Located in the heart of Papeete, Le Soufflé is a quaint bistro that serves traditional French fare. Like the bistros of Paris, the menu isn’t static and changes depending on which ingredients are in season. In addition to the paper menu, the waitress also brought over a large blackboard, which indicated the daily specials of the day. This was all written in chalk and reminded me of the old school charm of Bistro Paul Bert. However, one problem remained. It was all in French! Luckily, I had enough basic French to get a gist.
Soon after, we were presented with a complimentary hor d’ oeuvre; potato bacon chowder and a piece of puff pastry. The crisp puff pastry was studded with thyme, perfect for dipping into the velvety soup.
Rudy’s Restaurant is the epitome why one should never judge a restaurant by its exterior. To be honest, when the taxi first dropped us off at a plain and antique looking house, I wasn’t expecting much. However remembering the constant upvotes from local residents, I decided to keep an open mind. I can say with no doubt this is one of the best meals I had during my French Polynesia trip!
The French onion soup was mind blowing! The rich caramel broth was a harmonious blend of savoury and sweet flavours. The virtue of a dish like this comes from patiently rendering the onions until meltingly soft. The consistency was also just right; neither too watery nor congealed. It’s hard to believe that in such a secluded island, a restaurant could produce such an authentic French onion soup. In all seriousness, this can rival some of the best I had in Paris.