Husband and wife team, Greg and Marie Marchand, have now opened Frenchie in Covent Garden – their first site outside of Paris.
Greg opened Frenchie in a tiny alleyway in the garment district of Paris in 2009. With help from friends and family, he took a chance on the small site in an unknown area of the city and designed and built the space himself, all while Marie was pregnant with their first child.
Within weeks, the prix-fixe restaurant was fully booked and highly acclaimed by the Parisian and international critics, including Le Figaro who called it “sans conteste, le plus bluffant des braquages culinaires de la saison”, loosely translated as ‘without doubt, the most stunning culinary showstopper of the season.’
Two years later, he opened Frenchie Bar Ã Vins across the street, a no reservations wine bar with a long list of sharing plates, followed by a more casual deli / sandwich counter, “Frenchie to Go”, inspired by Greg’s UK and US experiences. This deli completed the trio when Marie joined the venture in 2013.
The last born of the Frenchie family is a Wine Shop on the same street, Frenchie Caviste, which opened at the end of September 2015.
Greg uses, for the most part, British-sourced ingredients, and thus his dishes have evolved into new adaptations across the Channel. His simple yet inspired cuisine includes trademark techniques such as house-smoked meat and fish, vibrant seasoning and fresh flavours, which all shine through.
“With Frenchie, I wanted to create a lively, yet relaxed place where you want to come but most importantly return again and again,” says Greg. “I love London and I am so excited to have the opportunity to bring Frenchie over here and to feed on the energy, the diversity and the “richesse” the city has to offer. I look forward to rediscovering the best of British – both the produce and the people!”
The 60-cover, two-floor restaurant, designed by renowned set designer Emilie Bonaventure, features a light-filled informal ground floor restaurant and bar. A key member of the Frenchie family, Emilie’s design features whitewashed walls and exposed brickwork, similar to the Paris site, warmed by brass, copper and zinc accents, leather banquettes and seats and a rich colour palette.