We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Provincial Provence”
Review of Bistro Provence

Bistro Provence
Ranked #26 of 373 Restaurants in Bethesda
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: New French restaurant run by chef Yannick Cam.
Reviewed November 1, 2013

Not situated in anywhere one really wants to be, Bistro Provence sets the scene for a provincial dinner near Washington. It must really only cater for a local trade as a twenty-five-minute taxi ride from central Washington hardly makes it a draw for visitors to America's capital. If getting there is bad enough, it is well-neigh impossible to find a taxi on the streets of Bethesda after 9 p.m. and that was what was recommended by the staff at Bistro Provence.

The atmosphere was fine - a long narrow room with an open - and noisy - kitchen at the end to one side, with a large garden beyond is suitably decorated for a provincial restaurant, dated and dull but clean and perfectly pleasant. The menu seemed well-balanced and thoroughly provincial, as expected, though both I and my guest had the recommended specials. Veal chops were well cooked, vast and slightly gauche - plain, simple fair.

Service was not as attentive as it could be nor should have been considering the restaurant was only half full, but we were in no hurry for anything, though the check came with remarkable speed when asked for, always a sure sign that they can do it when they want to and that the manager is not on his toes. There is some minor 'celebrity' chef associated with this place I understand, but there was no evidence of him or her in either the feel of the room or the food on the plates.

The wine list was stupid beyond belief and a disgrace. I have no problem whatsoever with a restaurant making the majority of their profit from beverages, but the mark-up here was eye-watering. And it was not even as if the list was particularly good, interesting, innovative or challenging.....it was thoroughly provincial, which probably explains the massive prices charges, seeing as how it must be so difficult to get good wine in this lonely, distant corner of Maryland.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Mike H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (165)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

105 - 109 of 165 reviews

Reviewed October 17, 2013

Enjoyed a very nice business dinner here with a group of 5. Nice range of selections but not overwhelming. Service was nicely paced - not too slow, not too fast. I enjoyed a nice arugula, anchovies and Parmesan salad and a very good Provence flavored bouillabaisse. I would definitely enjoy a chance to visit again.

1  Thank MJN63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2013

Without a doubt this is the best place for French food in Bethesda. Their patio was a pleasant surprise - it has a lovely array of plants and is reasonably quiet. The service was relaxed, which I think helps keep this place free from a stuffy feeling, however it could have been more attentive.

1  Thank Barry E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 27, 2013

Had a reservation for 4 people at 8 pm and sat outside on the patio. Slow service but the food was certainly very good, tasty and imaginatively served. How sad then that by 9.15 the staff were noisily clearing tables all around us and then swiftly removed our plates in turn as soon as each of us finished! It was obvious that the staff wanted to close up and go home on what was I suppose a slow night and as a consequence the atmosphere on what should have been a celebratory evening was pretty dire. When we left - feeling very badly treated by what is fundamentally a quality restaurant - it was still only 9.45! There is no excuse for that sort of treatment of paying customers.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank govsmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 23, 2013

We were a table of 8, gathered on a warm evening and ready to enjoy a fine dining experience. It's a good thing we had lots to talk about, because while the food was excellent, it took an unbelievably long time to get to the table. The waiter apologized and said they were short-handed in the kitchen, but this really tested the limits of our patience. We waited nearly an hour to get our appetizers, and then another hour to get our entrees. By the time we were done, we were too tired for dessert! I'd be willing to give Bistro Provence another try, based on the quality of the food, but unless the staff can up the tempo, we won't make this a regular stop when we're in the DC area.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Kamala4812
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Bistro Provence also viewed

Bethesda, Montgomery County
Bethesda, Montgomery County
 
Chevy Chase, Montgomery County
Bethesda, Montgomery County
 

Been to Bistro Provence? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing