Saturday, June 09, 2007

Restaurant review - Bistrot Bistro

Located near 4th Avenue and Arbutus, Bistrot Bistro is a French food place in the heart of Kitsilano. Now, for those of you who think I have betrayed my East Vancouver roots, well... I hadn't been to a place in Kitsilano in a while and I thought it was worth it. Besides, it was the very intimate celebration of one of my very best friends so I simply couldn't refuse to go down to Kits (plus I don't get any say in the decision!). Nevertheless, her choice was excellent. Besides, we DID indeed want to try a new restaurant.

While we were cautiously optimistic (the restaurant website is rather pretty and sophisticated but needs some work I think), once we got there we were treated to a phenomenal dinner. For le premiere assiette we ordered several appetizers (including salmon mousse and a charcuterie platter). We then followed with a few French classics: boeuf bourguignon, rabbit in tomato black olive sauce and a fisherman's stew pot.

If only we knew beforehand that the portions were humongous, we probably would have starved to death for four days before heading to Bistrot Bistro. At the end we ended up taking home a large portion of our dinners. But the dessert... OMG the dessert! Their desserts are also served in huge portions. Their chocolate mousse is to-die-for, their crepes are amazing, and of course the profiteroles. It almost reminded me of the last time I was in Paris.

The full staff (and I believe the owner) are French speakers (and if I am not mistaken, pretty much from France as well). So I got to practise my French with them. It also helped having a native French speaker with us for dinner.

All in all, it was an out-of-the-world experience. We would definitely return for dinner and/or just dessert. Actually, I'd be happy to just come for dessert. It is SO worth it. But I think that the experience was also heightened because we were celebrating a dear friend's birthday. It does really have something to do with it.

So, in a nutshell - would I recommend Bistrot Bistro for dinner? Absolutely. Their menu is amazing. Just one word of warning: the place is small and crammed. The space is so tight that you will literally have conversations with your neighbours over their food (... ooops). Strategic recommendations on how to enjoy this place the best? Probably come late because if you show up at 7.30pm you're going to find the place completely packed. That's why I said that perhaps next time we'll end up just doing dessert. Totally worth it.

PS - While surfing the website, I noticed that the owners posted ALL the review (good AND bad) of Bistrot Bistro, as a reminder (more or less in their own words) of the fact that "each night is a new show". They certainly pulled it off with us, as we tend to be picky diners. I should commend Bistrot Bistro's management team for doing that. I hope their level of service stays the same. Our waiter was really good and attentive.

Bistrot Bistro in Vancouver

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