Bistro Guillaume, Victoria Park
Deciding to eat at Crown Casino made one thing strikingly apparent – I could not, for the life of me, accurately pronounce the name of Bistro Guillaume. As I booked over the phone for Bistro Guillaume, I embarrassingly fumbled over the name of the famed French chef Guillaume Brahimi, resulting in an unintelligible run of phonemes. Luckily, the lady on the other end of the phone was smart enough to decipher the mess and slotted in a booking for two on a Friday for lunch. As a proud Crown Perth member, I had received word of a “lunch special escape” at Bistro Guillaume, which I was keen to capitalise on.
The “lunch escape special” was priced at $49.50 per person, inclusive of a two course lunch at either Modo Mio, Bistro Guillaume, Silks or Nobu, with a complimentary glass of sparkling wine and a day pass to the Crown Metropol’s exclusive pool. It sounded like a fantastic deal, so I coerced A into going with me. I had booked for 12 noon and was unfortunately running super late that day. By the time I had run into the restaurant at 12.30 pm, I was in frantic overdrive, scared that the staff would berate me for my tardiness (previous late arrival experiences would dictate similar reactions from staff members). As luck would have it, the restaurant itself was rather quiet and A and I were seated near the window, with a clear view of the sparkling pool. People were already lounging around outside it, taking advantage of the summery weather.
I loved my glass of champs – nothing cheers me up more than a good vino. The glass was topped up with a fruity, white wine which was crisp and mellow, with notes of fruity freshness. The sparkling white wine woke me up quicker than an electric shock, prepping me for the main meals, which came whizzing out soon after we placed our order. We had the option of having either entrees and mains, or dessert and mains. Being a resident sweet-a-holic, I went for the latter option. Who can say no to that temptress, chocolate?
On my very first visit to Bistro Guillaume (over a year previously), I had the leg of confit duck with petit pois a la francaise, which, at the time, had been a wonderful, warm winter dish. The petite pois a la francaise was a rich, buttery, pea-filled stew poached in stock. With a smooth and favoursome gravy, the peas cooked just right and ham hock offsetting a sharp saltiness admist the stew, every element on this dish complimented each other brilliantly. The duck’s dark, tender meat just fell off the bone – it was absolutely delicious. This time around though, the duck leg was significantly smaller in size than the first time I had tried it – it was about half the size of its original portion. However, I did really enjoy the flavours and it was a main that was a great representation of French cuisine.
The barramundi fillet on a bed of carrot and ginger puree, coriander butter and pommes alumettes was A’s main, which I luckily got to sample a bit of. The barramundi was a gorgeous piece of fish, pan seared on the outside, with a golden crispiness to the skin. The flakes of fish itself were firm and moist, coming apart in large pieces. The carrot and ginger puree was a highlight of the dish, melding well with the coriander butter. A floss of pommes alumettes (the French rendition of chips) sat atop the fish. It was airy, crisp and added a textural crunch. A and I thought it was a solid main meal.
The chocolate soufflé with cherry ripple ice cream was served to us by the waiter, who recommended that we “dunk” the icecream into the gooey centre of the dessert. A had a few bites of it, whilst I commented that it was a pretty unique method of presenting and consuming a soufflé. We had to devour it quickly, as the ice cream turned into liquid within minutes. The soufflé was cloud-like in texture, crusty on the top with a hot, eggy and pillowy centre. The last time I had been there, it had come in a burning hot copper pot which was a nice, artistic touch. This time it came in a ramekin and while not as pretty, I was still warned by the waiter that it would be unwise to touch it. I only had a streak of the sticky cherry ripple in my ice cream, which was a little disappointing. Overall though, it was a rather pleasing dessert.
A’s dessert was the profiteroles with vanilla bean ice cream and warm chocolate sauce. The choux pastry was expectantly light and puffy, with balls of ice cream sandwiched in the middle. It was a truly decadent dish, finished off with a rich chocolate ganache. The ganache itself wasn’t overly saccharine, more on the bitter, dark side of chocolate. However, the sauce had a slight graininess in texture which mystified me a bit, as I love my ganaches satin smooth. It still looked a treat!
I truly appreciated our time at Bistro Guillaume, in particular its polished service and flamboyant decor. There were some parts of Bistro Guillaume that erred on the classy side, with its glittering chandeliers, tall mirrors and glints of gold. Other parts showcased flashbacks to the 1970’s, with its bright apple green colour scheme and bold black and white checkerboard patterns. Despite this, Bistro Guillaume was more ritzy than daggy, with different sections hallowed out to cater for different events – a bar section, a lounge for the casual diners, seats and tables for the formal dining area and an al fresco area, for those summery folk who appreciate a water view. The service was polite, friendly and worldly with our waitress making appropriate recommendations and informing us of the favourites. The food at Bistro Guillaume was also lovely, with only a few minor adjustments from perfect!
It was a wonderful lunch and certainly worth the return trip! I will be sure to keep an eye out for Bistro Guillaume and its ever expanding menu. Some fine French cuisine!
Rating: 7 out of 10.
Address: Crown Perth, Great Eastern Highway, Burswood 6100
- Open for dinner Monday and Tuesday (5.30pm till late) and Wednesday to Sunday for lunch and dinner (12pm till late).
- The full menu includes entrees, mains, pasta and risottos, a lengthy option of sides, dessert and dishes to share between two (including snapper, wagyu sirloin, Chateaubriand and a whole roast chicken).
- Open for functions (a booking over 10 people will require a set menu).
- Reservations can be made via phone (9362 7551), email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or online (http://bistroguillaumeperth.com.au/reservations).