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May 8, 2007 10:27 AM

New "foodie" restuarant on Providence's West Side

I heard through the grapevine that there is a new restaurant going to Providence's West Side called Loui Fuller's at 1455 Westminster Street. The owner also has Lily Marlene's bar on Federal Hill. I hear the restaurant is going to be French inspired with some good specialty beers on tap. It should be open soon. Has anyone driven by there recently???

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  1. I walk by it all the time, they've been working on the place for months. The exterior has some very elaborate art noveau-style woodwork around the windows now, and it looks like the interior is getting frenchy wall paintings--are the called frescos if they aren't ancient? I'm an eater, not an art historian. At any rate, if their food is prepared with 1/2 the care that the building seems to be, it'll be a good spot. On the other hand, it's looking like it might be a little overwrought. Hard to tell until the who thing comes together, of course, and it probably bodes better to be overambitious than under.

    On the flipside, I heard that Local 121 had a soft opening last week and it's got me wondering.. but's that's for another thread...

    5 Replies
    1. re: celeriac

      I talked to someone after posting the thread that Loui Fuller opened last Friday. Who knew???

      1. re: sarahbeth

        Is Loui Fuller going to follow in the fine Providence tradition of being nearly invisible and without any signage to speak of?

        - Garris

        PS: I was just at Local 121 this evening and it was wonderful, both in interior design and food. It has "instant institution" written all over it...

        1. re: Garris

          I imagine it will since Lilli marlene's also has no signage to speak of. I have walked by there the past few nights when it is open and it is so damn dark in there!.... annoying as there is not street prescence.

          Lack of signage is true of a lot of west side spots. Nick's, Julian's, now Fuller....

          1. re: basachs

            Not only lack of signage, but the lack of websites for local restaurants just kills me. I did a quick Google search, to no avail. Anyone know if Loui Fuller has a URL?

      2. re: celeriac

        Yes, it turns out it is, in fact, open. I went by to have a look last night but, in fine providence form, they're closed Tuesdays. They do have signage, although it's just a very discreet LF on the door. The place looks quite opulent, with a really strong Parisian Art Noveau vibe, as mentioned above, but it also looks very fancy for a neghborhood spot--makes me wonder if their ambitions may be much higher than that. I guess we'll see when we see a menu.

      3. Hmm...I wonder if there is any connection between this and "Loie" in Philly, after Loie Fuller, which was around the corner from me

        1. It's open!
          Haven't been yet but friends have and have loved it.

          Also-Local 121 at 121 Washington St. is having a soft opneing now. It's regional cuisine with local ingredients. REALLY good. Chef from La Laterie is running the kitchen. Grand opening is soon, I think. It's on the first floor of the old Dreyfus Hotel that AS220 bought and turned into artist space.

          1. loie fuller's is fantastic. just awesome. i went there this weekend and posted a lengthy review on my blog. i am very pleased with this addition to the providence dining scene!!!

            1 Reply
            1. re: tomatosoup

              I also went this past weekend. I agree with many others that the decor and the food were both great. Unfortunately, they are still working out some kinks (my wife and I waited over an hour for our entrees and our dessert was burned). On the flip side, the staff did their best to make the most of things.
              We will definitely be back, albeit maybe in a couple of weeks.

            2. Sigh. Went to louie fuller's last night. mmmmmmmm. I am still so happy about it.
              You know how there's been the whole "bistro" craze for the last couple years? And you know how the "bistros," for the most part, end up being places where you buy lots of overpriced steak frites and they serve chocolate martinis or whatever to skinny women in Gucci shoes who couldn't care less about what they were eating, even though bistros are supposed to be neighborhood hangout places where you get wonderful, inexpensive yumminess with great wine and beer?
              Well this place has the spirit of an actual bistro. It's awesome. I haven't felt this euphoric about a restaurant in a long time. I want to eat there, like, once a week, or something.
              How to start: we were greeted by the Lili Marlene's guy at the door (I guess he's the owner?), who seated us by a nice table at the window, looking down tree-lined parade street. We both had (two of) the la chouffe ale, which was pretty damn dreamy--hoppy and floral with not-overpowering belgian ale undertones.
              For appetizer: "The carpetbagger," a wonderful, juicy, flavorful steak folded over raw oysters. Whew! This thing was phenomenal! The contrast of the chewy, savory steak with the fresh, briny, soft oysters was divine. It made me think that perhaps the people who thought of "surf & turf" were onto something.... please, please order this. It was soooo good. Everything else on the appetizer list looked great, too, though.
              Then the bf had perfectly, perfectly cooked cod en papillote, with tarragon potatoes and littlenecks...beautifully presented, incredibly tasty, and again, perfectly cooked. I had green onion and pistachio ravioli with balsamic brown butter, which was delicious, if a little bitter--with a glass of Cotes du Rhone, though, it was perfect. Already way overbudget, we finished with a pear tart with ginger ice cream (I should note that we were overbudget entirely through our own fault because of our prodigious alcohol consumption, not the food--the food is extraordinarily well-priced---first courses are in the $4-8 sort of range, more for fancier items; entrees went from $8-16, I think. The alcohol is pretty well-priced too, though, for the quality that you're getting).
              As for the atmosphere, it was like Lili Marlene's, but better lit, less hipster-ish, and more dressed-up. But it was like Lili Marlene's in the sense that it was inclusive and relaxed--people of all stripes were there to enjoy themselves, not to pretend that they were part of some exclusive restaurant scene. The service was pretty slow, but the bf and I got the sense that maybe this was intentional, so that people enjoy a sort of long, drawn-out, warmly tipsy meal---we were pretty happy just rolling along, chatting, enjoying the evening, and sipping our lovely beer. Our server was lovely and gracious and it just seemed like she was letting us go at a slow, happy pace.
              Listen, if you like really good food, really good booze, and an extremely chill but lovely atmosphere, you've got to go to this place. It looks from other reviews like they are working out a few kinks, but our experience was really, really great and I imagine once they get going it will only get better.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ginqueen

                My Partner and I went Saturday evening. UNBELIEVABLE d├ęcor. I live across from it and have been waiting to eat there for quite a while during the renovations to see if the neiborhood was finally getting a restaurant that reflects those of us who have moved here over the past few years. I was mostly satisfied with the quality of the food, however my Pear Tart was burned around the edges. I would like to see a slightly larger menu. The prices are about 2/3rds the price of most Atwell Ave. spots and without the Boston attitude I have begun to see in the area. The diners seemed to be in a very comfortable and friendly mood. Must have been the fabulous Art Nuevo atmosphere and the beautiful music. The staff was very friendly. I plan on making it a regular spot.