Resto Bobo review

Spicy salmon tarte flambe with apple and mint.
Spicy salmon tarte flambe with apple and mint. Photo: Paul Jeffers

110 Chapel St Windsor, VIC 3181

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Opening hours Wed-Sun 5.30pm-midnight
Features Gluten-free options, Vegetarian friendly, Wheelchair access, Outdoor seating, Bar, Romance-first date, Licensed
Prices Moderate (mains $20-$40)
Payments eftpos, Visa, Mastercard
Phone 03 9042 8168

French elegance. If only there was a pill we could pop that could imbue us with that effortless style. Speaking for myself, I know when I am mowing through a home-delivered pizza in my PJs, mozzarella smeared on my face, I'm about as far away from that slim-waisted je ne sais quoi as I can get.

But don't despair. Here, we can get a bit of style by association without forgoing our melty cheese and carbs.

Resto Bobo is a sassy Chapel Street newcomer, specialising in tarte flambe – ultra-thin flat bread topped with melted French cheese and a couple of simple toppings. Tarte flambe is a regional specialty of Alsace in north-eastern France, and one that owner Dan Xerri fell in love with while he was living and working in Strasbourg. 

Slender yet spacious: inside Resto Bobo.
Slender yet spacious: inside Resto Bobo. Photo: Paul Jeffers

He was inspired by the convivial nature of sharing a tarte flambe with friends and knew it was something Melburnians would relate to. So he enlisted a French chef, an expert sommelier/international wine judge and Resto Bobo was born.

The room is slender but spacious, a restrained palette of cream and charcoal cheekied up by art nouveau nudes over the open kitchen and black and white photos of Sarkozy and Chirac.

Naturally, you'll want to start with an aperitif. You could go the classic Kir Royale, but try the Melon Royale for something floral and eye-brightening, or the Strasbourg Spritz with Orange Colombo liqueur for a French take on the usual Aperol.

Steak and lettuce tarte flambe.
Steak and lettuce tarte flambe. Photo: Paul Jeffers

Aperitifs served, keep it leisurely with a cheese or meat board or, preferably, a mix of both. These little beauties feature all manner of housemade delights like a moussey duck liver parfait, thin, translucent slices of smoked duck breast, pork terrine with fig jam and a gorgeous slab of blue.

Now onto the tarte flambe, with a choice of three traditional versions and seven more unusual ones. Ease in with the gratinee, a basic combination of Emmental, onion and lardons. These crisp, playing card-sized slices are rich without weighing you down. Other traditional toppings include the addition of mushrooms, or confit garlic and chives.

Other combinations read like the perfect cheese board pairings – Morbier with soaked cranberries, blue cheese with vanilla poached pear, goat's cheese with prune, pine nut, honey and thyme.

Mixed cheese and charcuterie board.
Mixed cheese and charcuterie board. Photo: Paul Jeffers

"People love a good cheese board, but when you cook with really good cheese, it takes it to another dimension, it's a more unique texture and taste experience," says Xerri. 

Ask for a wine recommendation with your order too – the carte was curated by a sommelier who tasted each tarte flambe and chose a precise wine to match. The list of mainly French and Australian wines is tight and smart (there are beers and liqueurs too).

Picture it – twilight, at an outdoor table, Chablis in hand, nibbling delicately on a nub of comte ... see? You got style.

Pro Tip: Try the Feed Moi! option if it's your first time.

Go-to Dish: La Belle Vie tarte flambe topped with blue cheese, poached pear and rocket.