When the French Revolution erupted, Americans weren’t sure how to respond: They worried about the consequences of killing off a king, and suspected the sudden arrival of Republicanism could unsettle the world order.
Nowadays, Americans aren’t nearly so conflicted. Francophiles in the U.S. mark the revolution’s start by eating mussels, sipping Champagne and dancing the can-can on July 14.
To simplify celebration planning, three local restaurants are planning Bastille Day specials:
• The biggest party unfolds at Fish, which offers casual plates and cocktails to revelers who identify with the proletariat and a four-course menu to diners aligned with the bourgeoisie. The second-floor Patriots party, which runs from 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m., features croque monsieurs, mussels and a “sloppy Louis,” all served with fries and priced at $10. Downstairs, the $45 Princes’ dinner (or $60 with unlimited wine) begins at 7 p.m. Guests at both events are invited to participate in cake and costume contests. The restaurant is also planning “French music and performances to top last year’s event,” according to spokeswoman Keely Laughlin. To reserve a Princes’ seat, call 722-3474.
• At Brasserie Gigi, holiday menu items include butter-poached lobster and chocolate mousse. The downtown restaurant is also selling glasses of rosé for $6 apiece. For more information, call 722-6393 or visit brasseriegigi.com
• Candice Mahala of Bistro Toulouse says her Mt. Pleasant restaurant is beefing up its 5 p.m.-9:30 p.m. festivities with French music and party favors. Menu specials will include pot au feu, mussels and housemade sausages. To learn more, call 216-3434 or visit bistrotoulouse.com.