French dips and other good things

by Mary Tutwiler

Under the sure hand of Patrick Poupart, the little French bakery on Pinhook continues to evolve.

While Poupart's has had cold sandwiches and quiches in its refrigerator cases for some time now, the menu has expanded to hot, freshly made sandwiches, soups, quiches and salads, all served to be eaten in the bakery. Or should we say bistro.

Anybody who cares about sandwiches knows the bread's the make or break element. I don't care how elite the prosciutto or flavorful the roast beef, if the bread is bad, you might as well forget about the sandwich. Lots of lunch places in town use Poupart's french and ciabatta loaves to make their poboys, so it's a no brainer for the bakery to segue into the sandwich trade.

Poupart's is offering a range of sandwiches: French dip (roast beef and gravy), Croque Monsieur, (ham and cheese, topped with bechamel and baked), Mozzarella, Tomato and Basil Panini, The Daily Grinder (Italian cold cuts) and an Applewood Bacon Club.

The Saturday special soup, wild mushroom, potato and leek bisque, is calling my name, and I'm seriously thinking about pairing it with the grilled asparagus salad. Dessert, well we all know about that chez Poupart. Now if only they started stocking a few bottles of vino, I'd think I had just stepped off of the Boulevard St.-Germain into one of those left bank gems in Paris.

Poupart's Bakery and Bistro, 232-7921.