A bistro/cafe with both indoor and outdoor seating, L'Opera Bouffe is straight out of a scene from Bizet's "Carmen". The lights are just dim enough to make it romantic dinner if you want it to be, but light enough for it to feel comfortable if you're just there with a friend.
The menu is small with about 5 choices for appetizers, 5 entrees (one dish each: vegetarian, chicken, fish, lamb, beef) and 11 desserts-- now that's my kind of restaurant! The menu changes seasonally.
I started with the salmon carpaccio which was out of this world. It was flavored with a hint of lemon and topped with thin slices of cheese. Each sumptuous bite melted in my mouth. One of my friends had the courgettes (zucchini) stuffed with minced veal which was quite tasty. The meat was juicy and flavored with just the right amount of spices.
For my main course, I had the fish which was lightly battered and sauteed in sweet and sour sauce. It was accompanied with rice and a side of mixed vegetables. Another friend had the lamb which turned out to be lamb meatballs cooked in an oriental-style and accompanied with cucumbers in yogurt sauce and rice. Not quite what she expected, but it was still very good.
L'Opera Bouffe is known for its melt-in-your-mouth desserts. They were out of creme brulee which is supposed to be fantastic, but between the three of us, we sampled the the chocolate parfait pie, tarte tatin with gruyere creme sauce and the flan. I can highly recommend all three, but be forewarned, they are very rich!
The waitstaff is very friendly and speak English. They come by often enough so that you don't feel like they've forgotten you, but not so frequent that you feel rushed. Just the perfect pace if you want to relax, unwind and enjoy a good meal and a nice bottle of wine.
Appetizers are about $8-12, entrees $16-22 and dessert $6-8. Wine starts at about $26 a bottle. All means accompanied with french bread.
For more information, see L'Opera Bouffe's website at: http://loperabouffe.pagesjaunes.ch/.