Born and raised in Perpignan, France, Chef Francois Mermilliod’s appreciation for good food was piqued at a young age. As a kid, he remembers watching his mother prepare family favourites like Pot au Feu in the kitchen. By age 12, he was dishing out simple fare for his parents’ dinner.
His parents, who were avid foodies, enjoyed dining at restaurants with the family on Sundays. It was during one of these memorable restaurant visits that he decided to become a Chef. He was 14. A year later he enrolled at L’Ecole Hôtelière du Moulin à Vent, a culinary school in his hometown, mastering cooking and Hotel Management. Next, Francois trained at Lenôtre Paris and the Valhrona School.
Francois was presented with an opportunity to work in Singapore at the famed Salut Restaurant in 1996. After 4 years, he left Singapore to run a seafood restaurant in Sydney before returning in 2002. Since then, his rise up the culinary rungs in Singapore has been swift, with successful head-chef stints at Au Petit Salut, Duo restaurant in Club street, Flutes at the Fort and Absinthe.
In August 2015, Francois opened Bar-A-Thym Restaurant, a convivial 40 seat restaurant specializing in seafood and meat dishes done a la Plancha, and features a unique French Omakase menu inspired by the regional specialities of Southern France and his experience throughout Asia.
Over the years, he has developed a reputation for simple, uncomplicated French Cuisine. His knack for incorporating both French and Asian cooking techniques are nuanced, with an emphasis on seasonal and local produce. Those skills combined with his affable personality have endeared Chef Francois to his patrons. Many of whom have dined with him for over 20 years.
"Bar-A-Thym", a play on words, was born out of a desire to express myself in a manner that is free and fun, yet recognizing the critical balance of our fragile ecosystem by adopting sustainable and ethical food procurement practices.
In French, Baratin means sweet talk/bullshit, a trait undeniably me and to all who know me!
In Singapore's fast-pacing dining scene, we spare no effort attending to the smallest of details; from artisan-quality baked goods, supplied by Heritage Bread, to sourcing for MSC and Friend of the Sea certified seafood. Together with my dedicated team and like-minded suppliers, we endeavour to deliver produce at their peak growing season straight from nature to your table.
Come and taste how much we care!