First Look: Le Bistro, Roswell

Roswell Provisions, the popular Canton Street market and cafe with wine, cheese, meats, baked goods, fancy foods and an espresso bar, has added to its considerable offerings with a new French-inspired restaurant, christened Le Bistro.

The look: Located above Roswell Provisions, a vintage stairwell leads to a surprisingly sprawling and airy second story space with a series of smaller dining rooms and a separate bar area. The shabby chic-meets-country French decor is set off by bead board ceilings and wood floors painted in soft shades of beige. Seating ranges from sofas and banquettes to assorted tables covered in white linen with black napkins.

The scene: One recent sunny Sunday afternoon, bustling Canton Street seemed a world away, as large and small parties settled in for a quiet lunch, serenaded by a mix of romantic French songs drifting from the sound system. In the front room, a birthday celebration was underway with banners, gifts and a buffet.

The food: The menu leans to ladies who lunch favorites. Sandwiches ($8.50-$9.50) include croque monsieur, chicken salad, and French dip with house-roasted beef and horseradish cream. Crepes ($8.25) come filled with chicken and mushrooms, smoked salmon or ham and caramelized onions. Quiche ($8.50) includes classic Lorraine and spinach and Swiss cheese. Salad Nicoise ($9.50) is topped with seared ahi tuna. Rather than the traditional plat du jour, check for the weekly special ($14.95), served Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, with entrees like roasted chicken and vegetables.

The drinks: Hidden on the back of the food menu, there’s a small selection of house wines available by the glass ($6.50), carafe ($13.95) or bottle ($28). But the much bigger bar menu includes classic cocktails, wine by the glass or bottle, and draft and bottled beer.

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The extras: On Fridays and Saturday evenings, the kitchen stays open until 10 p.m., there’s live music until 11:30 p.m., and drinks and desserts, such as sweet crepes and creme brulee, are served until midnight. A small back terrace designed for al fresco dining is scheduled to open soon.

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