Amuse Bouche

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17058 W. Bell Road, Surprise
623-322-8881

"Amuse Bouche," which means "amuse the mouth" is the free pre-meal bite high-end restaurants offer to their customers. It's an apt name for this adorable cafe, accented in fire engine red and black, because the generously portioned but elegant food served here will definitely amuse your mouth. A black metal Eiffel Tower behind the cash register has an American flag poking through it, which cleverly explains the French-inspired but mostly American menu created by chef-owners Snir and Kierstin Mor. You might have the Paul Bunyan-size meatloaf sandwich (topped with sashes of bacon and dripping with both onion aioli and sweet tomato glaze) or something as lady-like as the quiche, which I promise you will rank among the best you've ever had. The crust is perfection, the nutmeg-scented custard akin to silk. My favorite dish, so far, is the panani, served on excellent ciabatta and filled with leg of lamb, flank steak or pork tenderloin. Layered with Swiss cheese, caramelized onion and tomato, it's a warm, melting hunk of deliciousness. Daily specials might include steak frites or fish and chips, so generously portioned it would make sense to share. At night, the menu offers a handful of lunch-time favorites as well as pricier (but worth it) entrees. No matter what, save room for fabulous French desserts: dreamy chocolate mousse, creme caramel or plum-studded clafouti. Talk about amusing! Lunch M-Sa, Dinner Tu-Sa. $-$$$