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Chez Francis, Authentic French Brasserie in NoMad, Opens Today

Chez Francis, Authentic French Brasserie in NoMad, Opens Today
Officially open to the public on Thursday, November 16, Chez Francis is a quintessential Parisian brasserie serving traditional, gourmet French fare in a lively atmosphere. Located in the iconic Les Halles space at 411 Park Avenue South, Chez Francis brings the epicurean vision and passion of its bon vivant founder, Francis Staub – the creator of the eponymous Staub enamel cast-iron cookware – to life in a convivial setting designed for guests to gather over a sense of joie de vivre. 
 
Since his first visit to New York City in 1977, Francis has long been captivated by the allure of the metropolis. As his business grew, he became a frequent visitor and found himself enamored by the city’s fascinating mosaic of food cultures. As the creator of the beloved cookware found in the most prestigious kitchens around the globe, Francis spent the majority of his career entrenched in the culinary world, and has worked alongside some of the industry’s best talents, from Paul Bocuse to Joel Robuchon. With a longstanding aspiration to shift his focus from the pot to its contents, Francis is on a mission to revitalize the iconic establishment, now officially debuted as Chez Francis, as a symbol of French cuisine in the heart of New York. 
“The brasserie is the ultimate big-city restaurant and New York is the ultimate big city,” says Francis Staub. “Chez Francis is a love letter to the rich traditions of French cuisine and the steadfast heartbeat of New York City.”
The kitchen at Chez Francis is overseen by veteran Chef Jaime Loja (previously of Brasserie Ruhlmann) and serves an extensive array of French staples, from familiar classics such as Escargots, Frog Legs “Escoffier” with Grenobloise sauce and Steak Frites to more extravagant preparations meant for sharing including a 2 ½ Pound Lobster Thermidor and Whole Roasted Cornish Hen served in one of Francis’ famous cocottes. Diners can begin their meal with starters like Cheese Soufflé with Cauliflower Velouté; Homemade Foie Gras; Alsatian Tartes Flambées, a nod to Francis’ hometown; and a wide selection of artisanal charcuterie locally sourced from the renowned Dufour Gourmet, under the expertise of Chef Charcutier Aurélien Dufour (a Daniel Boulud alumni). Mains include Moules Frites, Bouillabaisse, Sole Meuniere, Boeuf Bourguignon and Le Canard served with an apple and carrot purée, braised endives and topped with a wild cherry sauce. Homemade sauces take center stage at Chez Francis as Francis notes “sauces and stocks are a fundamental element of great French cooking,” with offerings like Béarnaise, Peppercorn, Beurre Blanc, Shallot Marmalade and Café de Paris available to complement the flavors of any dish. 
 
An assemblage of flambées, cart service and tableside presentations bring culinary theater to the restaurant’s grand brasserie setting. A variety of savory and sweet dishes like the Côte de Boeuf Flambée and Crepes Suzettes are set alight tableside. During Saturday and Sunday brunch, guests can indulge in the Le Gigot d’Agneau, a traditional French-style roast leg of lamb that is carved from a rolling trolley for unlimited service.
 
Leading the hospitality experience at Chez Francis is Anthony Puech, a French native who has spent his career at the front of the house in high-end restaurants throughout his home country and New York City. He brings a wealth of knowledge to Chez Francis coupled with a passion for enhancing the guest experience with a warm and seamless service. 
 
“Chez Francis is more than a restaurant; it is a celebration of French cuisine and culture, where every meal is an opportunity to indulge in the epicurean ethos that defines our heritage,” says Puech. “It is a privilege to work alongside Francis to bring his vision to life.”
 
The 130-seat, 3,800 square foot restaurant is outfitted with a sprawling art-deco zinc bar, red leather banquettes, and intimate lighting to create an abundance of cozy corners. In addition, the restaurant displays Francis’ personal complete collection of Michelin Guide books starting from the 1900s – one of two such collections in the world. The space itself has a rich history, not only as the former Brasserie Les Halles where Anthony Bourdain worked as a chef and was inspired to write “Kitchen Confidential,” but as an operational restaurant since the early 1920s (the original establishment, Foltis-Fisher restaurant). With the opening of Chez Francis, Francis aims to create a warm atmosphere for guests to gather over French food and wines, embodying the traditional Parisian brasserie experience in its truest form. 
 
Chez Francis is open for lunch Tuesday – Friday, for dinner Tuesday – Saturday, and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, please visit www.chezfrancis.com or follow along on Instagram @chezfrancis_nyc.
 

About Francis Staub

Francis Staub is the creator of the renowned Staub enameled cast-iron cookware. Francis made many innovations with his cast-iron cocottes, which can be found in the best restaurants around the world. His fame has brought much attention to his hometown of Turckheim in Alsace, France where the town named a street after him. After conquering the cookware industry, Francis’ new goal is to spread his philosophy of what a restaurant should be: a meeting place that is jovial, energetic, and fun. 

About Anthony Puech

A French native, Anthony received his diploma in food & beverage at the young age of 14. While pursuing his master’s in food & beverage, Anthony gained hospitality experience while working in his hometown of Grenoble. After being awarded his master’s, summers were spent on the French Riviera at Alain Ducasse’s seasonal restaurant, Spoon. His winters were spent at the Michelin star restaurant, Les Barmes de l’Ours located in the mountainous Val d’Isere. He served as a captain in both venues for five years. Anthony moved to his first management position at Felix, a 3 Fork restaurant in the French Michelin guide. After five years of management experience, Anthony took the role of Assistant General Manager at Armani Café in Cannes. With his talents quickly recognized, he was hand selected by the company to move to New York as a manager at Armani Ristorante NYC. He was eventually promoted to General Manager.

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