If you’re looking for a romantic dinner for Valentine’s Dinner, consider Pybus Bistro in Pybus Market.Pybus Bistro specializes in simple, wholesome rustic French fare that warms your heart and your stomach.
For Valentine’s Day, the Bistro is offering a prix fixe menu, which includes:
- Amuse bouche – a small bite to start the meal
- 2 choices of appetizers
- Soup or salad
- Choice of entrée
- Plate of 3 French pastries, made in house
- The cost of the dinner is $60 per person or $80 per person with wine pairing.
Michelle and Francis St. Dennis are both Wenatchee natives who have brought their love of French culinary traditions back to their hometown.The couple separately learned the art of French cooking. Francis went to school at Western Culinary School in Portland, then worked at Huntley Hotel in Santa Monica (Los Angeles). Michelle worked at a fine dining French restaurant in Seattle. Afterward, Francis got hired as the chef at Vin du Lac and asked if he could bring Michelle along as his sous chef. For two years, they created French-style meals and wine dinners together for the Chelan Valley. They realized that worked well together and de
cided to take on a
restaurant for themselves.The St. Dennis’ presented their business plan to Pybus Market when the market was still a brand new idea and the building itself was under construction. Michelle remembered that the floors were dirt and there were pigeons roosting in the eaves.In May of this year, Pybus Market and the Bistro will both turn 6 years old. In that time period, Pybus Bistro has developed a list of loyal regulars, many of whom come to eat more than once a week. Many of their employees have also been with the St. Dennis’ since before the restaurant opened.“We wanted to create the kind of place where someone could come for a special occasion, but also make it so that someone in Wenatchee on business could walk into in their street clothes and feel completely comfortable,” says Michelle.The St. Dennis’ describe their food as rustic French, with plenty of comfort food and simple, wholesome flavors that pair well with their wine selection.“We start by trying to get our ingredients locally,” says Michelle. “If we can’t get it here in town, we go for the next most local place we can find.”
In the summer, the Bistro gets a lot of its produce from the farmer’s market held weekly at Pybus Market; they also contract with local farmers for regular deliveries when produce is in season. They even have a local mushroom expert who brings in fresh foraged mushrooms.Francis’ favorite meals to make are the ones that highlight the local ingredients and define the area. He recalls a smoked trout dish they served one summer with local morels.“Ever part of the dish was from within a 30-minute drive.”As much as possible, the Bistro makes its food in-house: they make their own pasta, ketchup, English muffins, sausage and desserts. Their meat is brought in and finished or butchered in house.“We wanted our food to feel like you’re going to Grandma’s house, but dressed up a bit,” says Michelle. “We describe our food as honest, from scratch comfort food.”“I’m the happiest when we’re full,” says Francis. “People are happy, full and enjoying themselves.”The Bistro’s menu changes every 8-10 weeks. Although there’s always the same types of dishes on the menu – a fish, a poultry dish, a steak and some kind of gnocchi – the seasonings and flavors change with the seasons, what people are craving and what ingredients are fresh and available.There’s also great news for Bistro fans: the St. Dennis team is planning to open a new lunch restaurant sometime this year. The new endeavor will have a dozen menu items or less, and focus on specialty grilled cheese sandwiches. Keep an eye out for the new addition on the corner next to the Liberty Theater in the coming months.Pybus Bistro is open Monday to Friday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. They serve lunch and dinner and have a brunch menu that is served on the weekends. Reservations are accepted and encouraged for weekends and special occasions. To learn more, go to pybusbistro.com or call 509 888 7007.