Chez Peres claims to be “Northern Michigan’s only authentic French Bistro.” It was only two blocks from where I was staying in Traverse City, and we were happy to eat there more than once. It’s right by the Boardman River.

The space is small but tastefully put together, and the blue walls have a rustic feel while echoing the hue of the river. For my first meal, a lunch, I ordered the lentil crêpe:

It was filled with spiced lentils, bacon and potatoes and topped with a little hollandaise sauce. It was extremely tasty, hearty and filling. My dad said that he had never had any dish with lentils that tasted as good as this. I was barely hungry for dinner that night.

For my breakfast visit I ordered the salmon on bagel halves.

The salmon was perfectly smoked and not in the least fishy. The bagels were also toasted and buttered before being spread with cream cheese, making the sandwich even better. Once again, I was barely hungry for my next meal five hours later.

My stepmom Jacqui ordered a salmon omelette, the Oeufs Norwegian, which was on an English muffin and topped with liberal quantities of hollandaise. I can have hollandaise in small amounts (e.g. on the crêpe above) but I found the quantity in her dish unpalatable (but, as a hollandaise fan, she loved it).

My dad ordered a special, the Oeufs Moroccan, a mixed cheese omelette topped with a spiced tomato sauce. I tried some, and it was excellent with the richness of the cheese perfectly balanced by the sharp sauce.

Jonathan also found numerous items he liked. He first ordered the Crêpe Georgette with pineapple and caramel. The caramel was buttery and delicious, and Jonathan had no problem polishing off the crêpe. The next visit he had French bread topped with banana and Nutella (from the children’s menu) which was so good that I’ll have to make it at home sometime.

For some reason the current online menu (see link above) is missing many of the items we ordered a couple weeks ago. I’m not sure what is exactly on the current menu, but we never went wrong with anything we ordered.

As this is a French bistro / pattiserrie I had to order dessert on our lunch visit.

This is a tart filled with dark (but not overly rich) chocolate filling with plenty of toasted hazelnuts inside. The unsweetened whipped cream was an excellent counterpoint. It’s probably fortunate I don’t live anywhere near this place or I’d eat far too many of these.

Chez Peres also serves dinner. Based on bottles around the establishment they have an excellent wine and beer selection, including import and microbrewed beers.

I very much look forward to our next trip to Traverse City and revisiting many restaurants, not the least of which would be Chez Peres. This also makes me think we should cross the river to get to Cleveland’s Le Petit Triange more often to get this kind of food.

Chez Pères on Urbanspoon

  • Eric

    The french food looks very very good. Any good suggestions for local places (in cleveland) for some French dining?

  • Ben

    There’s Le Petit Triangle in Ohio City (hyperlinked above) as well as Taste on Lee Rd. We weren’t crazy about Taste the first couple visits, but they’ve updated the menu and we’d like to give it another try. There’s also L’Albatros, which has gotten pretty good reviews but we haven’t been there yet. Le Bistro du Beaujolais in Olmsted Falls was also really good years ago, but we haven’t been back. I like French a lot better than Sarah does, so we eat French pretty rarely.

  • Henry Morgenstein

    This is Ben’s dad — who is no good at “describing” food experiences — but Ben is very good. He describes well the delicious dishes I ate there. I’m here to say “It tastes good! Eat there when you come to Traverse City.“
    I often read Ben’s blog & I salivate & wish I lived in Cleveland. In this case, I can look at the beautiful pictures — and remember the experience. Everyone who comes to visit me will be taken to eat at Chez Peres.

  • Jeaneene

    To Henry, who said: “Everyone who comes to visit me will be taken to eat at Chez Peres.”

    Can I come visit you? ;)