Le Desales - French favorites in a cozy space

Le Desales - French favorites in a cozy space

Le Desales is named after the alley it sits in, across from the Mayflower hotel. What it brings to diners is French classics and Chef Raphael Francois’ family favorites in a cozy but modern space - something we were excited to go see for ourselves.

As we turned onto Desales , we were tempted to sit out on the cute patio but decided to go inside instead as it was a chilly fall morning. The restaurant itself was warm and cozy, colorful in design, intimate but also social. I could see myself coming here on a date night or with a small group of friends.

 Cozy interiors

Cozy interiors

We began our brunch with some recovery coffees while gazing into the window overlooking the charcuterie station. We were not drinking that morning, but their brunch selection includes large-batch cocktails (including mimosas) that are available by the glass or pitcher, and Kir Royales and Bloody Marys by the glass. Of course, they also have an extensive wine selection. I’ll probably go back for the pitchers, which are a great deal at $38 -$42, serving five.

Brunch at Desales DC

I was craving something comforting and decided on the Croque Monsieur, while Kris got the steak and eggs (which came highly recommended by our server). We also shared the truffle fries with harissa cottage cheese sauce.

The Croque Monsieur sandwich, a French classic ham and cheese, came with a side salad, and was the perfect size. Perfectly toasted, not overly rich (as some cane be), and super tasty – I’d definitely go for this again! Kris’ steak and eggs were also cooked as requested and were a good balanced dish. The side fries are a healthy portion and were crispy and thin, but I didn’t really discern the harissa taste too much in the accompanying cottage cheese sauce, and we felt it was quite over priced at $16. Save the calories and the $$ for dessert instead!

To end, the rich and intense chocolate tart served with a scoop of espresso ice cream is decadent and absolutely satisfying for a chocolate lover.  We polished this off within seconds. The Crème Brulee looked incredible too – but we were too full and will be trying it at our next visit instead.

 Deliciously decadent chocolate tart

Deliciously decadent chocolate tart

All in all, this was a well-executed meal that shows strong knowhow by the chef, who has Michelin restaurant experience in his background.  Service is charming and warm, and the menus reflect dishes that will satisfy safe diners as well as those wanting more creative spins. There’s definitely more than enough to make Le Desales worth a visit, especially if you are seeking refinement at reasonable prices. I am looking forward to going back to try their charcuterie and dinner menu!  

Check out their website HERE for more details.

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