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Le Sud
11am -11pm
2/F, Oriental Times Square, East Gate Bridge
028 8666 3023
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Susan Johnson (more chengdu)
“Here, you feel like you are in France,” writes the author of a local blog (in French.) The interior of Le Sud is reclaimed industrial chic, with metal chairs and tables painted bright red and purple and a banquette along one wall.

The vegetable soup from the appetizer menu was nothing special. The French appetizer plate, on the other hand, was a treat – a variety of bread served with an appealingly bitter green olive spread, an eggplant sauce, and a little salad of cucumber slices with fresh bright mint. I wish I knew where they get their olives.

The lasagna comes in a huge tranche that seems to dwarf the plate, a portion big enough to satisfy one of the construction crew members working down the street. The meat sauce is filled with a combination of vegetables and flavours that feel more French than Italian: zucchini, eggplant, mushrooms, and a strong dose of rosemary. With a bit of help from the salt shaker on the table, it's really delicious.

There are two desserts – a creme brulee and a fruit milllefeuille. The pastry in the millefeuille is something like a fried wonton skin with layers with fruit and custard cream. It's beautiful and tastes fine. The creme brulee is torched to order and set down still carrying the scent of melted sugar. The surface cracks open to reveal cream flecked with real vanilla. Besides the superfluous layer of jam at the bottom, this is a great specimen of the classic French dessert.

There is a thoughtfully edited wine list, with bottles from France and South America and a couple selections each of red and white by the glass. The by-the-glass serving is very small, though; more like a tasting portion. The prices are very reasonable for the quality of food on offer. Three courses with coffee and wine will not take you far over Y100 per person. The single page menu is in French, Chinese, and English.

Le Sud
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