Saturday, August 14, 2021

French food in Vancouver - The French Table

Vancouverites have an amazing assortment of ethnic restaurants to choose from. I recently came across this list, which although somewhat out of date, does provide a tiny overview of what's available.  If you want to know why I say  it is somewhat out of date, just look at the French Restaurant listings: 


Bistro Pastis. 2153 W. 4th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6K 1N7. Phone: 604-731-5020; Fax: 604-731-5039.

Cafe Salade de Fruits. 1555 W. 7th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6J 1S1. Phone: 604-714-5938.

The Chef and Carpenter Restaurant. 1745 Robson Street, Vancouver, BC V6G 1C9. Phone: 604-687-2700.

Hermitage Restaurant. 115-1025 Robson Street, Vancouver, BC V6E 4A9. Phone: 604-689-3237.

Le Crocodile Restaurant. 100-909 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC V6Z 2N2. Phone: 604-669-4298; Fax: 604-669-4207.

Lumiere Restaurant. 2551 W. Broadway, Vancouver, BC V6K 2E9. Phone: 604-739-8185; Fax: 604-739-8139.

Those of you who enjoy French food like me know that Bistro Pastis has closed down, The Chef and Carpenter has closed down. Hermitage has closed down, and Lumiere has closed down. My favourite Metro French restaurant La Regalade (in West Vancouver) has also closed down. 

However, Cafe Salade des Fruits (despite its odd name) is still with us, and I go there as often as my cardiologist will allow. But there are at least two more French restaurants that are not on this list: Au Comptoir which I sometimes frequent, and another where I ate a year ago, and then a week ago, and where I am returning this evening. 

That's The French Table.  Located at 3916 Main Street, at 23rd, it is the pride and joy of Herve Martin, who formerly owned and operated the now closed Hermitage. Here's an online description about Herve (seen above holding a bottle of the 'house wine' from the family winery in Chamilly, France:

Former Master Executive Chef Herve Martin of Hermitage Vancouver is proud to present his newest eating establishment, The French Table, a classic French Restaurant in Vancouver.  Nestled cosily in the Riley Park area on Main St & 23rd Ave, it’s a twist on the former Hermitage Restaurant which was a downtown Vancouver staple on Robson Street for 24 years until 2011. After the developer announced new plans, Herve re-located to a bustling up and coming area that’s ripe for suburban French cuisine.

The French Table still carries the tradition of its former self, especially with the outstanding first class servers, whom he successfully carried over. You will find clean lines and an open room when first stepping inside. Unlike the traditional white table cloths, Herve cleverly designed its’ logo under the glass tables bearing The French table signature. You can select from a menu created by Master Chef Herve Martin and served in the traditional French style. The critically acclaimed wine list boasts one of the best selections of Burgundy wines in Vancouver and is highlighted with exclusive wines from the family winery in Chamilly, France.

Herve’s immense international cooking experience started when he was the personal chef to the Late King of Belgium. He has earned the “Les Freres Trois gros” 3 star Michelin in France and the equivalent version “Freddy Girardet” in Switzerland.

Herve headed the King Edward Hotel in Toronto, after which he opened the Five Sails French themed restaurant in the Pan Pacific where he was instrumental in hosting the jazz nights and special menus.

I won't pretend to be an expert when it comes to French cuisine, but I was so impressed with Herve's knowledge about food and wines, I decided to post this review. If you like French food, I highly recommend you check it out. Have the creative take on escargot to start, and let me know what you think. Bon Appetit!