Anchored by the cuisine and inspired design from the South of France, FRANCINE is a highly-anticipated fine dining experience and the brainchild of the acclaimed restaurateur Laurent Halasz, who is best known for his success as the founder and creator of FIG & OLIVE, where the food is exquisite and the atmosphere is incredible.
FRANCINE opened mid-August in the luxury wing at Scottsdale Fashion Square. The brand new, beautifully-designed French restaurant is located near other notable fine dining establishments, including Nobu, Toca Madera and Ocean 44 and is reminiscent of dining in Paris.
“FRANCINE has been a long time coming for me, and I personally couldn’t be prouder or more excited to show our guests what we have created here in this extraordinary space,” Halasz said. “From the materials we selected with designer Olya Volkova in the design and building process of the restaurant, to the flavors and dishes we are serving, we have taken great care to ensure our guests feel that true French Riviera experience.”
This ingredient and flavor-centric approach is the magic behind the delicious flavors featured in his dishes.
FRANCINE is named after Halasz’s beloved mother, the inspiration behind his notable culinary journey. This makes the French restaurant much more personal, inviting guests into his childhood with family, recipes and a sense of home.
Childhood recipes from his mother were always widely balanced with fresh herbs and seasoning to create vibrant and clean food. This ingredient and flavor-centric approach is the magic behind the delicious flavors featured in his dishes.
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“What I really learned from a young age was selecting ingredients and vegetables at the market and not oversaturating them with spice, but making them shine by their natural taste,” Halasz said. For instance, he explained that there are many variations of tomatoes, and they are all used differently, whether that be through texture or how they are cut or prepared.
Halasz, who is now a Scottsdale resident himself, strives to bring a unique experience to Scottsdale Fashion Square. Valley native and classically French-trained Chef Brian Archibald will lead FRANCINE’s culinary team. Archibald brings more than three decades of culinary leadership experience, including tenures at some of the Valley’s finest restaurants and resorts. Chef Archibald said his longstanding relationships with farms and purveyors will allow the new FRANCINE restaurant to showcase some extraordinary dishes that are sourced from around the world.
Everything you will find on the menu at FRANCINE will be similar to the flavor profiles and coastal cuisine that you might find right now in the French Riviera. Just as the seasons will change, so will our flavors.
“FRANCINE’s flavor profile is Mediterranean, or, as we like to say, the ‘food of the sun.’ Everything you will find on the menu at FRANCINE will be similar to the flavor profiles and coastal cuisine that you might find right now in the French Riviera. Just as the seasons will change, so will our flavors,” Chef Archibald said.
Guests at the FRANCINE restaurant can expect to enjoy a wonderful dinner menu featuring Striped Bass with lemon, eggplant and Picholine olives; Steak Tartare with lemon aioli, pickled mustard seeds, crispy shallots and egg yolk; and Bouillabaisse with a mussels and shrimp stew.
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Other favorites include Grilled Octopus, Zucchini Carpaccio, Salad Niçoise, Ratatouille Tart, Mushroom & Taleggio Pizza, Bone Marrow and Seared Duck a la Provencal. For lunch and afternoon hours, the menu will also offer a selection of salads, carpaccio and pizza, as well as informal and shareable dishes.
Our ICONIC LIFE Publisher Renee Dee, a big fan of Halasz’s Fig & Olive, recently dined at Francine after a long-anticipated wait for the opening and loved her experience. “I’ve always loved the ambience created at Fig & Olive: the aesthetic so resonates with me. At Francine, all I could feel was a warm hug of a peaceful, modern interior space flooded with lots of natural light accenting natural interiors,” she said. “The food was elegant and lovely, and I have no words for how much I loved the Ahi Tuna Tartare…wow!”
“In the South of France, Italy and Spain, we all love tomatoes, olives and figs. In fact, we share the passion of a number of ingredients, so there’s a lot of similarities in cuisine of the coastal region of this part of the world,” Halasz said.
The exciting French restaurant FRANCINE will initially open for dinner at 5 p.m., with lunch and brunch service beginning in the fall. In response to COVID-19, the restaurant will follow strict safety protocols and implement all the CDC guidelines, including social distancing.