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“Sincere and sublime French Cuisine that warms your heart but doesnt harm the pocket”

Chez Papa French Bistro and Wine Bar
Ranked #1 of 981 Restaurants in Johor Bahru
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Families with children, Bar scene, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Established in 1999. Traditional French Regional Cuisine. Cheerful and comfortable Bistro decor. Considered Fine Dinning by some customers. Adjoining Wine Bar with cozy ambience. Extensive wine list, large selection of cocktails and International beers by the bottle.
Reviewed June 3, 2010

Coming from a Singaporean who seldom thinks twice when embarking on a fine dining adventure... I was extremely curious to find out how fine dining in the heart of Johor Bahru would be like - I was extremely disappointed at myself for construing a preconceived stereotype because Chez Papa threw all of that out of the window.

Conveniently located along Jalan Jaya (2 mins walk from Plaza Pelangi - a popular mall in JB all cab drivers would know) the exterior of the restaurant was definitely in need of a make over - but I have second thoughts as well - its best to stay that way so I will not have to worry about making reservations in the future!

There are 2 sides to the restaurant - a Wine bar and a proper sit down dining space.

Service - be prepared to be served by approachable, friendly and unassuming staff who want to serve you the best dinner you can have.

Ambience – you will not feel like you are in the heart of JB. Enough said. =)

Menu – the dinner menu on Chez Papa’s website are evergreen items. Once you settle down in the restaurant, a hand written menu on a board will present to you what's in stall for the week – specials which you have to be there to find out for yourself! The dessert menu comes in the same format as well.

Wine / Drinks – a fairly extensive menu but we did not try it so no comments, although Chez Papa was having a champagne special at an very reasonable price.

Food –
French onion soup – 9/10 - as good as it can get, whilst I never liked the cheese and bread on top of the soup, it is supposed to be authentic.

Foie Gras with reduced port wine sauce – 9/10 – extremely savory and seared wonderfully, signature reduced port wine sauce a great way to bring out the flavors.

Lamp Loin Cutlets – 10/10 – when grilled to perfection the lamb fuses nicely with the fats, it screams “Lamb! / Heaven! / Wow!” in your mouth, there are few words which can aptly describe it so I shall stop at here.

Mignon with Truffles – 10/10 – generous, balanced and zero chewiness (no bubble gum effect at all) even when I had it grilled to medium. It was that good. Sauce was slightly salted though.

Crème Brulee – 8/10 – it disappeared before I could try it so I can only evaluate it based on when it arrived in front of my partner.

Banana Flambé – 9/10 – prepared in front of your eyes this was something new to me and I absolutely loved it.

Poulet Cordon Bleu – 10/10 – we had this going in a second night in a row and it is definitely worth mentioning. Its oven baked, subtle crispiness, wonderfully married and absolutely difficult to find another place which whips this up better.

Final thoughts - I am making the effort to brave traffic and customs just for Chez Papa again and again.

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2  Thank hobyo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 1, 2010

I have eaten there every night for a week. The restaurant has an extensive delicious menu and it would take a good month to sample all the great food. Very good wines from around the world are available for reasonable prices. The staff are very friendly and the restaurant is run very professionally by a husband and wife team who are both qualified chefs. The ambience is great and I have made friends there just from sitting at the bar and having a chat. It is an oasis in Johor Bahru. The only problem is parking as it is everywhere in the city but the owners have hired staff to help with patrons' parking.

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4  Thank NOly5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2010

This place was highly recommended by friends, so it was with great expectations that I finally went with them one evening.

The onion soup was excellent. I would go back again just for that. The steak was flavoursome, but I couldn't say it was outstanding. Other friends were very happy with their appetizers and entrees as well.

However, the cheese platter (3 or 5 types of cheese) was terribly disappointing as the wording on the menu had me expecting artisan cheeses or something alone the line, but what came out were tiny portions of supermarket-variety cheeses. Considering the price, I could've walked over to the supermarket one block down and have gotten a whole block of the same stuff for just as many dollars.

The desserts were not impressive either. We had a chocolate mousse, chocolate fondant and creme brulee. The mousse was more of a ganache, it was so dense! The fondant was nowhere near as oozing as it should be, and the creme brulee was rather bland.

The decor was rather kitschy and hardly up to par with one's expectations of a classic French restaurant. However, it was extremely comfortable, the staff were remarkably friendly and the service quick and efficient. We were so comfortable that we ended up having a 4-hour dinner!

I would not recommend this for anyone intending to propose, per say, but it is a rather nice place for a "nice" dinner out. A little on the pricey side for what you're getting (my meal came up to approximately RM100), but Chez Papa is definitely one of the best dining options in JB.

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1  Thank IshDewyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2010

We just moved to JB from Kuala Lumpur and was not sure whether we would love the life that we have chose here. That's when we accidentally stumbled into Chez Papa while venturing around town.

Surprise was the first word that came into mind. The welcome that was given to us was so warm that we immediately felt at home. Everything in Chez Papa is served with a personal touch, be it the food or the service.

Chez Papa made the transition into life in JB much more bearable. ;)

Thanks Shereen and Dominique! We love you!

-Reena

1  Thank reena82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 9, 2010

The decor, food and staffs are fantastic. WOW. I am speachless just love it that's all i can say. The atmosphere is just right. Never knew that there was such a place in JB.

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2  Thank Prakash76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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