A 28-seat French BYOB restaurant is set to open on Chestnut Avenue in Hampden.The restaurant, Aromes, could open as soon as Feb. 7, according to its chef and owner, Steve Monnier.
Aromes will operate with a fixed-price menu, Monnier said. Diners will choose either three courses (for $45) or six courses (for $65), and guests will choose from either an early or late seating, he said.
A native of the French city of Reims, Monnier started his U.S. cooking career in Southern California, where he met his wife, Florence. When the couple had their son, Hugo, who is now 18 months, they decided to relocate to the Maryland, where Florence Monnier has family.
Monnier said his menu will be seasonal and will emphasize vegetables over meats. He gave such examples as cauliflower risotto with shrimp and lemon balm jus, roasted turnips with vanilla oil and ricotta gnocchi with Jerusalem artichoke barigoule and brown butter.
Meat will be used mainly as an intensifier, Monnier said. Crispy chicken skin, for instance, will be used to flavor an entree of braised salsify with Szechuan peppers.
Aromes is at 3520 Chestnut Ave. For information call 410-235-0035 or visit aromesrestaurant.com. The restsaurant's name, which is French for "aromas," is pronounced as "a-rome," without the final "s."