I hadn't been back to Pinot Provence for a couple of years because the stuffy but flavorless overpriced Napoleons of everything produced by the previous chef just turned me off.
Last night I returned with a friend to give "Chef Lulu" and staff a chance to win me back and they most definitely succeeded. The food was straight forward, fresh and absolutely delicious. We shared oysters and tomato basil soup (which the waiter did not hesitate to offer to split between the two of us). I had the pan roasted duck breast, which was tender and fantastic with root vegetables. My friend had flank steak, which she pronounced perfect.
We shared a creme brulee tart for desert. The service was friendly and prompt but not at all overbearing.
The dining room retains the European villa decor but seems to have a much more relaxed atmosphere than before.
A great discovery was that they charge no corkage fee if you bring your own wine. We ordered from the pretty pricey wine list and then noticed the party at the next table bring in their own bottle. They were obviously regular customers and we asked them what the corkage fee was. They said "ZERO!" and we confirmed that with the waiter. They invite people to bring in their own wine and will chill and serve it as the diners desire.
Chef Lulu came out to talk to the diners later in the evening. She is committed to the presentation of fresh simply presented dishes. This young chef has great promise.
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