It was A and my one year anniversary the other day. As people who go out to restaurants and talk about food fairly often we had to choose a place that was special to celebrate this occasion. A mentioned to me that we should go to Bistro Guillaume because she has heard me talk about everything I love about French food for a long time.
Bistro Guillaume, Much like the merrywell is part of Crown’s massive investment into the Perth night life scene. As you walk through the hotel lobby and into the restaurant you are greeted with the most wonderful shade of green. I also really liked the textured wallpaper on the walls of the restaurant. The next thing that I noticed was that there is definitely a lot of great training going on with the staff at Bistro Guillaume because every staff member I met had a bit smile on their face and they were completely friendly.
As we sat down and looked over the menu I mentioned to A that it would be nice for us to have a toast for our anniversary. What I saw next was one of the biggest flaws of the meal, the wine by the glass list is pretty small and the cheapest sparkling wine is a staggering $18 a glass. That means that if you want to share a toast with your partner it is going to cost more than $35. A ordered a lemon, lime and bitters and I went for a iced lemon tea. The iced lemon tea is another aspect where the service is fantastic, they don’t have iced lemon tea on the menu yet they were willing to go out of their way to make one up to order just for me.
While we were waiting for our courses to arrive we received a complimentary bread course. I have a feeling that this is the same bread that they use at rockpool. This definitely isn’t a bad thing as the quality of the bread is fantastic. I also really enjoyed adding a few sprinkles of sea salt to the chewy bread. A’s thoughts on the bread were “Warm, fresh and enjoyable” 8/10
Next up my entree arrived and since we were in classic french surroundings I decided to go for a classic french entree. Steak tatare, This was my first time trying steak tartare so I was interested to see what it tastes like. I remember reading in a book somewhere that mentioned that steak tatare should never be put through a mincer, it should always be cut with a knife as a mincer causes the meat to toughen. When my dish arrived and I tried some I instantly knew that it wasn’t put through the mincer as it was just really tender and delicious. I also really loved the capers and onions that were mixed through the tatare. My only criticism about this dish is that it was served with potato chips, the chips aren’t really a great vessel for transporting tatare and I would have much preferred some crusty bread. 7/10
After our plates were cleared away we received our main meals about 20 minutes later. I decided to go for another classic french bistro dish, this time I went for the duck confit. This was served with a simple stew of peas, mint and speck. I really liked the duck, I found that the skin was perfectly crispy while the meat stayed very moist. I thought that the accompanying stew was tasty but I would have liked another aspect to the dish. 8/10
A went for a grilled piece of salmon that was served with clams, roasted fennel and a buerre blanc. Her thoughts on her dish were “Perfectly cooked, slightly crispy on the outside. I also really liked the roasted fennel, I felt that it really added to the dish. “
We had a little bit of room for dessert so we decided to share a salted caramel tart that was served with rum and raisin ice cream. The presentation of this particular dish certainly impressed us. The tart was sliced perfectly and there was a swirl of chocolate hovering over the tart. I really enjoyed the tart, I liked that they weren’t shy with the amount of salt that they added. I thought the rum and raisin ice cream was tasty but I would have preferred some classic vanilla bean ice cream. A’s thought on the tart were “It was very rich, I am glad that we shared it as it would have been too much to have for one person. I would have liked there to be more salted caramel but overall I liked it. ” 7/10
One thing I noticed halfway through my meal at Bistro Guillame was that i turned my head and looked at the open plan kitchen and I noticed that Guillame Brahimi himself was working on the pass. I wondered if the food was any different due to him being in the kitchen but I doubted it as it seemed that the staff are very well trained. I enjoyed my meal, I went in comparing this meal to rockpool and in hindsight I think that I still prefer rockpool. Both meals cost around the same amount but rockpool just seems to be that little bit more special.