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Chef Denise Harris Welcomed At Marie's Bistro

October 17, 2016 by Manny Chavez

Loyal patrons of Marie’s Bistro in Blue Mountain Beach missed Marie’s Nasri's presence in the kitchen since she had a tragic fall earlier this year. But the restaurant recently got a boost from the hiring of Chef Denise Harris.

Chef Denise, who comes by way of St. Louis, has fit right in with Marie’s method for restaurant success: make it fresh, make it from scratch, and above all, make the customer happy.

Chef Denise is a graduate of L’Ecole Culinaire in St. Louis, worked for two restaurants there, and worked as a corporate chef prior to her move to SoWal. Although she will miss her “Cards” (St. Louis Cardinals), she welcomes the change of scenery and is diving in head first to enhance the overall Marie’s Bistro experience.

Working with Marie and her husband Hanie, the team is in the process of revamping Marie’s menu. Three dishes that have quickly become favorites are: The Bistro Burger (Angus one-half pound burger with caramelized onions, sweet chili bacon and smoked gouda cheese; Fish Tacos (creole-seasoned Mahi Mahi, grilled and topped with cilantro lime cream sauce and Pico de Gallo); and the Tuna Udon, seared tuna with Japanese noodle topped with black and white sesame seeds and sweet chili soy sauce).

Sunday Brunch features Chef Denise’s favorite: grilled flank steak, eggs, hollandaise and grilled pita. These new menu items will have you smiling at the table (between bites) with a real appreciation for Chef Denise’s fresh take on Marie’s cuisine.

Hanie and Marie have decided to throttle back on their catering business in order to concentrate on their restaurant, but they will still offer catering and they will still host corporate functions. With the coming of football season, they are currently working on both college and professional football specials that have yet to be announced. Old favorites like karaoke, live bands, Sushi Sunday, and Sunday Brunch are still in place with Sunday Brunch to include sushi on the menu. Please call Marie’s for current days and times.

Marie saw limited activity recently when she attended the Bloody Mary Festival and was proud to take home third place at the competition. She cannot stand for any length of time, but is now preparing from home some limited baking items such as bread pudding, various desserts, and quiche’s. Always up front and personal, Hanie remains the ultimate greeter and seems to know just about everyone who walks in the door. His enthusiasm is contagious and if you walk in with a scowl, you’re sure to walk out with at least the semblance of a smiley face.

Although they have slowed down their catering business, they still “cater” to their everyday restaurant customer, preparing meals to their wishes. Making their own sauces, breads, and pastries using fresh ingredients, they strive to do this and still offer affordable pricing.

Although the Marie’s Bistro menu, hours of operation, and daily specials are all works in progress, the basic hours are: Lunch, 11-2:30 Tuesday-Saturday; Happy Hour, Tuesday- Sunday, 4-6 p.m., with Dinner 4 p.m.-until. Sunday Brunch, 11-2:30 p.m.; Please visit their web site at www.mariesbistro.com for updated information or call 850-278-6856. Address: 2260 Scenic 30A West, Blue Mountain Beach (across from For The Health of It and Big Daddy’s Bikes).

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Manny Chavez

Manny and his wife Kris moved to the Emerald Coast in 1992. After 16 years as staff photographer for The Houston Post, Manny has successfully transitioned to creative weddings and beach portraits.

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