Fabrice and Mairead Buschtetz differed on their opinions as to the timing of a move from France, but it was clear from the start of their relationship in the 1980s that America was going to be an eventual destination.
“I married a man born on the wrong side of the Atlantic,” Mairead said. “He wanted to come in 1988 fresh out of culinary school, but I am Irish, not French. I had to learn French first, learn about good wine and food, and until I had that I was not going anywhere.”
Coming to America
After nearly 30 years of Fabrice being a chef in France, the Buschtetzes came to Arizona in 2013.
Francophile diners of the East Valley have benefited ever since they opened Cuisine and Wine Bistro in Gilbert in 2015. There are few authentic French-based restaurants in the Valley.
“A lot people have been to France and want to taste the food again,” Mairead said. “Others have read about it [and]want to experience French food the best they can, and we are the place to come for that type of food experience.”
The restaurant, which offers 163 kinds of wine, 35 of which are also available by the glass, is run by son Steven and daughter Laura. Chef Fabrice has concentrated on the sister restaurant in Chandler since 2016.
A key to success comes from the freshness of the food, including homemade sauces, which Fabrice has worked to perfect over the past three decades. It can be felt from the cheese boards to the crème brûlée.
The signature dish from Chef Fabrice is the escargots, a garlicky dish of snails with a toasted crouton. Five main dishes are offered. And there are desserts with brûlées and soufflés.
For the Buschetzes, it is everything they dreamed of when they finally made the move to the States.
“I must admit he’s been right,” Mairead said. “I wasn’t sure about coming here and putting the escargot on the menu. He said people would trust us enough. He was right about it.”
Cuisine and Wine Bistro
1422 W. Warner Road, Gilbert
Hours: Tue.-Thu. 3-10 p.m.,
Fri.-Sat. 3-11 p.m., closed Sun.-Mon.