I used to enjoy this restaurant as a rustic alternative to French fine dining. It has been a good 5 years since I last dined there and this week’s visit was not a great success.
The café has a lovely ambience but was slightly on the cold side; a small heater placed in the corner by our table not really enough to generate much warmth.
As our group were seated by the young waiter, we were promptly abandoned, so I had to ask one of our group to grab a wine list of a nearby table. The wines are reasonably priced compared to some restaurants and are mostly middle of the road French whites and reds.The food, however is overpriced for such basic cookery skills. Entrees $14 – 18 and mains between $25-30. (Though cheaper pizzas are also on the menu).
Our escargot were tougher than I remembered with a stingy serving of garlic butter sauce. Baked mozzarella was just that and sounded much nicer in writing than it tasted. Both of these were served with fairly cheap looking French bread on the side – filling but supermarket quality as opposed to bakery loaf.
The mains had little if no variation in the side dishes – all were served with boiled broccoli and scalloped potato – a lucrative night’s work for a chef which required little in the way of imagination. My snapper with almond cream sauce was pleasant but let down by the unimaginative sides, my husband’s steak with pate tasted as though the sauce came out of an instant gravy packet.
Once our waiter collected our plates he disappeared never to be seen again, and we sat alone in the otherwise empty restaurant wondering what to do next. Eventually we had no choice but to call it a night. Desserts were available but hadn’t been offered, the chef did not come to our table at all but stayed behind the front counter where we paid him as we left. We expressed our disappointment at the meal and service – time will tell if our comments will be taken on board.
French Connection has gotten complacent and needs to decide what it wants to be. If it wants to continue to charge the prices it is currently charging, then the staff need to start eating out more themselves and do some upskilling both in cookery and service. However if it’s basic French cuisine they’re wanting to deliver, they need to lower their prices to reflect that.
If you own or manage French Connection, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.