French Martini is South Bank’s convivial French restaurant and bar, like a rustic slice of France in the line-up of eateries on Little Stanley St.
Red-and-white checked table cloths adorn the tables facing the street whilst tucked away at the rear is a cosy book and wine library in one corner with lounge seating and a handful of padded booths.
On the menu at French Martini are traditional French favourites done with flair, including starters such as snails in garlic butter and parley, oven baked camembert with spiced honey (served with baguette and salad) and duck pate with onion jam and caramelized apple, as well as the highly recommended Scallops St Jacques (scallops with butternut puree and mushroom duxelle).
For mains it’s hard to resist the traditional Moules a La Mariniere (steamed mussels in white wine, parsley, and shallot served with baguette) and the signature Epaule D’Agneau for 2 (melt—in-the-mouth lamb shoulder cooked for 7 hours) served with green beans and potato gratin, or try the Canard A L’Orange (confit duck with orange jus, creamy pumpkin pure and ratatouille).
There’s also the option of Filet de Boeuf (eye fillet) or Entrecote (rib fillet) with a choice of traditional French sauces – green peppercorn, red wine, blue cheese or shallots and parsley butter, while saides include frites or potato gratin and salad or vegetables.
Desserts include vanilla crème brulee, lava chocolate cake and a cheese selection served with petit salad and baguette.
The perfect end to dinner is a French Digestif such as cognac, armagnac, calvados or sauternes (dessert wine).
The lunch menu at French Martini features some of the dinner options including the snails and oven-baked camembert for starters and Truffle Risotto and Moules a La Mariniere for mains as well as lighter café fare such as Croque Monsieur and
Baguettes with fillings like duck pate, cornichons and salad or pork rillettes and salad.
Drinks-wise, French Martini offer a small selection of bottled French beer as well as Kronenberg Lager on tap and champagne including Piper Heidisieck by the glass or bottle and Jose Dhondt Blanc de Blanc by the bottle.
The wine list is sourced from leading French wine-growing regions including the Loire valley, Rhone, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Alsace, Provence and Chateauneuf du Pape, while a perfect aperitif is the Kir or Kir Royale (wine or sparkling with crème de cassis, crème de mure or crème de peche).
True to their name French Martini also serve cocktails including Espresso Martini, Mojito and the popular house signature French Martini (vodka, crème de mure and pineapple juice).
Nice to know – In typical French tradition, both Lunch and Dinner have fixed price menus, with Lunch 2-course $30 and 3 course $35* and Dinner 2 course $49 and 3 course $59*.
Need to know – It is recommended to take public transport (Uber or taxi) to South Bank if visiting Friday nights and weekends. Secure parking is available at Little Stanley St with a flat rate of $10 on Monday-Thursday nights if you enter after 6pm otherwise there is street parking which can be a bit of a lottery.
*Correct at time of visiting in October 2018.
Little Stanley St