825 Montauk Highway, Bayport, NY, USA
Le Soir Bayport Reviews
Le Soir Oct 14, 2013
Saw this place while driving along Montauk Highway ages ago and always wanted to try it, but was gunshy about the price, since this place seemed like the kind of fancy-pants, pricey kind of place which warrants a once-every-two-years, eat-cereal-everyday-for-the-next-month kind of dinner.
Fast forward to my first wedding anniversary; my husband, aware of my penchant for sophisticated and unnecessarily labor-intensive cuisine francaise, reserved a table for two on a Saturday night.
It's an elegant place with glass, french-door style glass walls surrounding the small, intimate dining room. Real roses garnish all twenty or so tables and the restroom (impeccably clean with a nice added touch of french hand soap).
Unfortunately, the "intimate" (read: small) nature of the dining room means that if every table is talking at a reasonable volume, it is near impossible to hear the person sitting across from you. My husband is obnoxiously loud. If it's difficult to hear him, the environment must be QUITE loud. One serious recommendation I would give to Le Soir's management is the adding of noise-cancelling paneling on the walls. It was absolutely deafening in there.
Now... on to the important part of this review: the food!
Like any nice place, they bring you ice water and bread, which they kept refilling. The bottomless bread (which was excellent, by the way) would've been great, except the wait for our food was sooooo long that we wound up eating close to three loaves!
We ordered a 2010 French Burgundy Gran Cru at $52, which was acidic and mediocre. For appetizers, we got escargot (which I love and always order when it's available) and frog legs, which my husband has never had. They were both slathered in garlic-parsley pesto, which was a shame because it made them seem like the exact same dish. Not only was the taste of frog/snail completely overpowered by garlic, it represented lack of creativity on Le Soir's part.
That brings me to the service... so slow it was non-existant. When she WAS there, she seemed nice, but almost condescending. Apparently they're so authentic at Le Soir, their servers channel the rudeness of actual French waitstaff! In spite of the fact that she was vastly superior to us, she managed to bring the wrong appetizers (how?), then imply that it was somehow our fault that she had brought out the wrong order. Ummm... yeah... great service, Le Soir.
We were there on a night that offered the "special", which includes house-choice soup and salad, oddly served AFTER the appetizer. The soup was a velvety potato leek that was quite welcome after the disapointing first courses. The salad was also nothing "special"; coarsely chopped romaine lettuce with a simple Caesar dressing and nothing else. Would've been a fine palate cleanser except, AGAIN, there was such heavy-handed use of garlic in the dressing that it was actually spicy. I love garlic...but seriously guys, enough already, other flavors do exist in this world.
As for the entrees: My husband had the beef (boeuf?) Bourgignon, cooked with bacon and served over linguini. While this was unspeakably rich, it was easily the best dish of the night. There were several sizable chunks of tender beef with a deep, rich flavor and a sauce nicely sopped up with a couple pieces of our third loaf of bread. My soft-shell crabs, one of the specials that night, weren't so great. My roasted potatoes were dry and withered, and my poor crabs were either left to fry too long, or the fryer oil needed to be changed. Either way, they were way too crispy and the breading was fried so dark it was almost black. I sent it back, apologizing (why?) and explaining that I never send anything back. Our aforementioned waitress came back after speaking to the chef, who claimed that it was "the freshness of the crabs" which caused their shells to be hard. Excuse me, I had no problem with the hardness of the shell, it was the fact that they were CLEARLY overcooked!
Sigh... but I digress. This is where Le Soir actually accepted that they had an unhappy customer and tried to make nice. I was offered another entree instead of the crabs, so I chose the pan-seared sea scallops. Again with the dried-out roasted potatoes. The scallops themselves were sizable and tender, but too salty. The julienned steamed veggies that accompanied them were nice. Not super, just average. I did prefer that dish to the crabs, but not by much. It was like self-aware wedding food and equally underwhelming.
We were also offered two complimentary desserts, which was very nice of them, but wasn't going to bring me back again OR increase that server's tip. While the blueberry tart was terrible (not even tasty, it was heavy and bland, I only ate the whipped cream on top), the Ile Flotant (or floating island) was an interesting treat that was a first for both of us. A block of airy meringue with praline crumbled on top, floating in a saucer of creme anglaise. The creamy yumminess of the floating island actually left us with a good taste in our mouths, as opposed to the figurative bad taste we departed with. After all was said and done, we had laid out $165 plus tip for a less-than-stellar experience.
Bottom line, Le Soir was a disappointment. The exorbitant prices are this place's real downfall. I shouldn't say it was a total loss, as they did try to recover their losses at the end, but all in all you can have great food for less (and not get laryngitis by trying to converse with the person next to you)in the process. Skip this one.
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!