By: D Magazine
This snug, 80-seat restaurant in the Bishop Arts District is the brainchild of chefs/co-owners Nathan Tate and Randall Copeland of Ava Restaurant in Rockwall (Tate chefs at Boulevardier; Copeland cooks at Ava) and Veritas Wine Bar owners Brooks and Bradley Anderson. They describe Boulevardier as a “French-inspired, neighborhood-friendly, chef-driven bistro with a marrow luge sensibility.”
Here’s how to join the marrow luge club: grab a seat at the bar and order the roasted bone marrow. After you’ve finished the gelatinous golden-brown protein, stick the bone in your mouth and the bartender will pour a generous shot of Fernet Branca down the channel of the shank bone. Swallow and listen as the crowd cheers.
But don’t judge the kitchen by the frat-rat frivolity in the bar. Chef Tate puts out serious, thoughtful food, and he has mastered some French classics. The French onion soup is the best I’ve eaten in a decade. Beef bones are roasted, mixed with mirepoix, brandy, and herbs, and simmered for 15 hours. Then it’s all blended with a blonde chicken stock scented with leeks, carrots, and onions to create a deep, rich, earthy broth. The soup is thickened with caramelized onions, nutty Gruyere, and a thick slice of a baguette. Pair it with a Beaujolais or rustic Pinot Noir.
By: Dallas Observer
Last night was the première of Boulevardier, the new French bistro from Veritas owners Brooks and Bradley Anderson, chef Randall Copeland and chef Nathan Tate. The scene was set with French linens, crisp white walls and rich woods. The players were all dressed in tailored, plaid button-downs and freshly pressed aprons.
A lengthy wine list and curated list of simple cocktails act as curtain call. Wines by the glass range from $7-$18, and cocktails, like the Belle Femme I tried, are all around $10. The menu is decidedly French, featuring classic dishes like Bouillabaisse, Cassoulet, Croque Monsieur and French Onion Soupe. But those are just the tip of the menu iceberg, orglaçon, if you will.
Boulevardier opened its doors July 31 to lofty expectations. Mike Hiller of Escape Hatch declared it “the best restaurant to open in Dallas this year” while it was still in soft-opening mode, and Madame Critic Leslie Brenner is calling it “the hottest new restaurant of the season” well in advance of filing an actual review. Indeed, the arrival of a French bistro from brothers Brooks and Bradley Anderson (owners of Henderson Avenue wine bar Veritas) and chefs Nathan Tate and Randall Copeland (of Rockwall’s Restaurant Ava) was eagerly anticipated by local critics and mere mortals alike.
What could be better for this summer-into-fall moment than a good bouillabaisse, especially one enjoyed in the hottest new restaurant of the season, Boulevardier?
The star of this gorgeous bowl — piled high with clams, mussels, Gulf snapper, baby octopus and succulent prawns — is its broth, at once soulful and elegant, made from lobster shells and perfumed with saffron and fennel. Oh, oui, baby — it’s more luxurious than the authentic peasant dish, but let’s not hold that against it. Chef Nathan Tate’s finishing touch is a couple of perfect croutons daubed with garlicky, saffrony rouille kicked up with cayenne. Float one on the broth. Push it down with your spoon; let it soak in a little. Now taste.
I’m late jumping onto the Boulevardier-love bandwagon, but we all know Oak Cliff’s new French bistro is bound to stick around for a long, long time. So, no rush, right? When the boys from Ava (Randall Copeland and Nathan Tate) and Veritas (Brooks and Bradley Anderson) announced they were moving into Bishop Arts District together, the neighborhood could hardly wait. Half of Oak Cliff has probably visited Boulevardier already and seen what everyone’s been making a fuss about, but I thought it’d be nice to make the other half jealous with Desiree Espada’s handsome photos.