For many of us food-loving travel fiends, the relative confinement to our home kitchens has been a cruel tease: We’ve been cooking more adventurously than ever, but without the context that usually frames our culinary explorations. Does anything sound better right now than the intimate charm of a leisurely wine-soaked lunch at a neighborhood bistro in France? Until we can get there, here are some stellar versions of budget-friendly bistro dishes to bring together comforting flavors and fond memories, and to inspire travels to come.
Bistro or Brasserie?
Even in France, these terms are increasingly used interchangeably, but they suggest something very different. A bistro is typically a modest, often family-owned, neighborhood restaurant with a home-style menu and defined mealtimes. A brasserie is typically a larger-scale all-day and late-night restaurant, where you could stop in for a quick plate of oysters and Muscadet or a white-tablecloth meal of blanquette de veau or choucroute garnie.