Thierry Burkle’s L’Etoile is a guiding light in French country cooking. The smart neighborhood brasserie succeeds because of a constellation of moderately priced, well-thought-out offerings, including this lemon sole.

The mild fish is perfectly suited to a special-occasion dressing up. With a bread-crumb crust as a toasty counterpoint, the moist and flaky filets are transformed into a positively dashing alter ego. The dreamy champagne-and-cream sauce gets an acidic tweak from perky pearl-size champagne grapes. For a small dinner party, you will thank your lucky stars for this no-nonsense entrèe.

Thierry Burkle’s recipe for Lemon Sole with Champagne Sauce.