Marc and Evelyne Penvenne have been proud to serve the Greenwich community since 1994 at Méli-Mélo creperie and Méli-Mélo catering since 2006, but their story actually began in 1990 when Marc was general manager at Versailles cafe.
Greenwich Avenue has seen many changes over the years and when Marc spotted the “for sale” sign posted on Versailles’ front door, nostalgia kicked in. He could not see another Greenwich institution go.
In an effort to evolve with the changing landscape, Bistro V was born in 2013 following a facelift and name shift to emphasize an expanded dinner menu and new international wine list. The interior of the restaurant is proudly inspired by the classic French bistro Marc and his wife remember from growing up in France.
It is a cozy local hangout they share with their regular patrons from Méli-Mélo and newcomers alike. The location has become a destination in town for photoshoots and a popular backdrop for Instagram influencer content.
A highlight is that Bistro V still offers the same great pastries and viennoiserie from the original Versailles bakery located only a few streets away from the restaurant. Each morning a fresh delivery of warm baked goods is delivered to Meli-Melo and Bistro V. The original pastry chef, Gilberto, hand-delivers them warm from the oven each morning, a tradition he’s carried out with the business since 1980.
All of the same natural recipes, brought from Paris, France over four decades ago, are still used at the bakery today. All of the ingredients are fresh, no additives, preservatives, or artificial colorings are used which gives these delectable treats an authentic French taste.
A new menu launched during July which includes international dishes with a French twist and premium cocktails. For many years Bistro V has maintained a bustling weekend brunch that features organic egg omelets and relaunched its bottomless Mimosa or Bloody Mary brunch deal once in-dinging reopened during the pandemic.
Patrons can still enjoy their favorite French classics like salade niçoise, croque monsieur, French onion soup, quiche lorraine, steak frites, moules frites, and beef bourguignon as well as new dishes like the seafood saffron risotto, gluten-free pasta with vegetables, and mahi-mahi fish tacos with housemade chips and guacamole. Marc's favorite dishes are the risotto, seafood trio which includes crab cake, Bronzino, and tuna over vegetables and the Buddha bowl.
Hot summer dishes like the Brussel sprout salad with shrimp, lobster roll, PEI oysters, and shrimp jalapeno poppers (which might literally be the hottest dish on Greenwich Avenue) are regularly washed down with delicious handcrafted premium cocktails and the top rosé wine from France.
Regulars order the Hibiscus Margarita, Cucumber Mojito, and Bubbleberry all made with fresh ingredients and fresh-squeezed juice from the popular Meli-Melo juice bar which was also awarded by ‘Best of Greenwich’ this year. Note, the Piña colada deluxe is served in a pineapple and almost looks too good to drink along with the other specialty drinks served in elegant glassware.
Small bites along with cocktails and wines are discounted during Happy Hour to encourage off-peak dining since the restaurant remains open all day until 10:00 p.m. seven days a week. During its standard breakfast, lunch, and dinner hours the restaurant is packed with a mix of families, couples, and singles new to the area.
In partnership with the Town of Greenwich, Bistro V was able to expand its outdoor dining area to accommodate customers who are not yet ready for indoor dining due to COVID precautions or simply want to enjoy the outdoor weather and glorious people watching on Greenwich Avenue. Reservations are not necessary but encouraged Thursday through Sunday.
Bistro V is located at 339 Greenwich Avenue, a few doors from the original Versailles cafe location, and it’s sister restaurant Meli-Melo (362 Greenwich Avenue). These two beloved restaurants have allowed Marc and Evelyne to develop relationships with families in town for generations and they plan to keep these establishments open as long as possible while the Town's business community continues to evolve.
Keep your eyes peeled for Marc next time you're taking an early evening drive in town. When this restauranter isn't at work he's enjoying and discovering the immaculate beauty and trails that Greenwich has to offer while riding his bike.