Stylish art deco interior. Exquisite patisserie in the display cabinets. French-speaking staff. Were we taking afternoon tea in Saint-Germain? Mais non! This was Prahran and Benny and I had been invited to the launch party for Chez Mademoiselle.
This chic Greville Street café, open for just a month, definitely has an air of Paris with a classy deep grey and white décor. The more extravagantly decorated back room has been turned into an elegant and cosy parlour with what appears to be an original antique fireplace – it would be a snug spot on a winter’s day. There isn’t much room for diners inside but additional seating is available outside on the footpath.
Tiffany, the manager and all-around superwoman – front-of-house, assistant chef, mother and another baby due in six weeks – described the café as a new, more casual venture for Chez Olivier, the next-door restaurant. Also French, naturellement.
Behind the scenes there is a single kitchen which spans the back of the two properties. All the food served in both venues comes from the shared kitchen, except for the bread which comes from that wonderful bakery Noisette.
Our afternoon tea consisted of mini versions of Chez Mademoiselle’s regular menu offerings, savoury and sweet, all served by the friendly and efficient staff.
Mini ham and cheese croissants were very popular among the guests – buttery and flaky, just like a croissant should be (see first pic). One of my favourites were the small pieces of croque monsieur (see first pic) – the best I have had since Louis Sergeant, and enhanced with a subtle hint of truffle oil.
Chez Olivier’s recipe, it is made with lots of egg white – and the dollop of house-made candied orange peel added a nice contrast. The filling of the lemon tart was tangy and light, and was topped with a swirl of Italian meringue – Benny’s favourite among the sweets. The fruit tarts (my favourite) were filled with a very good crème patisserie and topped with a raspberry, a blueberry, a strawberry wedge and a tiny sliver of kiwifruit. With such tiny tarts, it was very, very tempting to eat more than one…
Pain au chocolat
Chez Mademoiselle had been very generous with our afternoon tea, and surprised us with a goodie bag to take home. A mini croissant and pain au chocolat, two macarons (almond and coffee), a tiny pot of lemon curd and a small serve of blanquette d’agneau à la moutarde (lamb stew with mustard).
We loved it.
OverallWith traditional French fare and stylish décor, it is easy to imagine you have been whisked away to Paris. The excellent service and wonderful food made it a day to remember.
The Eat and Be Merry Crew were guests of Chez Mademoiselle.
Find it atChez Mademoiselle
123 Greville Street
Prahran Vic 3181
Telephone: (03) 9525 2273