New Broadmead bistro is bustling

Chef and owner Daryl Pope opened Artisan Bistro in Broadmead Village earlier this year

Chef and owner Daryl Pope

Chef and owner Daryl Pope

As two bags of fresh cut lettuce are hand delivered through the front door of the Artisan Bistro in Broadmead Village, it’s clear the restaurant’s commitment to local food is real.

Chef and owner Daryl Pope, 34, came to Broadmead because he wanted to open a place of his own, with French-inspired cuisine. The idea is to support local farmers and food producers as much as possible, Pope said.

It also adds a locally owned restaurant within walking distance to a Saanich neighbourhood.

Artisan Bistro opened in March, and getting the word out was as easy as setting up the patio. Pope purchased two dozen red patio seats, which attracted onlookers, and customers.

“The patio really helped us get established, it was a great patio season, people loved it,” Pope said.

Pope, of Sooke, is a former apprentice and chef who’s spent most of his cooking career in the Aerie Resort, Sooke Harbour House and Hotel Grand Pacific. He helped reopen the English Inn Resort in Esquimalt, and now has a place of his own.

Even with patio season over, the daily lunch rush continues to fill the bistro. On weekend nights, it’s better to make reservation.

The bistro is not just a place to eat, but also a place for coffee, says Pope. On those warm winter afternoons, the bistro can open its ceiling-high doors.

The French-style food is a complement to well-known Broadmead tenant and neighbour Romeo’s, a popular Italian-flavoured haunt.

Artisan Bistro is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.