn’t help being surprised by the sign change even though it’s old news)

Overall, the meal was fabulous. Mostly because of the company. The food was very decent and the Restaurant Express proved to be a good value. The service was adequate though not outstanding. A bit like being in Paris, which I think is the name of the game here at Bistro Vue.

You want to bring romance back in your love life? Have a baby. Nothing brings back romance like the fact that you couldn’t remember when your last date was.

Bistro Vue
Address: 430 Little Collins St Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: 03 9691 3838

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