Best New Restaurant


Foie gras may be a dirty word in Chicago, where the goose-liver delicacy has recently been banned, but in Overland Park it's still legal at the lively and attractive new Cassis. French-born restaurateur Patrick Quillec is a gambler, having opened and closed a handful of cafés in the past few years. Never down for long, he's back in top form at his newest bistro, named for the tiny, tart-tasting currant that was banned from commercial cultivation in the United States back in 1911. The currant is no longer a forbidden fruit, so Quillec and his son, Phillip -- the chef de cuisine in the Cassis kitchen -- are celebrating both the color and fresh astringency of the berry in their 65-seat dining room at Town Center Plaza. Dinner might start with lusty puffs of escargot gnocchi or a cup of foamy cappuccino soup; there's also a champagne bar, an excellent wine list and a menu of modern French dishes created by the Quillecs. The autumn menu includes halibut dripping with black-currant butter and a champagne-colored mousse called a Cassis Cloud. It's just like Paris, only closer.
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