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No. 38

Taverne Bernhardt’s

NAMED FOR THE RENOWNED FRENCH STAGE ACTRESS (and noted Dreyfusard) Sarah Bernhardt, this second restaurant from Zach Kolomeir (Dreyfus) is another convincing hommage to the cooking of his hometown, Montreal. In this case, though, instead of bistro fare, he has chosen to celebrate something even more popular and commonplace there — rotisserie chicken, in the singular style of Chalet Bar-B-Q and the like. Be advised that the version available here is both faithful and superior. Better-quality birds are cooked more expertly on a far fancier rotisserie (a Rotisol from France, no less). The accompanying gravy has the correct vinegary tang (but fortunately lacks the original’s scads of cornstarch). And there is plenty more on offer here, in this eminently cozy, quaint but stylish little restaurant in an old westend townhouse. The Rotisol welcomes other meats like duck and pork and, if you’re lucky, rack of lamb, its fat cap studded with garlic. While accompanying vegetables roast in their drippings in the tray beneath, some are cooked on the rotisserie itself — like aubergine for the baba ghanoush. Imaginative, hearty salads are pleasingly textured and complemented by richly seasoned dressings (maple syrup, horseradish, etc.). Basic bistro fare, like leeks vinaigrette and trout amandine, still feature. House-made ice cream makes the perfect finish for a night on the patio.

At the bar or, on a warm summer night, on the front (and only remaining) patio.

Solid and FOCUSED.”
–Anthony Walsh

Photos: Dan Neuhaus

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