Today's Groupon gets you $60 worth of French cuisine for $30 at Aquarelle Restaurant Français, the elegant restaurant the Austin Chronicle calls "one of a handful of restaurants bold enough to offer rabbit, sweetbreads, and other organ meats to the sometimes squeamish Austin palate." It serves gourmet cuisine, such as black truffles and fresh duck foie gras, in a romantic turn-of-the-century home in downtown Austin.
The seasonally changing menu offers both a la carte and prix fixe (set price) selections. Current entree offerings include Chilean sea bass ($33), caramelized scallops ($30), duck ($42), and pan-seared beef tenderloin ($38). The menu marche ($45 or $65 with wine pairings) offers three selections for every course, including arugula salad, lamb chips, and profiteroles au chocolate for dessert. The dishes' charming flavors beret atop winsome French wonders that woo taste buds with their artful presentation and accent. French food is renowned across the food-eating world for its yumminess; Aquarelle's chef cooked at Les Frères Lani restaurant in Aix-en-Provence, France, before coming to Austin via underground pedway.
The dining room is a sophisticated space with warm wood finishes, custom china, French flatware, and more than 20 different wines, which are served in crystal stemware. The restaurant offers more than 100 different bottle selections, half of which are fine French wines. Service is friendly and professional; reservations are recommended any time and are required on Saturdays and Sundays.
- This young restaurant revisits France's second empire with its classical, sybaritic cookery -- aged steaks capped with miniature chapeaux of marrow gelatin, foie gras and bacon-wrapped quail peeking out of a delicate puff pastry, or towering salads of fresh field greens, artichokes, eggplant, gravlax, and foie gras. Aquarelle offers some of the most decadent dinners in town. Its elegant, formal dining room, and a troop of well-trained staff remind us that in France the restaurant business is a metier -- a profession, not a job. – Rachel Feit, Austin Chronicle
- The menu is still packed with complex dishes that marry grace and artistry. – Dale Rice, Statesman.com
- I've been waiting for a place like Aquarelle. I've needed an infusion of elegant French fare for some time now. And did we ever get it the other night. We shared a bowl of cauliflower soup with a hint of bleu cheese. The taste was pristine. Just lovely... I love it. And who says dreams don't come true. – Dining Out with Bob Balon
- This was a very lovely meal, beginning to end. – Stephanie S., Yelp
- Terrific service and excellent food. We really liked the interior and the wait staff were pleasant and concise with timing and presentation. – alexander B., Yelp
- The food here is exceptional, interesting, creative, flawlessly prepared and presented. – mediums, Citysearch
Aquarelle’s cuisine recalls France’s Second Empire. While France has yet to establish a Third Empire, speculative-history novelist Grace LaMontaigne has written several books about it with surprising historic accuracy. The sci-fi writer has also written a number of alternate history novels, including:
- The Day The Incas Conquered Japan
- John Hancock: Cyborg Samurai
- JFK versus The Dinosaurs
- Mighty Morphin’ Jimmy Carters
- 2010: United Space of America
606 Rio Grande St
Austin, Texas 78701Get Directions