This is article is sponsored by Crown Melbourne.
In a city that's obsessed with new food trends, Melbourne's Bistro Guillaume stands out for serving comforting French classics: golden, twice-cooked soufflé; rich onion soup sprinkled with thyme and gruyère croutons; steak frites with béarnaise sauce.
The Southbank restaurant has been plating up delicious, well-executed food for 11 years — extending the bistro charm to Sydney and Perth during that time — so what's the secret to its success?
Good produce and a healthy respect for it, according its owner, Guillaume Brahimi.
Since moving to Sydney in the '90s (much to the surprise of his Parisian peers), Brahimi has become a headline of Australia's fine-dining scene. Boasting an unparalleled passion and knowledge for French food, he credits Joël Robuchon with teaching him the latter.
"My biggest influence would have had to be Joël Robuchon who taught me the way your respect asparagus is the way you respect a lobster or truffle," he says.
It's a lesson that's stood him in good stead, particularly in Melbourne, where diners expect the same quality to go into their Paris mash as they do their grain-fed sirloin.
So what does he make of the city he choose to debut his first bistro in?
"Victoria is a very healthy place to live with great produce, great people and a joie de vivre that's very Melburnian," Brahimi says.
Hit play on the video above to see Brahimi share his thoughts on the Melbourne dining scene, his go-to order at Bistro Guillaume, plus the chef reveals what the best thing he's ever eaten is.