Mimi's Cafe, a favorite French-inspired neighborhood bistro, announced the launch of its "French Revolution" brand reimage program, featuring a revolutionary new store-within-a-store restaurant concept designed to provide more unique and relevant dining experiences for guests. Debuting at Mimi's Valencia, Calif. location, the concept consists of a new French bakery, gourmet coffees, new menu, carryout section, grab-and-go display, full-service bar and six different French-inspired themed dining areas. The Valencia restaurant is the first of a three restaurant test program. To reflect the expanded offerings, Mimi's Cafe is changing its name for this test to Mimi's Bakery, Cafe & Bistro .

"With Mimi's new 'French Revolution' brand reimage program, we are essentially going back to our French-inspired roots while offering more relevant ways for our guests to experience what they love about Mimi's and meet their changing dining needs," says Mark Mears, President and Chief Concept Officer. "Mimi's new store-within-a-store business model is the first of its kind within the casual dining category."

"Bakery/Cafe is the fastest growing restaurant segment in the industry as today's guests are looking for a combination of high quality food, convenience and value within a unique and memorable dining experience," says Dennis Lombardi, Executive Vice President of Foodservice Strategies at WD Partners, a leading multi-unit restaurant design and development company that consulted on the project. "Given its French-inspired heritage and the long standing popularity of its signature Mimi's muffins, Mimi's is well-positioned to capitalize on this trend with expanded bakery, cafe and bistro offerings." 

The new French bakery and gourmet coffee offerings welcome guests with the aromas, sights and sounds of a classic Parisian bakery. Bakers will offer a wide array of bakery items such as chocolate, almond and all-butter croissants, French macarons, sweet and savory tarts, artisan breads, including French baguettes, batards, boules and fougasse, as well as Mimi's famous muffins. Baristas will serve new gourmet coffees including a bold French Roast blend as well as specialty coffee drinks including mochas, lattes, cappuccinos, flavored coffees and more.

Guests can enjoy a taste of France without ever leaving their neighborhood with Mimi's new breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, which feature a blend of classic American comfort foods and more adventurous, French-inspired dishes. For breakfast, a Croissant Egg Souffle, Fresh & Fit Smoked Ham and Vegetable Egg White Frittata, Fruit Crepes and Create-Your-Own Omelettes. During lunch, a French Tartine and Bistro Salad, Quatre Fromages Ravioli and Build-Your-Own Bistro Burgers. For dinner, new recipes such as Coq Au Vin – a classic French chicken dish – as well as new Le Bistro section; allowing guests an opportunity to customize a meal to fit their specific tastes, appetite and budget.

Available for both lunch and dinner, new Petite Plates are value priced and ideal to share, combine for a flavorful meal, or enjoy as a light snack. The menu features a variety of Flatbreads, Crispy Artichoke Hearts, Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms, and Seared Scallops with Bacon Corn Chowder.

The new carryout section offers a selection of dishes made to order along with the ease of a new grab-and-go display perfect for a quick breakfast, lunch or snack. After ordering from the bakery, coffee bar or carryout counter, guests can enjoy their coffee, pastry or sandwich in the new cafe seating area or take it to-go.

For further ease and time savings, guests can order ahead online or via their mobile phone at www.mimiscafe.com/onlineordering.aspx, or simply call the local restaurant.

The new full-service bistro bar consists of a comprehensive wine, beer and spirits program featuring a wide selection of signature cocktails, seasonal wine pairings and draft and bottled beers. Furnished with rich, dark woods, elaborate crown moldings and a zinc bar top, the 'bistro-esque' bar serves as a warm, friendly place to meet friends over a cocktail or to dine at the bar.

Mimi's six French-inspired dining areas transport guests to the nostalgic places that founder Arthur J. Simms visited with the love of his life, Mimi, while stationed in France as an American airman during World War II.

Each setting offers guests a unique ambiance and dining experience: The Garden, high wood-beam ceilings and lush plants evoke a bright, airy and fresh feel; The Cafe, an area to savor a gourmet coffee and pastry; The Bistro, warm lighting, dark wood finishes and curvy booths for a cozy, romantic feel; The Winery, brick walls and exposed wood beams for a comfortable, club-like atmosphere; The Bar, a charming 'bistro-esque' bar that serves as a friendly gathering place; and The Patio, reminiscent of a sidewalk cafe in Paris for dining al fresco.