I am happy to report that Jean Marie Josselin of "A Pacific Cafe" fame is back in business on Kauai. He has opened "Josselin's Tapas Bar and Grill.
I am an old "A Pacific Cafe" fan, so I was happy when he returned to Kauai.
The new restaurant is in Poipu, at the Kikui'ula shopping center. It is right across the sidewalk from the recently opened Merriman's.
As always, Jean Marie has done it right and done it well. The ambience and decor is very relaxing. There is a bar with seating, and the kitchen is visible from the restaurant seating. The menu is tapas, with some one or two menu items a nod to the signature dishes of "A Pacific Cafe".
We went opening night, and returned for a second time this past friday night.
I have to say everything was perfect. The waitstaff were professional and attentive. Right after seating a "lagniappe" taste appeared at the table. Drink orders were taken and filled very quickly. There is a roving Sangria cart, where glasses of a fresh Sangria were served. There is a white wine Sangria which is based on Pinot Grigio wine with Lychees, and a red wine based Sangria seasoned with tropical fruits. The drinks and the decor were a refreshing welcome to the restaurant.
With a table full of 6 diners on the first night, and 4 diners on the second night, we were able to get through a lot of the menu items. I am happy to say that as he has done in the past, the menu changes from night to night.
Everything on the menu was excellent. Just to recall some of the dishes, there was a Firecracker Salmon Roll, (an of A Pacific Cafe dish), scallop pillows...a scallop ravioli with coconut milk sauce, a beef cheek ravioli, steamed ono, a roasted chicken dish, a plancha steak, braised short ribs provencal, a chorizo stuffed pork roast, a slow braised pork belly with asian pear kimchee, and another nod to A Pacific Cafe...his sesame crusted wok cooked mahi mahi with buerre blanc sauce. There was a wonderful seared scallop dish served vietnamese style with a caramel sauce.
Every dish was presented beautifully, and perfectly done. The staff was wonderfully attentive throughout the dinner. Unlike other name restaurants, the owner and chef, Jean Marie Josselin is behind the stove every night, with the food and presentation to his standards.
I cant say enough about how nice it is to have Jean Marie Josselin back on Kauai and behind the stove. A long culinary dry spell on Kauai has finally been broken.
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