I have noticed that no one has reviewed ODB's new French Bistro concept for dinner. My sister and I have gone there twice, and have both had mixed feelings about the overall execution. The menu is varied, and has been different each time we have eaten there. The food has been mostly well cooked and well presented. The service is attentive. The price is reasonable for an upscale restaurant. The first time we ate there, I had a piece of fish that tasted amazingly fresh and cooked to perfection. The Provençal tomato as a side was delicious. My sister had a steak that was also cooked just right and obviously high quality. We ordered charcuterie for our starter, and it was not good at all. Even the mustard served on the side was not authentic.
The new decor is pleasing with plenty of seating. The overall feeling was definitely French.
Our main complaint on our first visit, was the lack of knowledge of the staff. Our server had to go ask someone even the simplest question about the menu. She also hurried our order of our entrees with the promise that she would give us plenty of time for our first course. As you might guess, she brought our entrees before we were half way through the charcuterie plate. To me, that is a fatal mistake in a restaurant in that price range.
On our second visit, we found the menu changed, which I love. I love the way the restaurants in France change their menu at the chefs whim and the seasons. This time we both ordered steak. I ordered a sirloin that was around $15. My sister ordered a filet that was $19. Again the steaks were perfect. Mine was steak frites, and the fries were delicious. We ordered salads instead of a starter, and they were very ordinary. I would have expected something a little more inspired than lettuce, tomato, and cucumber in a bowl. Our desert was served still packaged as if it were a carry out item. The wine list is adequate but priced somewhat high, certainly not a good value.
In conclusion, ODB is doing a lot right. And we all know that Blacksburg desperately needs a good restaurant that appeals to grownups. I am hoping that they will get their act together and be a place where one can always get a high quality meal, and enjoy a leisurely evening with friends. I would go often.
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