“Loosely translated as ‘Eatery of the Sun’ “, Brasserie du Soleil is a charming French and Italian fusion restaurant that boasts authentic cuisine from these regions. Open since January 2015, this petite place resides in Greensburg, Pennsylvania and is truly a gem in the center of this city’s hub bub. The restaurant is located along side an eye care center and if you blink, you may miss it!
My co-workers and I were in Greensburg, PA for a training. We drove three hours that day and could not stop talking about our dinner plans. A few nights prior, I had researched restaurants in the Greensburg area and Brasserie du Soleil had 4 and 4.5 stars on Yelp and Tripadvisor. After glancing over the menu (click to read), filled with french classics like savory crepes and traditional Italian such as gnocchi, we all knew that this is where we wanted to break bread. Upon approaching the front door, our nostrils were filled with scents of gratifying fare. Smells are free, right?
With a decal of the word “Italy” on the wall and a large picture of the Eiffel Tower, you are reminded that these European flavors will be incorporated into your meal. On a weeknight, such as this, you will find empty tables. However our server mentioned that this eatery is packed on the weekends. They are strictly a dinner joint, opening at 5 pm on Tuesdays-Fridays and at 4 pm on Saturdays. I would suggest making a reservation on Friday or Saturday.
About ten intimate tables were set, with a wall mounted fire place directly in the back. This created an intimate setting in this small space. My coworkers and myself enjoyed Brasserie du Soleil’s quaintness, as we felt that we were taking part in something special. Our little secret.
The kitchen had an open concept, displaying the restaurant’s name illuminating above. Our server, Sam, explained that there is only one chef and that she was the only waitress that night. Because of this, we felt as if we were in someone’s home, being taken care of by them personally. Sam answered all of our questions about the restaurant and menu as if she had created the menu herself. However, she announced later that she was a new employee. We were impressed with her knowledge and could tell that she had a passion for this place.
Brasserie du Soleil is a BYOB restaurant. This information is displayed on their website, however the $5.00 corkage fee is not. Since there is no law in Pennsylvania that states restaurants must charge this fee, it is not expected by patrons. Therefore, it would be appreciated if it was indicated on the website or menu.
Sam, our server, suggested their award winning Spicy Coconut Crab Soup for an appetizer. None of us hesitated. This soup was politely spicy and did not overpower any of the other flavors. The broth was smooth and light, unlike a thick and chunky chowder. The subtlety of coconut essence, combined with surprise pieces of fresh crab at the bottom of the bowl, made our mouths water.
I ordered the Sea Scallops, which were served with wilted spinach, chardonnay cream sauce and a white truffle pomme puree. Sam, our server, told me that the jumbo scallops just came in fresh the day before. They were perfectly cooked and translucent when cut into. The wilted spinach was tender and lightly cooked to maintain its texture. The chardonnay cream sauce was delicate and complex. When I tasted the scallops covered in this sauce, all I could do was proclaim, “Holy S*** this is good”!
On the side, in white bowl, was the white truffle pomme puree. This mashed potato was a flavorful side that perhaps could have been incorporated into the main dish, instead of being plated separately. This detracted from the fine dining appeal and reminded me of a Cracker Barrel side.
The dessert special that night was a Bananas Foster Crepe that was flambeed tableside. This was my favorite part of the whole meal. Sam said this was the first time she ever made this, but you would never know. The bananas were sauteed in a homemade pecan butter and flambeed in three different liqueurs.
Not only was it fascinating to watch, but the crepe tasted phenomenal. As you can see, when broken open, creamy vanilla ice cream gushed out. Yes it may look sloppy and unappetizing, but imagine sweet caramel, bananas and nutmeg wrapped in a warm crepe. This was divine and enough to share. There is something to say about ending an excellent meal with a dessert like this. You leave your customers with a sweet feeling.
I give Brasserie du Soleil 4.5 stars because of their customer service, fresh ingredients, sensational flavor profiles and warm atmosphere.