Bistro 7 Review
We had dinner last night at Bistro 7, I wanted to give a quick review because I like to to give reviews and there aren't too many mentions of this place on Chowhound. Bistro 7 goes with the local and fresh perspective changing thir menu frequently according to the server. For starters they dish out the bread one measly slice at a time which I am not a big fan of because by the time 8pm rolls around I am usually starving, it came with oil and chopped up basil. We started off with the gnocchi appetizer for $10 which was tossed with cider roasted butternut squash, toasted walnuts and romano cheese all in a sage butter sauce. The gnocchi melted in your mouth and this was the best dish of the night in both mine and my girlfriends' eyes. She regrets she didn't order it as an entree for $20. I was dissapointed not to see any beef on the menu. I usually go with it, and never with chicken unless it sounds great which this dish did. This was a free range chicken breast in a cider-thyme reduction with roasted fingerling potatoes, roasted brussel sprouts and a home made chicken apple sausage(it sounded too seasonal to pass up). The sausage was very good and the rest simply average at best. The cider-thyme reduction had a great flavor, but unfortunately the chicken, potatoes, and brussel sprouts didn't follow suit. GF got the pork wrapped in bacon which came with a sweet potato tart topped with carmelized onions and a side of greens. The greens were quite bland the pork was good, it had a smoked flavor to it and the sweet potato tart was the highlight of her dish. It also came with a piece of maple cured pork belly. Are you supposed to eat that stuff? It was one huge piece of fat. Must be there for presentation...Anyway, all in all the place was fine, but after coming off of a Matyson and Caffe Casta Diva trip, it definitely didn't stack up. I would say it was an average restaurant. The service was good, the noise level was fine, and the prices were reasonable too with the chicken coming in at $20 and the pork $25. The dessert selection was small and nothing tempted us after the meal so we skipped it. It wasn't a horrible dining experience by any means, simply mediocre. I will tell you this though, those gnocchi are amazing and I will be thinking about those for some time to come.
I concur on the gnocchi--it is very light and delicate. I love it with the butternut squash, and it's sublime when morel mushroom time comes around.
But I completely disagree about the chicken. It's my usual order, because they do it so well. I did notice the dish was prepared differently on Friday night--only the breast and wing, with some char-grilling. It was a more "naked" preparation--not as much basting or butter, yet still very tender and flavorful.
Thanks for the interesting review.
A note about ordering chicken breasts - my husband, the terrific cook, rarely orders them out because it is very difficult not to get the too dry. They need just the right amount of cooking, and a little bit either way ruins them.
One place that does an excellent version is Moonstruck, in northeast Philly. By the way, that's a really good place - everything we've had there has been delicious, and they have a parking lot. Attractive place, always busy but a noise level that lets you talk. Not BYOB.