Midtown is really starting to become a happening place. I remember a few years ago when there really wasn't much, and now you have the shops at Midtown along with some pretty awesome restaurants, gelato, and coffee shops. One of these restaurants is the newly opened Brasserie Azur, which is owned and operated by the same innovators behind the South of France-inspired Villa Azur Restaurant & Lounge on the beach.
When you first walk in the ambiance and feel of the restaurant is awesome. The Mediterranean inspired look of both the Spanish tile and white furniture is both refreshing and chic. The exposed brick offsets the Tuscan pergola ceilings laced with bougainvillea flowers. Innovative ambient lighting sets the mood for an energetic atmosphere for diners to embrace. The outside walls are lined with citrus trees with a beautiful running fountain to accent the French brasserie. It’s actually really beautiful.
Now, let's talk about the menu, which showcases French fare with Mediterranean influences. When you see people say “Mediterranean” or “French” influence you may be easily intimidated, but not here at Brasserie Azur. The menu is both easy to understand, and there are so many delicious options you won’t know what to choose. Both Executive Chef Erwin Mallet and Chef Michael Bujold, who works behind his wing, make sure of that.
For an appetizer I suggest you ask what the specials are and order one or two. The fish they serve at Brasserie is fresh, so you may want to focus your efforts there. I tried the snapper and shrimp ceviche, which looked more like a tartar in its presentation, but was still perfectly light and refreshing. When we look at the entrees you can either stick to fish and order the catch of the day, or go more traditional like I did with either the steak and frittes or the paillard de poulet. Absolutely delicious.
For your dessert, please make sure they bring out the cart where they present to you everything they have for the day. It turns out that many restaurants order in their pastries, but not here. Pastry Chef François Paille is behind the helm here and he is truly doing a wonderful job. The tarte au citron meringue (lemon pie) it out of this world. I didn't leave one crumb!
And for those of you who are into happy hour Brasserie Azur hosts an indulgent happy hour weekdays from of 4 to 8 p.m. highlighting a number of specialty priced lip-smacking libations and light bites.