If five years ago, someone told me that Plano would grow to be a thriving restaurant and nightlife district, I probably would’ve never believed them. What I love about Legacy West are the many opportunities for shoppers, diners, and consumers to embrace a variety of world cultures. At Legacy West’s newest addition, Toulouse, Planoites are offered a wide selection of fine, authentic French cuisine.
Toulouse is the product of Lombardi Family Concepts, the founders of Taverna. It is the second of three Lombardi restaurants to open in the Legacy West development thus far (the third being Kai, which is set to open later this spring.)
On a Thursday evening, my best friend Nick and I dine in Legacy West’s newest addition. Upon arrival, we are promptly greeted by a hostess, who appears to be in great spirits. Although my reservation has somehow managed to have gotten lost, we are welcomed with open arms and seated immediately.
The restaurant’s walls, ceilings, and floors are decorated in white and silver. Each shelf of the bar is stacked to the brim with fine wines and pricey liquors. It is a replication of an authentic French brasserie.
Moments after being seated, we are approached by a server, who is clearly knowledgeable of the menu, ready to make suggestions based on our tastes.
To kick things off, we both order Old Fashioneds. Traditionally, an Old Fashioned consists of bitters, rye whiskey or brandy. Although the drink is served in a tiny glass, the amount served was satisfying. It is a very strong cocktail, so it is best sipped slowly.
For my second drink, I order the Blackberry Mule. I had previously tried the Blackberry Mule at Taverna and it immediately became a favorite of mine. I am thrilled to see that Lombardi brought it over to Toulouse. The Blackberry Mule is heavy on fruit flavor, but not too strong on booze. It’s like drinking a pressed berry juice with a ginger kick.
When it came time to order appetizers, we ordered the Escargot Bourguignonne and the Oysters Rockefeller. When Nick and I order appetizers we typically take a little bit off of each others’ plates, and that night was no different.
I had never tried escargot before, but I am quite surprised by how much I enjoy Toulouse’s. They are easy to chew and taste no different from most kinds of seafood. Plus, the garlic sauce they come coated in adds an absolutely divine kick.
What I like about Toulouse’s oysters is the fact that they aren’t super greasy and oily, like those of most restaurants. Albeit light on oil, Toulouse’s oysters are still very hearty and flavorful.
For my main course, I order the Duck Two Ways. The Duck Two Ways is a plate containing Long Island Duck Breast, both grilled and fried, compressed apples, potato dauphinoise, and dark cherry demi. I find the duck to be delicious beyond my expectations, and the pairing with the fruits allow for sweet touches.
Like the appetizers, Nick and I go splitzies on our desserts. We ordered soufflé and crème brûlée. It was my first time trying soufflé, and I wasn’t expecting it to be so egg-heavy. It’s good, but perhaps I probably would enjoy it more around breakfast time.
The crème brûlée, on the other hand, is incredible. The caramelized coating is crisp to the touch, and the custard filling is thick, creamy, and consistent; not at all sloppy or oozy. Toulouse’s crème brûlée is probably the most well put-together version of the dish I have ever had the pleasure to try.
Overall, I feel Toulouse is a fabulous addition to Legacy West. It is the closest thing to a French brasserie one can get in Dallas and makes for a remarkable cultural experience. Lombardi Family Concepts can do no wrong, and they show no signs of slowing down.