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“Disappointing finish.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Palette Bistro

Palette Bistro
321 Bay St, Petoskey, MI 49770-2406
231-348-3321
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Ranked #4 of 82 Restaurants in Petoskey
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations, Late Night
Top Contributor
91 reviews 91 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Disappointing finish.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2013

Went to the Bistro to check it out for a special occasion. Had a few appetizers and cocktails, which were very good. Looked over the dinner menu and thought it would be perfect for our anniversary dinner. I approached the hostess and asked if there was a window table available at 8pm for a romantic,special dinner. She replied "yes. That will not be a problem." The Manager then approached and she told him about it. He invited me to take a look at all 3 dining areas available and pick where I wanted to be.
When we arrived for our special dinner, this same hostess didn't even seem to remember me. I reminded her of our earlier conversation, and she then said "oh, that's right." She handed 2 menus to another hostess who led us upstairs to our table. She placed us at a table just off the steps and not near the window. The room was extremely loud, and had all families with very young children in it. I told her we had requested and been promised a table on the main level against the window. Her reply was "well, we had a lot of people come in." This excuse was not acceptable. We were promised a romantic table, on the main level, against the window. This table was like being in the middle of a kids playground. She, nor the Manager, offered an apology. They obviously goofed, and when they looked in the book they saw the specific note in there for us. It would not have taken much for them to simply acknowledge their mistake, apologize and say "let us get you a drink, and we'll get something ready for you as soon as possible." Instead, we ended having to leave. We drove all over the place then looking to dine, but everything was booked. We ended having sub sandwiches taken back to our room.
Shame on the Bistro, the hostess and ESPECIALLY the Manager for messing this occasion up for us. And shame on them for not caring enough to handle it properly. We had a very clear reservation made, but they ignored it. I will make it a point to steer others in a different direction for dining.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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152 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    95
    36
    16
    3
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Charleston, South Carolina
Top Contributor
127 reviews 127 reviews
77 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
“Lovely Little Surprise”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

My husband is the best at "asking the locals" which restaurants they like when we visit a new town. Today for lunch a shopkeeper in Petoskey recommended Palette Bistro and we were so glad she did. It's a lovely restaurant with a terrific view of Lake Michigan. Our waitress was knowledgeable and sweet without being sugary, and didn't hesitate to recommend other restaurants for future meals. We both had the vegetable soup (1 of 3 fresh choices) that was delicious and loaded with fresh-from-the-garden veggies. I had a grilled chicken panini with spinach pesto, my husband had a spinach salad with smoked salmon. Both were wonderful. His salad dressing was lightly flavored with lemon curry - really wonderful. Highly recommend lunch or dinner here.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Blanc, Michigan
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Great food that full of tasty surprises”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

Recently, I had dinner at the Palette Bistro with my wife and mother. We enjoyed a table facing Little Traverse Bay with a view that was spectacular. I started with a small plate(appetizer) of smoked pulled braised beef served with grilled potato, beet, watercress-kale-red onion salad along with a truffle gorgonzola dressing. This was an excellent combination of flavors. Also, the Mediterranean BBQ pulled pork served over blue cheese polenta was delicious.
For my large plate(entrée) I had the pan-seared lake trout presented over a delicious vegetable hash that had fresh carrots, peas, lima beans, potatoes and celery. The fish was cooked in a wood burning oven so the skin was crispy but the fish was very moist. My wife had a Moroccan roasted pork loin served with mango chutney and coconut cous cous. Another flavorful dish.
For dessert we shared a piece of pecan-chocolate pie served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce. Our server,Melodie, was effervescent and very knowledgeable. Our service was excellent. All and all, a wonderful meal full of tasty surprises.

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  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Rochester Hills, MI
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Excellent Dining n Petoskey”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We enjoyed two excellent meals at the Palette. The menu is small but everything is delicious. The Caesar salad and the mixed greens with Calamari were both delicious. Pork tenderloin was outstanding. However, the most memorable (and indulgent) part of the meal were the desserts. The chocolate caramel pecan pie with ice cream was so delicious that my husband needed to return the next day for lunch to enjoy the pie a second time before we left the area. The blueberry/blackberry pie with lemon curd also was a winner. Overall, everything we have ordered here over the past year has been wonderful. The restaurant overlooks the bay and also offers outdoor seating. The staff is friendly and highly competent. This is one of our favorite places to dine in Petoskey.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Saginaw, MI
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Some good, some bad...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We had dined in this space in years past and were looking forward to a nice evening. There were some good things and some bad things about our experience that added up to just an average night.

We had an 8 pm reservation on a Saturday night and arrived about 5 minutes early. We were told that the party at our table was just finishing up their dessert, and we were sent to the bar area to wait. Took quite a while to be acknowledged and served in the bar, where we proceeded to wait for about 20 minutes. In the meantime it appeared that several tables opened up in the area we had requested. We were never out of the view of the hostess but she apparently completely forgot why we were sitting there. Finally we sought out a manager who apologized and seated us at a nice bay-view table.

Simple bread with olive oil and balsamic provided. Ceasar salads to start; they were fine. My husband chose the filet and I had the prawns and salmon dish. The filet was underdone and without seasoning. Our server did offer to have another steak sent out, but we declined. The seafood dish was nice, if a bit small: 2 well-cooked prawns and a tiny salmon filet served on a tasty pesto risotto with a tomato and onion relish.(I would have loved 2 more prawns!)

As an apololgy for the underdone steak we were offered a comp dessert, which was a nice touch. Selected the white chocolate brownie bites.This was sort of odd - warm but hard and crunchy brownies with a scoop of ice cream and cut fruit (melon, berries). Just OK - nothing special. I did enjoy the Coffee House Hummer - but it's hard not to enjoy booze and ice cream blended together, right?

All in all a pleasant meal at prices about what we expected; service was fine.The noise level in the dining room is very high and though the view is great, we did not find the evening to be a special experience overall. Nothing truly horrible, but nothing amazing either.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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