Tag Archives: French Cuisine

{ Slate Bleu } ***

Escargot en Croute
100 South Main Street
Doylestown Pa 18901


My friend Liz and I constantly find ourselves asking the question, “where should we go for dinner tonight?” We live in a small town with fairly limited dining options, which leads us to frequent the same four places over and over again each week: Domani Star, Ooka, M.O.M.s, and Quinoa. But tonight we were longing to break out of our little routine so we ventured to try the French restaurant Slate Bleu.

It is by no means new to the neighborhood—if fact, it has established a sort of cult following—but it always falls of my radar because its location is slightly hidden. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess.

Tonight we arrived without a reservation and found ourselves seated without a problem in the elegant downstairs dining area (I prefer this downstairs bar area to the upper tier dining room, which is a bit more removed from the pulse of the restaurant). The décor is very chic and modern, and lends itself well to an impressive first-date kind of place.

After looking over the cocktail list, I decided to try the Bourbon St. Ginger on the rocks, made with Elderflower liquor, bourbon, and a splash of ginger ale ($9). The slight fizz was refreshing, but the drink was definitely potent. I also recommend the Frozen Grapefruit Martini made with absolut vodka, dry vermouth, sorbet, and grapefruit segments ($13). It is certainly pricey, but so unique and delectable that it can commend the price point.

To start we ordered the Salade Ardoise with mixed greens, figs, French bleu cheese, Prosciutto, pecans, and balsamic vinaigrette ($12.50). We had the intentions of sharing the salad, but ordered a second to each have our own after the first bite! The bleu cheese was excellent and the figs were so good with the salty ham and vinegar.


The Escargot en Croute, a classic French appetizer of snails with garlic and herb butter baked in pastry ($12.50), was also very tasty. It was my first experience with escargot and I expected to be leery about the texture, but the flakey and buttery croute provided enough contrast for me to enjoy them. Caution: there is a TON of garlic used in the making of this dish!

Escargot en Croute 2

For dinner I ordered the Thai Steamed Mussels with coconut, ginger, and lemongrass with a side order of fries ($15.50). I found the broth bland because they used coconut water instead of coconut milk. I thought it was a bit too light without the creamy component, but the mussels themselves were nice and plump. The fries were also excellent!



Liz had an order of the Chicken Paillarde with artichokes, nicoise olives, and saffron risotto ($14.50). She is a risotto kind of girl due to her gluten free diet, and she claims that this is the best risotto that she has ever had. As for the rest of the dish, chicken is chicken….


Since my initial visit, I have gone back and tried the Bar Steak Au Poivre, which is a pepper encrusted petit NY steak served with fries ($20.50). I was terribly disappointed by the steak, which I requested at medium rare temp and was served more than well done. The piece of meat shrank down to nothing, but I was so hungry that I continued to eat after bringing it to my server’s attention. Unfortunately, they did nothing to rectify the situation, which I found to be a bit of a turn off and I certainly won’t suggest that anyone order a steak there. The French are infamous for under cooking their beef, so to be served so well done is a bit odd.

Steak Au Poivre

Overall, I like the idea of going back for a nice meal at the bar with a friend or on a date. Get a cocktail and either a cheese platter or one of the lighter menu items to share. I would try the mussels in traditional white wine garlic sauce next time, and steer clear of steak.

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Filed under Baking, Brunch, Buck's County, Cafe / Bistro, Cocktails, Dessert, French Restaurants, Gluten Free, Lunch Spots, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Restaurants, Take-Out

Le Bilboquet *****

25 East 63rd Street, New York 10021
(Between Madison and Park Ave)


[food coma (n): the feeling of listlessness, bordering on sleep, that one feels after eating a large meal, often caused by a rush of blood to the stomach and intestines during food digestion.]

Ohh Le Bilboquet…There is just so much to say about this tiny French Bistro, which is packed with a big French attitude.  We all know that a certain level of animosity exists between the French and, as they would say, “Filthy Americans,” but Le Bilboquet proves that you don’t have to be in France to experience it!  The wait staff (all French…of course) are a group of beautiful (and arrogant) young men, who seem inconvenienced that they even have to take your order.  Essentially, you have to call them over for everything and this past time my boyfriend even caught himself saying, “Excuse me sir, can we place our order?”  That’s right, the customer asking the waiter if they can be served!!! A little backwards, no? Of course the supermodel looking man then put down his Sunday paper and came out from behind the bar to take our order, but it just feels weird.  Ohh and if you have questions about the menu, which of course is all in French, don’t expect much help from the wait staff…I asked if they had tuna tartar and he was like “of course, don’t you see it right here on the menu?!” (pointing to something in French, while making me feel uncultured at the same time).

At this point, you’re probably thinking that I messed up my star rating because all that I have done is complain…but Le Bilboquet does in fact deserve five stars because the FOOD IS INCREDIBLE!  The reality is that this place would not be packed with American patrons if it did not serve delicious food.  I always order the Cajun Chicken, which is actually orgasmic.  It is served in a delicious peppery butter sauce and is sliced down into small pieces, making it easy to eat.  Ohh and there are no bones, which is a major plus in my opinion. It is served with a small mixed green salad dressed with balsamic vinaigrette and some of the most amazing french fries I have ever tasted.  The fries at the bottom of the pile soak up some of the buttery Cajun sauce and WOW, eating those is an experience!  I have also had the ceasar salad, which is very delicious.  However, the Cajun Chicken is a must have and even better, it is a huge portion!!

So, if you walk into this place and find yourself annoyed by the arrogant wait staff and the difficult to read menu, DON’T LEAVE!!  Just order the Poulet Cajun and I promise you won’t even be able to put down your fork to complain.  When the food comes at Le Bilboquet, the table (no matter what size) goes quiet until everyone has finished their plates.  Then to pull yourself out of the inevitable food coma, order a cappuccino or espresso (the cappuccino is amazing!!) and resume your table talk.

The prices are high (Cajun Chicken is $27), but the food quality can demand such a price in my opinion.

I have only ever been to Le Bilboquet for lunch, and the crowd ranges from youthful to elderly.  Lots of people getting dropped off in character town cars and as New York Magazine says, tons of “trust fund women with their little dogs.”  However, I have heard that the dinner scene is quite different and much more youthful because the restaurant plays loud “club music,” which makes conversations difficult. I’m young and that doesn’t appeal to me, so I will probably stick to lunches there!

Bon Appetitte!

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Filed under Cafe / Bistro, Cocktails, French Restaurants, New York Restaurants