Bastille Day at Gerard’s

Hot on the heels of July 4th is Bastille Day. La Fete Nationale is a celebration of French independence. At Gerard’s in Lahaina, it will be on the front burner on Monday, the official holiday.

Unlike July 4th, at which hamburgers and hot dogs are devoured at casual cookouts, Bastille Day pays homage to gourmet French fare and culture here on Maui.

So if you are a Francophile, this holiday is perfect, or parfait, for you.

Situated at Plantation Inn on Lahainaluna Road, Gerard’s will have your palate singing like an American in Paris on Monday during dinner with its island-inspired three-course gastronomic menu.

Singer and keyboardist Lydia Panzik will perform. She’s the Edith Piaf of the Maui kind, and will get you in the French mood with classic songs such as “La Vie En Rose” and “Mon Dieu,” among many others in her repertoire.

Dine outside on the verandah near the mango trees as fans spin overhead. Or dine inside Gerard’s in the cool, air-conditioned restaurant, packed with antiques.

Reminiscent of a French country home, the inn boasts wainscoting, stained glass and gingerbread latticework.

Kick back and sip some champagne or a nice bottle of say, Bordeaux, listen to Panzik, and let owner-chef Gerard Reversade tempt your taste buds with multiple choices of his appetizers, entrees and housemade desserts on the special menu.

A native of Gascony, Gerard epitomizes the French culinary world here. Celebrating 32 years in Lahaina this year, Gerard works every morning alongside Chef de Cuisine Cliff Concepcion, as they diligently prep, chop and stir.

For Bastille Day, they’ll offer a choice of five appetizers, five entrees and five desserts for you to savor a three-course feast of your liking that will be a gourmet steal at $58 per person, plus tax and tip.

For starters, choose from glistening and fresh ahi tartare set atop crunchy taro chips; shiitake mushrooms in puff pastry; escargot Forestiere; housemade pate de foie de porc that Gerard crafts from the Malama Farms Berkshire pigs in Haiku; and lovely salads of Hirabara Farm lettuces.

Bastille Day entree choices are signature dishes, such as catch of the day (right out of Lahaina Harbor) topped with crab and laced in champagne sauce; pork tenderloin with rhubarb compote; filet of beef in Bordelaise sauce; confit of duck with Brussels sprouts; and mussels poulette (veloute with added egg yolk) and saffron rice. No a la carte items will be served that day, only these tried and true winners.

All of the desserts, ice creams, curds and mousses are masterfully made by Gerard in house. Choose from creme caramel Opera with chantilly cream and meringue along with strawberries scented with Kirsch; or his famous Dusty Road, coffee and chocolate ice cream laced with butterscotch sauce; and three other Bastille Day delights. As for his regular menu that is served on other nights of the week, he offers a 20-percent kamaaina discount. You must try his new saddle of venison en croute with Jamaican pepper sauce, Akala berry jelly, chestnuts, walnuts and vegetable confit.

The fresh-baked quails are also off the charts in taste with soft polenta, truffle butter and foie gras puree.