Bonjour, gourmets! That’s ‘foodies’ in French….
Augustine’s Bistro (401 W. 4th Street, Winston-Salem) is the “revised” new kid on the block. The restaurant space opened a year and a half ago as Mundo Global Tapas, did a little shake-a-roo, and re-opened as a French-country American bistro a few months back. Some of us restaurant-goers liked the idea of tapas and were sad to see those go. But, we LOVE the idea of French in downtown Winston-Salem as it adds to the culture of our city.
My daughter, mother-in-law and I have an annual tradition of seeing The Nutcracker Ballet with a delicious dinner beforehand. Since we chose UNCSA presentation of The Nutrcracker, it couldn’t be more convenient than dinner downstairs at Augustine’s Bistro.
Just about every time I’ve eaten in this space (when it was Dioli’s Trattoria and Mundo) my family and I were shuttled to the back dining room. It’s pretty with a gorgeous Stevens Center chandelier as the restaurant resides there. But I LOVE sitting in the front of the restaurant enjoying the street view and people watching–it’s so French. I was very pleased that’s where we were seated. You really can’t beat a corner seat at Augustine’s. Now…about the food.
Augustine’s Bistro has blend of French and American cuisine with a few items like calamari thrown in. The chef also kept a few of the very popular items from its previous incarnation. Augustine’s also has a small bar with a great selection of craft cocktails. If French is not your favori, then you don’t have to worry as there’s enough to choose from this side of the pond, like sandwiches and burgers as well as pork tenderloin and a very popular salmon dish. I decided that I’d go all in. So, we ordered Escargot Florentine baked with spinach and parmesan. It was served in perfectly cute escargot serving dish. The escargot was tender and herby. The spinach was cooked perfectly and the cheese was bubbly and toasty and just right.
My MIL ordered the Crab Bisque. It was very flavorful and riche! She didn’t eat all of it, so I stole it and took it home.
For my entree, I went with the featured Cassoulet which showcased an amazing “frenched” duck confit on the bone, chorizo sausage and pork belly. It sat on top of a delicious herby, wine infused broth of white beans and tender vegetables. It was si delcieux! Perfect for a cold almost winter’s night. Not sure how French chorizo is, but I didn’t mind it!
My MIL ordered the steak with frites. Very simple, quite tasty and the steak was perfectly cooked with hand-cut frites and a garlic aioli. We must call them frites, not fries at Augustine’s. 😀
My daughter ordered buttered noodles—Sigh. Instead of butter, the noodles came with a cream sauce instead, but she still ate a bit of it. And the leftovers, we took home and I added the crab bisque from above to it for lunch a couple of days later. So satisfying.
We actually had time for dessert so I finally introduced my little one to Creme Brulee. Why wouldn’t I? This creme brulee was magnifique! Little flecks of vanilla bean, a perfect custard, crunchy top that my daughter tried to eat all of. Really, creme brulee is my favorite dessert ever….
Augustine’s Bistro also has plenty of space for private events so if you are looking for a special occasion place, you know you’ll have a beauty in that location. Be sure to follow them on Facebook or check their website often for announcements regarding special dinners highlighting wine, beer and spirits.
Augustine’s owner Chef Eric Muck might actually be onto something by highlighting his family’s heritage with this new concept. If I had to make any suggestion at all (it’s not about the food or service because it was all terrific), I’d say…”Chef, go more in…heck, go ALL in!” Cassoulet, Beef Bourguignon, Duck a l’Orange, Chicken Dijon, Quiche, Oh oui! And for dessert, Eclairs, Madelines, etc. I mean, you’d eat that wouldn’t you, foodies??? And maybe start offering brunch because you’ve got the perfect brunchy set-up. And French bread for the table, of course. ;). But don’t get rid of the Mushroom Toast. Never ever stop making that, chef.
Do you have a favorite French dish, foodies?
Hours: Tues-Sat, 5pm-10pm