Just beside the canal harbour in Naas town, Franck Amand's small French restaurant and wine bar has simple décor with a sprinkling of French chic and tables that are quite tightly packed to meet demand - it struck a chord from the outset with local diners, who like its warm atmosphere and the big blackboard menu offering unusual dishes that you won’t find in other restaurants in the area.
It’s a sociable place, and there are platters of charcuterie or (mainly French) cheeses that can be ordered for one or to share, also a chargrilled rib of beef on the bone for two - and cheerful bistro classics like snails in garlic butter, moules frites and tarte tatin.
As well as the blackboard menu, an à la carte menu simply priced by course is available as four individual courses (including a cheese course) or to make up a 3-course seasonal menu, which is very reasonable at about €29.
Appealingly presented, perfectly cooked and very tasty food, together with friendly service and good value has proved to be a recipe for success. An informal lunch menu offers French classics of a different kind – tartines and soups, dishes of the day and terrific ‘big plates’ with a starter and a main course served together for a quick meal.
A mainly French wine list includes a good choice of wines by the glass, and there’s a range for sale online too.
Offering fine dining without the fuss, this is a lovely restaurant and its success is well deserved.
*Also at: VDC@Home 2 Castle Building, Friary Road, Naas [(045) 889200; vdchome.ie; firstname.lastname@example.org]. More recently also at The Elms, Punchestown; and TRI Equestrian Superstore, The Curragh. VDC@Home offers a combination of café, food to go, outside catering and an office delivery menu.