The gilt edge mirrors, chandeliers from another age and the very Euro feel of its Baroque interiors were what captivated us to come in. It reminds me of plush curtained windows in drawing rooms while the heavy snow piled outside.....hey but the weather was more tropical with the sunny intensity of what can only be in Australia, even if I am told it is already autumn here.
The displays are magnificent, with quiches, pastries, cakes, tarts, sandwiches, wraps, bread loaves - delicate and bold creations sitting beside each other and looking pretty.
I love the ambiance here, though it can be a bit shaded and dark for some others. I am captivated by the thoughts of sitting on those unmatched cushioned chairs listening and talking to close friends, or just chilling out on what life has to offer, or merely to sit and relax with people we are comfortable enough to not put up with pretensions one may see in other parts of the Big Smoke.
I thoroughly enjoyed my two layered vanilla and custard Mille-Feuille, to me the Creme Patisserrie was light yet full of taste and texture. Never mind the sprinkling of icing sugar at the top. I love this creation perhaps partly because it is not just a chunk of cake but offers different and delicate sensations when I bite in to it, yum.
The coffee is Campos but on this occasion I had the mocha, perhaps in a vain attempt to transverse both worlds on a day when I already had my high intake of caffienated stuff. My companions did not speak much about their Chai lattes or hot chocolate - I would have to pursue them further on their impressions. I had been warned before hand of varying customer service levels here, but we found it was good for us though. Maybe it depends on who was around working when one drops by - but I am not sure.
I will not have done justice, to say more at this juncture, about the French House on this quick drop by, but I look forward to at least having the croissants and baguettes on a next more leisurely encounter there. Again my scouts have asked me to look out for the absence of dryness, freshness of the dough or pastry and the clever use of dressings or garnish in my future judgements - all very handy.
I am not a fan of tarts, but some customers have gone for their strawberry or Ricota chocolate tartlets, when I did look around then sitting in what I reckoned was a leisurely experience.
On balance, the French House can be considered for a brunch or breakfast session in a more sophisticated surrounding, instead of the usual new fangled post industrial or rustic farmhouse look that seems to permeate the designs and lay out many of the new wave of cafes and restaurants in the greater Sydney area. Each person must manage his or her expectations versus reality in the foodie world, but also take into account factors beyond the details of food and drink, to evaluate a holistic experience. The French House does live up to its image as something French in the end - despite Campos being there....
The French House is located at 1G Danks Street Waterloo NSW, at the corner with Philip Street.
Opening hours are from 730am to 4pm from Mondays to Thursdays and from 730am to 5pm from Fridays to Sundays.
Contact +61 2 8399 2770