This is a Joburg classic. As far back as the 1970s, Irene and Marc Guébert were well-loved for their Le Français restaurant in Rosebank, thereafter Ile de France in Dunkeld West and Cramerview.
A move within the pretty Pineslopes shopping centre now has the glass-fronted Le Soufflé look and feel even more welcoming. Guests spill onto the verandah in summer and, in winter, soak up the sun streaming through the windows.
Naturally, the restaurant prides itself on that classic French dish, the soufflé. Here it’s served in a variety of savoury options like the favourite, a combination of smoked salmon, fresh salmon and spinach. For sweets, even those who don't have a sweet tooth will go weak at the knees at the thought of their famous chocolate chip soufflé.
French classics reign: in winter the hearty, slow-cooked cassoulet lends a warm feeling of comfort and wellbeing. Another excellent choice (and all-year favourite at this establishment) is the traditional provençal bouillabaisse.
They offer a variety of other meat and fish dishes, but a casual lunch begs for one of their hamburgers, like the French burger with goose liver and port wine. Also a good call would be one of their famous pies, served with mash: duck and cherry, for example, or beef and Guinness. You’ll also find a list of crunchy salads, good enough to enjoy either as full portion for lunch or as a starter at dinner.
And watch out for the blackboard specials – there’s always something fresh and interesting to try.
Le Soufflé offers a good wine list that will sit comfortably with everyone’s pocket. Also take note of their popular food and wine pairing evenings. Events are announced in their regular e-mails, if you sign up.
The service is friendly in an old-fashioned way; soon you’ll be on first name basis with the waiters. Broad, welcoming smiles make for a happy experience.
The cozy brasserie is cleverly designed: they are able to cater for private gatherings for up to 100 people. Checkered tablecloths add to the French feel.
Have a look around: among the patrons there will undoubtedly be a number of people who have been following this charming couple from the start. They’ve also gained fans among younger diners in search of something authentic and of high quality.