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A&E >  Food

Celebrate Bastille Day in Spokane with French-inspired cuisine

By Adriana Janovich For The Spokesman-Review

On July 14, 1789, an angry mob stormed the Bastille, a medieval fortress prison in Paris, signaling the start of the French Revolution and eventual overthrow of the monarchy.

Today, in the City of Light, Bastille Day is celebrated with a morning parade down the Champs-Élysées to the Place de la Concord and nighttime fireworks at the Eiffel Tour.

Here in the Inland Northwest, Francophile foodies can celebrate liberty, equality and fraternity by indulging in French-inspired cuisine – without heading overseas.

• Sip a classic and simple French 75, reportedly named for a World War I-era 75 mm field gun. Just gin, bubbles and citrus, this refreshing cocktail packs a punch. Also simple and classic: steak frites.

Magnolia American Brasserie serves both the drink and the dish. Its version features a flat iron steak topped with Bernaise butter and garlicky frites. 110 S. Madison St. On the web:

• Mussels are listed under the “shareables” section of the menu at downtown Spokane’s iconic Steam Plant restaurant, but you won’t want to. You will, however, want to soak up all of the lemony, herbed, white wine-butter broth with baguette slices and, when they’re gone, slurp up the remaining liquid with a spoon, not wasting a drop. 159 S. Lincoln St. On the web:

• Escargots drenched in garlic butter and herbs, and served with a baguette in a traditional, six-hole dish, are a house specialty at Vine and Olive, 2037 N. Main St., Coeur d’Alene. On the web:

• The baked brie at 1898 Public House features a mixed berry compote, agave glaze and candied walnuts. It comes with grilled crostini. 2010 W. Waikiki Road. On the web:

• The Parisian-style gnocchi comes with mushrooms with truffle cheese sauce at the new South Perry neighborhood bistro Française. Peut-être start with the Lyon-style onion soup, topped with a crouton and toasted Gruyère and Parmesan. 928 S. Perry St. On the web:

• The baguette sandwiches at downtown Spokane’s Atticus Coffee and Gifts make for quick and easy snacks and lunches, and come in several combinations: mozzarella, red pepper and basil; pesto, white cheddar and sun-dried tomatoes; smoked turkey, goat cheese and roasted red pepper; and (my favorite) ham and Gruyère. Pro tip: get it toasted. 222 N. Howard St. On the web:

• The croque monsieur ham-and-cheese sandwich, served warmed, is a popular lunch staple at Madeleine’s Café and Patisserie, 415 W. Main Ave. Add an egg and make it a croque madame. On the web:

• Plenty of local places sell French macarons, meringue-based sandwich cookies made with almond flour – and not to be confused with coconut macaroons. But miFlavour’s are just that much bigger. In fact, the modern French bakery uses specially designed, trademarked, award-winning packaging just to fit its larger-than-average macarons. Find an assortment of flavors – from chocolate and pistachio to London fog and rosewater. Look, also, for 3-inch lemon meringue and fresh fruit tarts, croissant sandwiches – and more. 3403 E. Sprague Ave. On the web:

• Find perfectly laminated croissants and chocolate croissants – aka pain au chocolat – at the Grain Shed. On Fridays, look, also, for crusty baguettes specially made with sel gris. 1026 E. Newark Ave. On the web:

• Chaps is known – among other things – for its buttery, flaky almond croissants. 4237 S. Cheney-Spokane Road. On the web:

• Cracking into the burnt sugar crust of rich and crème brûlée is almost as satisfying as finishing the signature dessert itself at Clinkerdagger, 621 W. Mallon Ave. On the web:

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