Often in my life, I will wake up one morning and realize that I haven't actually spent any quality time with my love Evan in well over a week. Either because of work, exhaustion (which is often the case when he gets home from work), or spending it with friends. Even though I live with Evan and see him every morning and every evening, I find myself missing him everyday and looking forward to him coming home each night. But then we lay on the bed, reading or watching TV and barely interacting at all. To combat this horrible stasis we have instituted date night once at week. At least that is what we try for. Now seeing as we are both foodie (he is an actual chef), we are always looking for the next best place to get either some strange ethnic food that lights up our palettes, or something that is old but really really well done. One place that we have found since we moved to Denver almost a year ago, by the good graces of LivingSocial, is Le Grand Bistro. Le Grand calls themselves "French Comfort Food" which is not entirely accurate as most of their dishes would hardly be called peasant food which is what I would traditionally call "French Comfort Food." What comes to mind for me when I think of comfort food for the French is Bouillabaisse, Escargot, or the oh so famous Ratatouille. I speak merely as I find and probably only based in opinion, though I would like to myself as Gastronome.
Regardless of the titles, I always find Le Grand to have vivacious food. Perfectly balanced with deep rich flavors, and not drowning in cream. At least it does not appear that way to the causal guest. I love French food but most often when leaving a French restaurant I find myself bloated and regretting the calories already. Food, especially French food, should not leave you regretting what you just put in your mouth. Well cooked food, even if it is swimming in butter, should be balanced and not leave the diner feeling like they over consumed. Granted some of this is based upon the ability of the diner to portion sizes that reasonable. But this is also the role of the restaurant. Unfortunately in the US of A, we assume that more is better, bigger is better. But I can guarantee you that given the choice to eat once perfectly crafted truffle over a whole Hersheys bar, most people would pick the truffle. It seems so backward therefore that we insist on large quantities of mush over a simple, wonderfully seasoned, fresh, small portion of heaven. I have sold you haven't I?
Anyhow, among the perfectly balanced food at Le Grand is the balanced portions sizes that leave me comfortably full, and teetering on the edge of a need for dessert. Usually I opt out because I am attempting to lose weight but some day soon I will take the plunge. The best part is that Le Grand regularly roles out new items on their menus so there is also something interesting new to try. Recommendation? Try the Rabbit with the Papperadelle!