By Andreas Vou
There is a little part of Paris in Larnaca – French Rendez-Vous is a restaurant that first made a name for itself when it was located on the Dhekelia road but since moving closer to the centre of town just a few years ago has managed to maintain its strong reputation as one of the best French eateries on the island.
There is an instant feeling of Parisian influence upon first stepping foot in the establishment, with a beautiful variation of colours and patterns across the walls. The same theme follows when it comes to the seating arrangements – the seats and tables vary throughout the restaurant. As well as comfortable, small, individual chairs, there are also leather couches as a seating option while the tables stick to a common, wooden theme.
As with most themed restaurants, in order to meet the varying demands of their customers the menu contains some universal dishes for those who are not keen to delve into the specialties of the given restaurant.
However, it would be a waste to go for a common dish when in a renowned French restaurant so, for starter, I went for the highly recommended Tarte aux Poireaux. This is a traditional French leek pie – a slice goes down great as a starter but can also be had as a main too. Very simple in its concept but has such a rich flavour and aroma which will have you asking the staff for the recipe.
For main, I opted for a Salade Pêcheur which is a wholesome salad made with a variety of different greens. Just because it is a salad, one would assume that it would be a lighter option than some of the restaurant’s imposing meat meals but this one was a challenge. Full of various ingredients including carrots, sweetcorn, tomatoes to name just some of the contents, as well as tuna, crab sticks and cocktail shrimps topped off with a healthy serving of their very own cocktail sauce.
From a past experience, the Duck a l’Orange is an excellent choice too and one of the restaurant’s self-confessed favourite dishes. This is seared duck breast topped with a rich orange sauce which is made using fresh orange juice, honey and a mixture of spices. The people at French Rendez-Vous recommend to order this dish medium rare or medium cooked as opposed to well done due the fact that duck breast tends to become chewier when it has been cooked well done.
The service was very good in terms of courtesy and politeness – our waitress was keen to offer tips and recommendations. However, on the down side, going on a Friday evening meant that there was a rather long wait both to be served and for the food to arrive, being one of its busier days of the week.
In the dessert department, it was hard to choose but it would have been a wasted chance not to try one of their crepes. It was tempting to go for one at the beginning of the night due to their extensive list of savoury options but it was worth waiting until the end of the meal for the Crepe Suzette, which went down great with a scoop of ice cream.
A nice touch which generally improved the ambiance of the establishment was the live music being played. It is not everyone’s thing, perhaps, but the pianist along with the singer generally added more vibrance to the room. And for those who are not so keen on the idea, it is only on Fridays and sometimes Saturdays.
SPECIALTY: Duck a l’Orange
PRICE: €15-25 (Three courses)
WHERE: 10 Artemidos, Larnaca
CONTACT: 24 644532