Since its 2004 debut, Panache has distinguished itself as one Québec’s top restaurants. With its exposed wood beams, weathered stone walls and restored pine floors, this converted 19th century warehouse is a preservationist’s dream. Juxtaposing these rustic elements are such modern touches as plush armchairs, designer crystal and white linens. Before Panache, Executive Chef François Blais enjoyed stints at La Pinsonnière and Laurie Rachaël. Along the way, he developed his own take on Québécois cookery, emphasizing fresh local ingredients, tradition and innovation. Blais’ gusto shines through in his pan-roasted Bérac Farm lamb with pepper mint-infused jus and glazed beets, but be advised: their commitment to seasonal produce means the menu rotates frequently.
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From the From the May 2008 Food & Wine Go List
At this elegant blond-wood restaurant in the historic Biltmore Hotel, chef de cuisine Philippe Ruiz sets the standard for classic French cooking in Miami. Sommelier Sébastien Verrier makes brilliant pairings from a 300-bottle list that spans the globe (at a range of prices) and features rare finds such as organically grown Pascal Doquet Blanc de Blanc.
We loved: Braised-beef (supertender shank) in a red wine and foie gras sauce with soft polenta.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.