Carole Robert closed Mount Pleasant favorite Annie’s Bistro in August 2018, but the chef is back with a new name and location, where she’s serving the made-from-scratch country-style French fare that locals fell in love with back in 2013. Ville Sainte Bistro, located at 1035 Johnnie Dodds Blvd., is now open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday.
Ville Sainte means “Holy City” in French — it’s a fitting name for a Parisian-style restaurant reliant on South Carolina ingredients.
“I go shopping every day — that’s why I’m not open for lunch,” Robert said. “Unless I’m making a stew or a soup, everything is made to order, and it’s only myself and my sous chef. Being a scratch kitchen, it takes time.”
Robert said it took “a lot of work” to clean and renovate the space previously occupied by Cinco Tex-Mex before she opened Ville Sainte with her husband Mark Manly and business partner Philippe Bernier on Bastille Day in July 2020. The large restaurant has 88 seats inside, where it’s operating at 50% capacity, and 75 outside under a covered patio.
The restaurant’s menu changes weekly, Robert said, but look for dishes like steak frites, shrimp scampi and duck confit.
“We are very moderately priced, and I change my menu probably 2-3 times a week. We are very very famous for escargot, French onion soup and all the meats we prepare,” Robert said. “We’re cooking with love, and people say when they take the first bite they feel the love. I’m the most comfortable when I’m in my kitchen.”
Former Top Chef contestant and Tarvin Seafood shrimp aficionado Emily Hahn has high praise for the Mount Pleasant restaurant, where she recently celebrated her birthday.
“The place, though spacious, is still cozy and inviting; lots of art on the walls collected over the years by Carole and Mark that makes you feel as if you are in the heart of France — or possibly Carole’s home,” said Hahn, pointing to the escargot, salmon with Miss Paula’s shrimp and the French onion soup as some of her favorites on the menu.
“The food is approachable, and there is something for everyone, whether you are heading in for a snack and glass of wine or going to work through the entire menu with friends.”
For more information or to make a reservation, call (843) 388-5778.