Remi Bancal, Remi de Provence

How does a fellow from Nîmes come to find himself running a restaurant in Hobart, Remi?
I've always liked Tasmania. When I first arrived in Melbourne to work at Mietta's, the first holiday I took was to Tasmania and I quite liked the climate. I liked what I saw and said, "One day, I know I will come back." Simple.

What's Remi de Provence all about?
We found that when we wanted to go out, there was a surplus of what we called fine-dining restaurants in Tasmania, but at the time there were not many that we would call a bistro. So we thought we'd open one ourselves.

What's cooking?
We've got a cassoulet going on - that's the dish of the day on Wednesday. There's a cervelas of chicken and pork done with coulis of tomato on the bottom and a pumpkin crumble. We always have a tarte Tatin, we always have a brûlée.

What's your go-to cheese?
My favourite flavour is goat's cheese. It doesn't matter which sort it is, as a tomme or soft or hard. I like it fresh as well - I use it a lot in cooking as a fresh curd, either with artichoke or as a ravioli filling, or with zucchini flowers.

What's top of your list eating-wise when you head back to France?
Two of my favourites are probably L'Auberge de l'Ill in Alsace and Maison Troisgros in Roanne. They're two institutions that seem to keep on going no matter what.

Remi de Provence, 252 Macquarie St, Hobart, Tas, (03) 6223 3933.



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