Remember how I was asking about French Bistros the other day? Well, I found one. And not just did I find one, but I really liked this one. This was a meal that caused me to be in a good mood all day because I love knowing that yes, there are still hidden gems to be found around town. For me, the only downside is the restaurant is in downtown Carmel, which means a little hike for me, but I’ll manage.
La Mie Emile is mainly a lunch spot, but they also serve dinner (with a more limited menu) three nights a week. As a lunch spot though, this place was doing a booming business (apparently a lot of people have discovered this gem before I did) and when we left, I think every table was full, including the ones outside. They have quite an extensive dessert and specifically, pie list. In fact, the entire backside of the menu is desserts.
First of all, they had buckwheat crepes! I have loved buckwheat crepes ever since I lived in California, and worked in Oakland, we had a little crepe place run by a charming Frenchman from Brittany (open only for a couple of years sadly until he returned to France) who made wonderful savory buckwheat crepes that I have been trying to duplicate at home for the last 10 years or so. The crepe here was as close as I have come. I ordered the Galette avec Jambon et Fromage which is ham, Gruyere cheese, and an over easy egg, all wrapped in the buckwheat crepe. Because I wanted to see how close it would be to the one I always used to order, and because I just like to be difficult, I substituted mushrooms for the ham (which they did without even a blink of an eye).
The crepe was delicious. The crepe itself was light and was filled with just the right amount of cheese and mushrooms, and the one, perfectly cooked, and nicely seasoned egg. I do not like crepes that are overstuffed to the point of being more like an omelet wrapped in a crust of crepe. This is light, tasty and just the right amount of food for a nice light, healthy lunch. I am quite sure the version with ham is good as well, but if they will continue to make it for me, I will likely continue to order my version. They served it with fruit on the side.
Hubby had the Croque Madame which is a French version of a hot ham and cheese sandwich (well if it is just ham and cheese, it is a Croque Monsieur; the egg on top makes it a “madame”). It is slices of French bread, with ham in between, Gruyere cheese melted on top, and another beautifully cooked over easy egg on top. This was very tasty as well, and was more filling than mine because of the two hearty slices of bread. Hubby quite enjoyed it as well.
I had to try a sweet crepe as well, just because I was so excited about my first course. I just wanted something simple so I ordered the crepe with chocolate ganache. There were three of them in my dessert order neatly folded and served with the chocolate sauce inside and out. It was good—not overly sweet, but the sauce tasted like it was made with decent quality chocolate. It probably needed a scoop of ice cream or some whipped cream maybe to finish it, but I was the one who chose what I had. They had several dessert crepe combos with varying ingredients which I am sure are very good.
I am just thrilled to find a place with buckwheat crepes being done so well—and I have heard from family members that the quiche here is delicious as well. I really look forward to my next visit, which hopefully, will be in the very near future.
La Mie Emilie
15 West Main Street
Carmel, IN 46032