Cafe by day, French restau­rant by night

The Tribune (NZ) - - SAVOUR -

Cafe´ Brie has ‘‘steaked’’ a claim.

It’s a thriv­ing cafe´ dur­ing the day but a French in­spired restau­rant at night where beef is one of the spe­cial­ties of the house.

Michelle and Robert Huzziff have owned Cafe´ Brie at 218 Broad­way Av­enue for seven years and qui­etly trans­formed it into a dis­tinc­tive day and night time brasserie.

Michelle has been in hos­pi­tal­ity for 20 years and, for some time, was keen to pur­chase her own busi­ness. When Cafe´ Brie be­came avail­able, she bought it and set out to in­tro­duce her own tastes and stan­dards.

By of­fer­ing a break­fast and lunch menu of cooked and cabi­net food, pre­pared on site, she re­tained the cafe reg­u­lars and at­tracted new clients. Well po­si­tioned in Broad­way, Cafe´ Brie is the lo­cal for those work­ing in the vicin­ity, peo­ple do­ing busi­ness and oth­ers who find the park­ing easy and the cafe´ invit­ing.

More re­cently Michelle has in­tro­duced healthy op­tions such as a lemon and herb chicken quinoa salad and Thai beef salad as well as of­fer­ing gluten free food and en­tic­ing black­board spe­cials.

This has led to Cafe´ Brie be­ing a 2015 win­ner of the Cer­tifi­cate of Ex­cel­lence, awarded by TripAd­vi­sor, fol­low­ing pos­i­tive re­views by cus­tomers.

‘‘It re­flects the qual­ity of our food and the hos­pi­tal­ity pro­vided by trained and skilled staff,’’ Michelle says. ‘‘Over seven years we’ve em­pha­sised cus­tomer ser­vice, fresh and tasty dishes and a wel­come for all our clien­tele.’’

She’s de­lighted with her sup­port team which in­cludes front of house, Becky King, day­time chefs Anna Kirk­land and Brooke Clark and, this week, Michelle wel­comes back Shane Wilkin­son, as evening chef.

The idea to ex­tend Cafe´ Brie into an evening restau­rant came about three years ago.

‘‘We chal­lenged our­selves to do more and wanted to pro­vide our reg­u­lars with a restau­rant to come to if they wished to eat out,’’ Michelle says. ‘‘We’ve been grat­i­fied that many have re­sponded and, through word of mouth, we’ve wel­comed a new clien­tele as well.’’

The French in­spired menu in­cludes such dishes as Fil­let de Boeuf, which is a fil­let of beef with potato galette and a red wine sauce. Another op­tion is Pois­son du jour which is fish served with a prawn, pea and lemon risotto.

Michelle em­pha­sises that there are no hid­den costs with her meals. The price of a main course in­cludes the veg­eta­bles or sal­ads and her cafe´’s French trim­mings.

Cafe´ Brie is a BYO and li­cenced restau­rant and its wine list in­cludes cham­pagne for that spe­cial oc­ca­sion plus a range of French reds and whites.

With Christ­mas ap­proach­ing Cafe´ Brie is the ideal venue for an end of year work func­tion or fam­ily or busi­ness party. Michelle will of­fer a spe­cial set menu and in­vites peo­ple to con­tact her.

As a cafe´ by day and a restau­rant at night, she sug­gests you ‘‘steak’’ your claim for what it has to of­fer.

They’re a happy team at Cafe Brie, from left, Brooke Clarke, Becky King, Michelle Huzziff and Anna Kirk­land.

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