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Downtown Gets Down with Bastille Day

Stephen Brown

Our sister in liberty across the pond will be celebrating come July 14 as Fête de la Fédération ("the National Celebration")—more commonly known as Bastille Day—splashes the calendar. As fireworks paint the sky in France, a few Franco-centric spaces in downtown West Palm will be rolling out the bleu, blanc et rouge for a celebration themselves. Set a reminder and let’s party for the French this weekend at these hip downtown Parisian hotspots.

Bastille Day Celebrations in Downtown West Palm Beach

The Backyard Bar

French Wine and Cuisine Pairing at The Backyard Bar - Cordon Bleu Catering - Palm Beach Hibiscus - Downtown West Palm BeachTucked along Rosemary Avenue at the Palm Beach Hibiscus boutique bed and breakfast is a hidden oasis for the foodie and Francophile at heart. The Backyard Bar is just as it sounds: an outside bar and dining area set amid a tropical garden and courtyard. It may sit right off a busy downtown street, but it seems miles from the hustle and bustle of the city. The kitchen and bar are manned by Cordon Bleu Catering, the husband-wife team of Michael Ober and Melanie Robertson-Ober. They just happen to be a German master chef and a certified sommelier, respectively, whose specialties include European tapas/small plates and fine French wines.

   For Bastille Day, Cordon Bleu's popular monthly wine-pairing event will focus on France on July 11. The event will feature wines from four French regions masterfully paired them with regional cuisine.

  • Dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday.
  • Cost is $25 per person.
  • Reservations are required; call 561-339-2013.
  • For more information, visit cordonbleucatering.com.

The four-course menu with wine accompaniment is as follows:

Branger Muscadet de Gras Mouton 2012 - Loire

 Oysters Mignonette

 

 Triennes Rose 2011 – Provence

 Grilled Vanilla Chicken Breast on Arugula Salad with Strawberry Peach Dressing

 

 F Magnien Bourgogne Rouge Graviers 2010 - Burgundy

 Veal Scallopine on Blueberry Tarragon Risotto with  Burgundy Cherry Dressing

 

 Mas Conscience VDP LHerault Le Cas 2008 -  Languedoc-Roussillon

 Thyme & Rosemary Crusted Beef Tenderloin with Fingerling Potatoes, sautéed Petite Veges

 & Red Wine Reduction

 

Pistache French Bistro

Pulling all the stops for this weekend of liberty, downtown West Palm’s Franco stalwart, Pistache French Bistro is working Bastille Day double-duty, kicking things off Saturday and following it up with an entire day of fun Sunday. Starting things off Saturday, Pistache will hold a bal populaire ("local dance") with a special three-course menu ($39), Nicolas Feuillate Champagne specials and a Bastille Whiskey tasting. At 9 p.m., DJ Chuck will kick the tunes for the local dance portion of the evening.

Pistache French Bistro - Downtown West Palm Beach - Bastille Day Celebrations and Dining Specials - Bouillabaisse

   On Sunday, Pistache is starting things early with brunch dansant. PB Catch will supply a pop-up oyster bar, while specials from Gérard Bertrand wines and Pavan Liquer will whet the palate. In true Parisian fashion, strolling street performers will entertain, while live music will keep the atmosphere effervescent.

   At 5 p.m., the fifth edition of the Waiters Race is on. Held at the Waterfront, this popular event pits downtown eateries and restaurants against one another but to see who can carry a loaded tray of filled glasses the fastest. Defending champ Travis Diener of Bar Louie looks to retain the Nicolas Feuillatte trophy, though competition will be stiff.

   Rounding out Pistache’s Bastille festivities, the apéritif et diner will feature a special three-course menu, tastings from Pernod-Ricard, Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne specials and strolling performers.

  • Reservations are recommended. Call 561-833-5090 to reserve your table.
  • For more information, visit pistachewpb.com.

 

Le Rendez-Vous

The newest hotspot to hit downtown West Palm, Le Rendez-Vous is bringing a slice of France state-side with a concept that can get just about anyone jazzed: everyday French cuisine prepared in simple dishes, matched with traditional beers and wine from small producers. The brainchild of Parisian brothers Olivier and Edouard Delrieu, Le Rendez-Vous is a gastrolounge, where foodie sentiments are merged with a stylish place to chill—the interior is industrial chic is every sense of the term.

Le Rendez-Vous - Downtown West Palm Beach - Bastille Day Celebrations - French Cuisine - tapas and small plates

   New to the block, at 211 Datura Street, Le Rendez-Vous will celebrate National Day in casual fashion, with a traditional brunch planned for Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. Dinner on Saturday will include the full range of the French-inspired menu. As always, French films, music and the altogether atmosphere of the place will keep the space the packed.

 

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