Le Cellier is pleased to announce its launch in the heart of the Venice Canal. In line with its eclectic community, this neighborhood gastro pub offers a French-Vietnamese menu with weekend jazz and art exhibitions.
In celebration of its launch, Le Cellier introduces $28 wine flights and $18 beer flights. Each flight consists of four glasses and four signature appetizers: salmon gravlax, mushroom of gratine on eggplant, Vietnamese five-spiced cheese, and duck rillet.
Bernard Louberssac, general manager, chef, and wine enthusiast, takes great joy in hand-selecting rare estate wines to pair with Le Cellier's farm-to-table menu. Louberssac concentrates on understanding the taste and nature of the wines and how they blossom when opened to bring out the full flavor of both wine and dish.
To name a few, he recommends the Mekong Delta Red River Fish grilled in fresh baby dill, turmeric, and bacon ($17) to be paired with Luneau Papin Le d'Or famous Muscadet from the Loire Valley ($11), or the Vietnamese Black Peppered Wok Fired Filet Mignon on fresh watercress ($18) matched with the Chateau Pontoise Cabarrus 2005 Bordelais from Haut Medoc ($12).
Le Cellier is the vision of co-owners Hiep Thi Le and Mark Van Gessel. Hiep wanted to bring French-Vietnamese cuisine to the community.
She explains, "Although it's not easy to find out here, French-Vietnamese food dates back to the 18th Century. This unique cuisine combines the fresh herbs of Vietnamese food with the fine heritage of country French cooking."
As a child boat refugee, Hiep Thi Le moved to Oakland, California, where her mother worked for a French-Vietnamese restaurant. There, Hiep got a chance to taste this unique cuisine. Much later on, she indulged at the best establishments in Paris and Vietnam when she starred in Oliver Stone's epic film, "Heaven and Earth."
She worked in the film industry until she decided to venture into her other love: food. Hiep opened up the successful Pho shop, China Beach Vietnamese Bistro, in Venice, California, where she has been honing her craft for the last 10 years. She now feels the time is right to share her love for French-Vietnamese cuisine.
Mark Van Gessel also co-owns the popular 50-year-old Hinano Cafe in Venice. His vision was to bring together casual socializing within the context of a neighborhood bar, in concert with quality food that accentuates the beer and wine at affordable prices.
Their visions combined, Le Cellier Gastro Pub is launched in their home community.