To us, a true homecoming is when one returns to the place of origin wiser, with sincere affection, and with a little bit of wisdom to give in return for earlier lessons learned. This sort of homecoming has occurred at renowned Boston Restaurant Bistro du Midi. The original chef who opened the flower of a French bistro abutting the Boston Public Gardens has returned. After spending two years growing and gaining an appreciation for sourcing locally (especially from our New England coast), Executive Chef Robert Sisca is once again heading the restaurant he opened in 2009.

Executive Chef and Partner at Bistro du Midi, Robert Sisca

Sisca is not a stranger to the NorthEast. The passionate chef and family man started his life taking a bite out of the big apple, living in Long Island until high school. He then traversed over to Pennsylvania and eventually landed in Rhode Island at Johnson & Wales where his career in creative cooking was founded.

Talent and training opened doors for Sisca, working in famed New York restaurants and eventually gaining him access to the keys to the well-known Bistro du Midi. A dream location formally held by Excelsior and Biba of Famed Chef Lydia Shire.

For seven years, Sisca meticulously created some of the best French fare in Boston. His food was not only pretty but damn good, making Bistro du Midi a staple for both heavy-hitting business dinners, savored luncheons, and romantic nights. In 2013, he became a partner in the thriving French restaurant. But, just a few years later he decided to leave that charming restaurant where his career flourished, and that was his culinary home.

Robert Sisca isn’t just an award-winning Chef; he’s also a husband and father. He and his family had planted their roots in Rhode Island, meaning he had a three-hour daily commute to Boston. So, when corporate chef position in Rhode Island came across Sisca’s desk, it made sense in so many ways. He would run three restaurants in Providence and help to create and build new ones. Not only was it a great opportunity, but one that allowed him to be closer to home with his wife Bree and two young boys, Hunter and Jameson.

In February 2016, Sisca started his new gig and in April of that year, he helped to open Garde East on Martha’s Vineyard. Within five weeks, he and his team took an empty house and turned it into a fully-functioning restaurant. A marvel of an accomplishment in such a short time in the restaurant industry. And this wasn’t just any eatery, but one that served the likes of President Obama and his family, and other well-known patrons.

During those two seasons of cooking on the vineyard, Sisca grew as a chef. He used the opportunity to explore new flavors and cultures, as well as to connect with the local farming and the fishing community.

Change, experimentation, and growth is critical to success, and they are all components of a great homecoming. The time was right for Chef Sisca to come home the beloved Boston restaurant he opened in 2009. Bistro du Midi will always be a French restaurant, for that we are grateful. We’re even more thankful for the seasonal seafood and local farms Chef Sisca is now infusing into the restaurant. Sisca tells us he’s excited about adding more Coastal New England Flavors to the menu, but most of all he is, “Having a lot of fun and just creating damn good food that I love to cook!”

Recently, we were lucky enough to taste the New England Coastal influence at Bistro du Midi and enjoy a Chef’s Dinner by this talented, humble, and all around nice guy. For all of you foodies, here’s what you’ve been waiting to see -Food picks of Chef Sisca’s fantastic dinner, of course with perfect wine pairings.

The evening started with sparking wine and a killer cocktail called the Juniper Baie, made of Bombay Sapphire, Chartreuse, lime, and basil. If you love herbal cocktails, this is a great one to get your summer season started!

We enjoyed passed canapés as we sipped our cocktails and chatted. My favorite canapé, which will appear on the menu as an appetizer was the summer foie gras dish- foie gras torchon, strawberry, brioche, and sweet foie gras ice cream. I already have a date on the books to head back in and enjoy this heavenly dish again!

The wine pairings were perfect, not only did they complement each course, but also the free-flowing and fun conversations. We were lucky enough to have Master Sommelier, Brahm Callahan, pouring and describing the wine to us.

The “Amuse,” which in French cuisine is not a first course, but a glimpse into the Chef’s culinary style, was a knock-out, absolutely stunning! A live scallop rested in its shell, along with shaved Australian black truffles, Meyer lemon, and the most dainty coriander blooms. Those delicate little flowers were not only beautiful but also added a flavor that completed the dish.

This palate-pleaser set the tone and expectation for the rest of the meal, which I can vouch was spectacular!

Blue Fin Crudo -Santa Barbara Uni, Pekin Duck Cracklings, Tobiko, Yuzu Dashi

Ora King Salmon – Fresh Green Almonds, Rhubarb, Jumbo White Asparagus, Green Garlic Emulsion

Spanish Octopus – Iberico Ham, Shishito Peppers, Bacon Aioli

Hopkins South Down Lamb – Smoked Belly Agnolotti, Morel Mushrooms, Spring Peas, Black Garlic Bordelaise

Rose Genoise – Raspberry Creme, Pistachio, Lychee Sorbet

Executive Chef Robert Sisca crafted a meal that was not only beautiful but delectable. He tells us creating is the best part of his job and that chefs are artists and they express themselves on the plate. The proof of that statement is evident in these photos.

We asked Sisca where he gets his creativity. He still has that three-hour daily car ride, and a lot of his inspiration comes to him in that time. He uses that time alone to reflect on previous dinners, countries he’s visited, or a cookbook he may have read. And then after he’s done, when he arrives home, he’s grateful to see his two amazing kids and unbelievably supportive wife Bree. He says without her support, he wouldn’t be where he is today.

So, where is he? Besides Sisca’s returning to Bistru du Midi, Sisca has more exciting news! On June 21st, the award-winning chef appears on the Food Network’s Beat Bobby Flay!

You can join the viewing party at Bistro du Midi and cheer on Sisca as he and Bobby Flay go head to head! This sounds like a pretty fun night-eating amazing food and watching this talented chef on TV. Now, that’s a homecoming party for sure.

Bistro du Midi

272 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02116 – (617) 426-7878