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“Going down hill fast”
Review of Black Hawk Bistro - CLOSED

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Black Hawk Bistro
Cuisines: American
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Michigan
Level 6 Contributor
97 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Going down hill fast”
Reviewed September 4, 2012

This was my second visit since the Brown Trout has been under new ownership. The menu is typical, but the food quality is just not up to par. I tried the seafood chowder, since the new owners inexplicably don't serve the smoked trout chowder the restaurant was known for, and it lacked any flavor and the seafood was scarce. I then ordered the perch. It was covered with capers. Now, I like capers, but they so saturated the perch, it was almost inedible. Didn't bother with dessert. The prices were higher and the food was poor. Not a good combination.

It's a shame to have one less choice in the area, but I won't return.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank janfrommichigan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

32 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    14
    5
    3
    5
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Charlevoix, Michigan
Level 6 Contributor
100 reviews
71 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
“Don't waste your time.”
Reviewed August 10, 2012

I used to eat at The Brown Trout semi-regularly. Haven't been there in at least 6 months. Service has always been dicey. Food average. Location is what they have going on. There aren't many choices in the area. My most recent visit was the most frustrating and will guarantee I will never return.

I have had this exact scenario happen several times in my life. It's beyond frustrating. I walked in, sat down and was planning on a beer or two with my lunch. The bartender walked up after a few minutes and said... "We changed ownership recently and we don't have our liquor license yet..." No beer at a bar. What is the point? I was frustrated and asked her how many people walk out after hearing the news that a BAR does not have ALCOHOL. She indicated that nearly every one that walks in the door walks out when they learn that the "no booze available" news, since after all, that's WHY we visit BARS. She also said that it was very uncomfortable for her and the others servers and the people are understandably frustrated. I counted 5 groups of people that left and 1 that stayed in the 30 minutes I was there.

What I do not understand is why management wouldn't put a sign on the door. "Open for lunch. No alcohol available at this time" or something to that effect. That would save EVERYONE some grief. The customers AND wait staff. Management is obviously hoping that once people are in the building that they will stay and eat anyway. That was clearly not the case today.

In any event, The Brown Trout was already on my “only one more chance” list and after today's experience I won't return. If management is not concerned enough to place a sign on the door to communicate the current alcohol situation to customers BEFORE they enter, the why should I believe that the food quality and service will be any better in the future?

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Rebel-Miles-Photo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rockford, Michigan
Level 5 Contributor
89 reviews
74 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Good potential, not quite together yet”
Reviewed August 6, 2012

I lunched at the Brown Trout Inn while on the 5th day of a 6 day Michigander bike tour. The restraunt itself (physical space) is good, clearly a different place in a former life. As others have said, no alcohol when I was there. I had seafood chowder, onion rings and a greek salad. The soup was not quite lukewarm when it was delivered. It was just slightly less so when it came back the second time. Had it been at a reasonable serving temprature it would have been very good. Unlike the soup the onion rings were very good - hot, well made and tasty, as was the salad.

With more attention to details this can be a good place. The server tried, unlike the experience of others reviewing the Inn, to do the right things. She could, sadly, only do so much.

  • Visited July 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank dwynep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harbor Springs, Michigan
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“New Management...”
Reviewed July 30, 2012

They were still waiting for their Liquor License when we were there. We had their French Onion Soup, it was like Day Old Dishwater! Not cooked long enough, Thin and Tasteless. Some of the Onions were still half Raw!

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Sandy4343
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waterford, Michigan
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Good food, no wine or liquor”
Reviewed July 18, 2012

My father used to eat here many years ago. He loved it so we thought we'd give it a try. As we drove into town, we say that Vivio's restaurant was packed. We thought we'd find the same at the Brown Trout. The lot was almost empty with only a couple of cars in the lot. We wondered why they weren't busy. As you walk in, there is a large bar but they don't have a license to serve alcohol yet. Our waiter was very prompt and brought us a basket of pretzel rolls. They were delicious. A few minutes after taking our order, we were informed that their soup of the day, Tomato Basil, was gone. We looked around at the empty restaurant and wondered why they were out?? The steak was good but one had to be returned for additional cooking. It was a nice restaurant but not a good value for the money.

  • Visited July 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank siestaacres
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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