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March 16, 2004 > Papillon Restaurant Francias

Papillon Restaurant Francias

A Banquet for Body and Soul

A tranquil and stately "butterfly" has been calling the Niles area of Fremont home for over 20 years. Perched on Mission Boulevard just west of the entrance to Niles Canyon, near the Sullivan Underpass, Papillon - the French name for Butterfly - has been quietly serving lunch and dinner patrons from near and far with elegance and panache. Fine dining and attention to customer service are not just words here. Diners are welcomed graciously and seated in either the traditional style dining room, tastefully decorated with muted tones or the atrium that glows softly in the evening or allows filtered sunlight through an ivy covered glass solarium for the lunch crowd. Groups can take advantage of a spacious banquet room seating up to 70 shares the fine dining and service of the restaurant.

Gentle attention to detail by wait staff means that visitors are seated quickly and white table cloths are neat and ready, garnished with fresh flowers and sparkling silverware. Whether on a tight schedule or dining out in leisure, there is an unmistakable undercurrent of efficiency without pressure. The attentive staff seems to know when diners require attention and are otherwise invisible. The rule here is that customers are the primary focus of attention and they deserve the best from the time they enter and receive a courteous greeting until they depart satisfied with a pleasant wave farewell.

Working with fresh seasonal ingredients, the menu at Papillon takes advantage of each season but also lists perennial favorites such as Roasted Rack of Lamb and tender Beef Wellington with a flakey crust that doesn't disappoint! Entrees can be preceded by "starters" that will entice the eyes when presented and taste buds when consumed. Papillon includes specialties such as escargot, frog legs, Truffles and Cognac Duck Pat#233;, and a French Onion soup that is baked with puff pastry in a traditional style seldom seen in the area and difficult to prepare. Again, Papillon doesn't disappoint!

In keeping with fine dining and a superb meal, presented and served with style, Papillon maintains a large selection of fine wines, many available by the glass. The collection is extensive and spans the gamut from domestic winners to foreign favorites. Australian wines are becoming quite popular here. For those who lean towards beer, Papillon is ready to please serving premium domestic and foreign brews. A full bar is available to take any order.

Salads, appetizers and the main course accompanied by a fine wine leads to the piece de resistance - dessert. This is one place that diners are cautioned to leave room for a some Papillon magic. An assortment of wonderful sweets such as Cr#233;me Brulee with Mango Sorbet, Cheesecake and Flourless Chocolate Torte or seasonal fruit are excellent finishing touches, but the choice becomes impossible when considering the Grand Marnier or Chocolate Suffle, Baked Alaska (tell your waitperson about these choices when ordering since they require approximately 20 minutes to prepare) or watch a tableside show when ordering a flamb#233; dish of Cherries Jubilee, Strawberries or Bananas Flamb#233; or traditional Crep#233; Suzettes.

Fortunately, Papillon has been consistently pleasing diners for years and remains ready to serve guests for many years to come. While menu choices are difficult, peace of mind is retained with the knowledge that the same quality food, superb presentation and gracious service are ready when you are. Bon Appetit!

Papillon Restaurant
37296 Mission Blvd., Fremont
(510) 793-6331

Special Note: Frederico Domondon, the "Singing Artist" will be presenting an evening of song at Papillon Saturday, March 27 from 8 p.m. - 9 p.m. His impressionist paintings are on display at Papillon and he will also host a reception at Papillon from noon - 5 p.m. on the same day. Please RSVP if possible, but walk-ins are okay.

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