214 South Robertson Boulevard, Beverly Hills, CA, USA
www.lecafeflore.com/default.… - (310) 659-6877
Cafe Flore Beverly Hills Reviews
Oct 06, 2007
Café Flore is a quaint bistro located at 214 South Robertson Blvd in Beverly Hills. Café Flore is small but it had a cozy and homey ambiance due to the framed pictures decorating the cream colored walls and the soft mood lighting. When we walked in, we were seated at a table that had a little “RESERVED” sign which made me feel even more special since it was my birthday.
Café Flore has no wine list but patrons are more than welcome to bring their own bottle. Plus there is no corkage fee! I decided to bring a bottle of wine which my best friend, Paula, gave to me oh about 10 years ago give or take a few years. It was a Harrods brand Claret made from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. My best friend was skeptical on how it would taste, telling me that it was probably a vinegar by now. But I was diligent through the years to store the bottle in a cool dry place, on its side, and turning the bottle periodically to keep the cork moist. Anyways, the maître d', whom I think was the owner of the restaurant, brought the bottle to the kitchen and served the wine in pilsner glasses, which I thought was odd. But since they don’t serve wine, why have wine glasses in stock. The Claret was smooth and fortunately tasted like wine and not vinegar!
Now onto the food!
For hors d’oeuvres we ordered the Champignons Farcis aux Escargots or mushrooms stuffed with escargots. The escargots were doused in butter, garlic, and herb sauce and were served on a cute, white ceramic palette. Again anything cooked with butter, garlic, and herbs has to taste good. This dish was very good especially for my first time eating escargots.
My cousin Donna ordered the Soupe du Jour which was a split pea soup. To her, the soup was a bit sweeter than split pea soups she had before but overall it was good. Paula ordered the Soupe a l’Oignon or French onion soup. French onion soup is usually served in a ramekin topped with bread and melted cheese. The French onion soup at Café Flore was served in a large soup bowl with toasted baguette slices covered with melted cheese on the side. The soup was just mediocre.
Everyone ordered their entrees from the Specialites de la Maison (House Specialties). I ordered the Café Flore Steak which was a 12 ounce NY steak with my choice of sauce and sides. For the sauces, you have a choice of L’Échalote (shallot, garlic, and red wine sauce), Sauce Champignons (mushroom, cream, and shallot sauce) or Poivre (peppercorn sauce). For the sides, you have a choice of garlic mashed potatoes, julienne vegetables, or fries. I chose the Sauce Champignons with fries. John ordered the Café Flore Steak with peppercorn sauce and fries, a dish he frequently orders at French restaurants as a benchmark to rank the restaurant’s quality. Patti ordered the Tagliatelle au Saumon which was Tagliatelle pasta and salmon served with a creamy dill sauce. Paula ordered the Confit de Canard, a duck dish with salad and fries. Donna craved the Cotelettes d’Agneau (lamb chops) but unfortunately Café Flore ran out. The maître d' suggested another lamb dish not on the menu, but since he did not know what cut of meat it was, my cousin opted for the Duck a l’Orange (also not listed on the menu).
We waited quite awhile for our entrees to be served. But it was OK because we were immersed in good conversation. When our food did come out we all dug in. My steak was cooked to perfection…just barely medium rare…yup I like my beef mooing! The steak was juicy and the sauce tasted yummy. The fries were golden brown and crispy…sturdy enough to dip in the sauce champignons. John enjoyed the steak au poivre. Patti commented that the salmon tagliatelle was “jammin’” which in her slang means really good. She also said that the serving size was just right…it must have been because she ate the whole bowl! Paula mentioned that her duck dish was a bit dry and needed some sort of sauce. She ended up using some of the orange sauce from Donna’s dish as well as my sauce champignons. Donna’s duck a l’orange was in her opinion also dry and she did not care for the orange sauce. She was a bit disappointed that she couldn’t have lamb chops, her favorite cut of meat.
For dessert, I bought my own birthday cake from my favorite bakery…Porto’s Bakery (see review by mellemel8). This time I got the Opera Cake which was “Three layers of espresso-soaked almond sponge cake, one layer of chocolate ganache, and one layer of mocha butter cream. Finished with bittersweet chocolate.” (http://www.portosbakery.com/cakes-readymade.htm). Everybody loved the cake! The maître d' then served a dessert called Plaisir on the house with five spoons so all of us could taste. Plaisir is sweet, creamy, foamy, delicate dessert flavored with either mango or caramel. It is almost like a mousse but with a fluffier and lighter texture. It was tasty.
My birthday dinner at Café Flore was a success from my point of view. Café Flore is affordable French food in Beverly Hills…who knew! All of Café Flore’s house specialties cost less than $19 including the Café Flore Steak. The hits of our meal were the escargots, steak, salmon, and Plaisir…the misses were the duck dishes. I would definitely go back to Café Flore!
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