I asked my husband to describe this place and his answer was straight forward enough – ‘French’. Well, he’s right alright. It might be the most french place I’ve encountered so far in Melbourne. I mean, even all the servers seem to be french, at least judging from the french chatter between them behind the bar. Not that I really have any idea, after all my french studies seem to have been completely ignored by my brain, but at least it sounds french. Despite being french Chez Olivier doesn’t come with any snottiness. The service is fast, professional and personal and you feel completely taken care of.
This is where we headed to for a romantic date night a while ago. I know what you’re thinking – date night? Isn’t she a bit young for that? What can I say – it’s a silly name for a really nice event. We had been here once before and thought we knew what to expect. In retrospect, we didn’t. Because I remember food being good and the ambience nice, but this time it was more than nice it was outstanding. I know I normally give you more info of the feel of the place but brace yourself, I’m about to do something out of character. I’m going to talk about our food in great detail. You’ll see why in a minute.
It all started with the bread and butter (note that I only took the picture after we’ve engulfed more than half of the bread). The bread had a great texture to it, but what really blew our minds were the butter. It’s butter, right. How amazing can it really be? Well if it’s Beurre Noisette infused with cinnamon the answer is – a great deal. We even got a bit territorial about it and didn’t want to hand the butter back, even when the bread was finished.
Since it was date night, we went all in with three courses. I started with a personal favourite; Salade de Chèvre Chaud, which was absolutely divine. It was possibly a bit big in size for being an entrée, so be sure to bring someone else along to share it with.
Both of us being vegetarians we are used only have one or a few options on the menu, as is the case here. The meaty dishes we saw other guests enjoy looked equally amazing though, and the Boeuf Bourguignon en Crôute in it’s puff pasty seemed especially popular.
We ordered both vegetarian dishes: Goats Cheese and Pesto Ravioli and the Vegetarian Millefeuille. My ravioli was smooth and tender (can I even use that about a veggie dish? Well I will, just watch me!) and melted in my mouth. The flavours were full and amazingly balanced.
The millefeuille is traditionally a layered puff pastry. In this case it wasn’t sweet (duh, it’s a main) but a crisp, savoury experience. The mix of the crunchy pastry with the with fresh veggies was absolutely great. As you probably noticed, we got a bit excited about the food. Not our fault though, because it was just that good.
Despite being incredibly full after the main course, no meal at a french restaurant is complete without the mandatory dessert – Crème Brûlée. Chez Olivier gets extra points for bringing out the little blow torch at the table and caramelising the sugar in front of my eyes. And the taste? I don’t think I even have to say – you probably guessed it already. If not, just make your way over then and give it a try. I promise you, you won’t regret it.
121 Greville St Prahran VIC 3181
(03) 9525 2273