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“big disappointment”
Review of Il Etait Une Fois - CLOSED

Il Etait Une Fois
Cuisines: French
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Reviewed November 23, 2011

Well, it probably didnt help that we had been to Le Bistro du Rhone the previous night where the food and service was wonderful. Also, the reviews were really hit and miss on this one but more were in favor so I decided to book for my group. I should add we are all "foodies" from Sweden, USA, Peru and South Africa. I live in France now and I made the bookings. We were first turned off by the outside seating (I had requested inside so I am not sure how we ended up outside... I did add one more to our party a few days before so maybe that was the reason). Outside seating is not so nice as the lighting is BRIGHT and horrendous. The service was not good at all. Let's just say the starter arrived BEFORE we had ordered wine or even had water. Really? That said, everyone was very pleased with their starters. I had the pumpkin soup with shrimp and honestly I wish I had just had a great big bowl of that for my main as well... it was so yummy. Unfortunately the main courses were a big disappointment for all. I had ordered a mixture of meats (maybe 2 different roasted red meats?) and it was over cooked and dry, dry, dry. Honestly, the impression that we got was that the food must be preplated for quite some time and then sat under a heat lamp to keep warm. We didnt even finish our main course. The night before we were licking our plates at Le Bistro du Rhone. Desserts were good but at this point in the evening it was too late for Il Etait Une Fois to redeem itself. Big disappointment. Will not recommend, will not return. I give average rating (and not lower) because I do honestly believe there is talent in the kitchen (as starters and desserts were good) BUT the service and mains not up to par... I dont believe this is an "off night" as this is something other reviewers seemed to talk about. as well. They need to raise their standards a bit higher otherwise they will just become a tourist trap type restaurant with substandard food at the end of the day.

Thank lahlily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (69)
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7 - 11 of 69 reviews

Reviewed October 10, 2011

Encouraged by some previous reviews we were a bit apprehensive when on a mid week rainy night we found there was only one other lone diner. However the friendly welcome by a beautiful hostess made us feel easier. She was anxious to test her English after my attempt at French! The upstairs dining room was small - about 20 covers - but more tables available downstairs and outside on better days.
The menu was limited and one starter not available but another extra offered. Thankfully no "regional specialities" but a fine mix of meat and fish dishes that didn't disappoint. Presentation was wonderful. I suspect a greater number of diners might have stretched the only one chef and one waitress but maybe they adjust for busier evenings.
Not the cheapest meal but nevertheless we considered it value for a lovely experience.

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Thank Silversurfer020
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2011

Seriously?  Had dinner here in Sept 2011.   Service was below the norm in France... just imagine that. It took forever for the only waitress to take our order and than bring out food.  Foie gras was terrible.  Lamb shack was hard.  Chocolate tart mediocre. Do they drop the standard out-of-season? Even the French guest were commenting on the service and food. This, plus a location just in front of a VERY noisy techno club made for a disastrous experience.

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Thank basiaczek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2011

Against advice we showed up without booking and got an outside table on a lovely warm evening without any difficulty even though they were busy. The food was excellent and very good value, less than 70 euros including a large carafe of wine.
A local dish seems to be tartiflette and having experienced this on occasions elsewhere in France I warned my wife not to choose theirs. I was amazed with what arrived. A glass full of a warm well seasoned lettuce in creamed potato with a rolled warm salad wrapped in parma ham. Brilliant.This was followed by a spectacular baked fish dish similar to cod with a light sauce. I had the veal and beef cold plate and was astonished by the quantity and quality. A caramelised peach in a sauce that was delicious ended my meal. This is a 'have to go there' restaurant before they get swamped . I would not be surprised to see a star or two on the horizon . We didn't have the time to return and go through the menu but next time in Annecy we'll try.

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Thank LJMLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2011

Six of us had dinner here and all agreed it was a very special meal. 22 euros for entree/main or main/dessert or 30 euros for 3 a la carte courses. Service excellent and advice on wine much appreciated. The sparkling pink Cerdon at 29 euros a bottle made a fine celebratory start to our meal.

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Thank rosamundj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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