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La Voile

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6 of us had dinner last night. It was crowded and things got off to a slow start. 8:30 res and we were still at the bar waiting at 9 ish. Truth is we were having so much fun that we didn't notice but the maitre'd did and came over to apologize. Without us saying a word, the round of drinks was comped and they brought a charcuterie plate over. Scheduling mistakes can happen (like our table having 6 people linger over their coffee), are hard to predict; but the restaurant went out of their way to make it up...and succeeded

We were shown to a very nice corner table. On to the food..

We sort of cobbled together a 4 course dinner

Round 1..appetizers..2 bone marrow plates(1 of my favorite items and better than the excellent version at KO Prime), a foie gras terrine, mussels. We also ended up with a steamed, whole foie gras in cabbage. Everything was delicious..also another small charcuterie plate.

Round 2..2 Dover Sole..perfectly done..filleted and plated at the table..firm, sweet fish, beautifully carved by our talented young waiter.

Round 3. I had the sweetbreads; which were fantastic..and sample the blanquett de veau and the bouillabaise (which will be lunch)..everything was great. Rest of the table had beef which I didn't taste but looked properly done to MR and got good reviews.

Round 4..Dessert..I was "done" at this point..and maybe someone else can fill in.

A good selection of wines suggested by our waiter..started with some white Burgundy, a light Loire red and a hearty Cotes du Rhone to finish. I wasn't taking notes and don't recall the names; but everything paired well with the food.

My overall take is this is a very good restaurant...great food, warm, friendly, professional service. Very good addition to the Boston restaurant scene. We all really enjoyed this meal.

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  1. Nice review. It's such a treat to have a good restaurant on Newbury St. at long last! I only hope it gets the business it deserves at the expense of mediocrities like Bouchee.

    1. Yes, this place definitely lives up to the hype! We had a wonderful time. La Voile was full and bustling on a chilly Saturday night. I started with an excellent Kir Royale as we waited at the bar. The bartender took great care of us, and the cozy bar area was a nice spot for the six of us to socialize as we waited for our table. As 9Lives mentioned, we had to wait a bit as the previous party at our table were lingerers, and we appreciated the thoughtful gesture of the manager, Philippe, comping our cocktails. They also brought over a plate of sliced saucisson as a snack. What a nice start to the night.

      They sat us at a great table - a large round table in a roomy corner slighty raised from the rest of the dining room. Onto the delicious food - no disappointments for me. Great bread and bone marrow; I'm glad we had two orders. There are two mussel dishes on the menu - a classic Moules Mariniere, and another, which we ordered - the Moules Poulette, plump mussels in a tasty cream broth, with frites. We had ordered the foie gras terrine, but Philippe later returned and told us that it wasn't up to their high standards, so he suggested an excellent alternative, which turned out to be one of my favorites of the night - "L'escalope De Foie Gras" steamed in cabbage leaves. Delicious. He also brought us out a wonderful chicken liver pate - I'm finally a chicken liver convert. I think I ate half of it myself. In addition to the appetizers, we enjoyed the plated amuse trio - a cheese and tapenade canape, saucisson, and a crispy herb fritter. The rest of the meal was just as good, including our next course of Dover sole. For my entree, I ordered a classic blanquette de veau, which was fantastic, and also got to try the delicious sweetbreads with morels. I can see why this dish is already a CH favorite! I also tried E's classic sliced filet mignon with bearnaise, which was tender and perfectly cooked. They did forget the side of frites E had ordered, which actually turned out to be a good thing as we had plenty with the mussels, and didn't need any more food. Well, maybe a dessert or two to share, along with a bottle of dessert wine - a chenin blanc (which may be the reason I'm completely blanking on what the desserts were!)

      I have to mention too that we had excellent service from our waiter Jean-Charles. In fact, everybody, from the hostess to the bartender, and everyone in between was friendly, efficient, and helpful. We were also introduced to the chef at the end of the night, so we made sure to let him know how much we enjoyed our meal. I'll definitely recommend this new restaurant to friends, and am looking forward to our next visit!

      6 Replies
      1. re: Rubee

        Link:

        -----
        La Voile
        261 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

        1. re: Rubee

          Our dining companions have done such a wonderful job of capturing the spirit and deliciousness of the night. Yes, a swell time was had by all, and I can only add that I loved some of the staff's black and white striped shirts, the French being spoken all around, and the overall excitement that is conveyed about this wonderful new endeavor. And my dessert was so pretty: a tiny, expertly crafted creme brulee, a miniature cup of chocolate mousse, a little lemon tart and a cookie that seemed to be dotted with citron. Just exquisite. We can't wait to go back.

          1. re: onefineleo

            After three visits since their opening, I can tell you that these raves are justified. I brought a Francophile ami last week, and she can wait to introduce her fellow Francophiles to La Voile.

            Did anyone have the molten chocolate cake? I don't normally order that when I'm dining out because it usually disappoints, but a neighbor told me it was perfection, and now it's my favorite La Voile dessert. It is served with a side dish of pistachio ice cream and a puddle of rich sauce. The cake itself is made of excellent quality chocolate and is not over-sweetened, over-cooked or over-heated as is often the case in less talented hands.

            Jean-Charles in a gem and fun too!

            I'm so glad that you all enjoyed my new neighborhood treasure!

            1. re: BostonZest

              I have two Francophile friends with small children, to whom I'd like to recommend La Voile. In addition to the numerous accolades mentioned in several threads, do the restaurant's charms extend to welcoming two well-behaved 4 year olds?

              1. re: Sugar04

                Not being a parent, I'm probably not the best person to answer this but my guess is that they'd be very welcome to 2 well behaved 4 year olds. There's really a warm, welcoming vibe from the whole staff.

          2. re: Rubee

            oh I can't wait to try this restaurant! Thank you for this wonderful review. I had planned a visit on Wednesday for a b-day celebration, but instead, the birthday boy wants me to cook. Definately will have to find another excuse.

          3. Hi

            My wife and I went last night for the first and certainly not the last time. We arrived at around 5:30 PM with no reservations but were able to be seated immediately. We were seated at nice table in the bar area and were taken care of by the bartender and the rest of the staff. My wife started with soup du jour which was a delicious cream of leek and potato. I opted for the endive, Roquefort, walnut and apple salad. This was beautifully presented and tasted wonderful. As mentioned by other they have avery simpl,e but nice bread basket that was served with our apps. My wife chose the thick cut of halibut and I chose the Dover Sole. Both were excellent. I love Dover Sole but it is hard to find in Boston area restaurants but at Le Voile it was cooked perfectly, boned at the table and served with a small cocotte of nicely cooked autumn vegetables. My wife enjoyed the Halibut which was served with a luscious cream sauce and the same mix of vegatables. For desert we split a chocolate mousse which was well made but not as good as I have at other places.

            One of the co-owners came over and chatted with us for quite awhile telling us how the restaurant evolved and what their plans are. They will be adding valet parking soon which will be a boon to those of us who don't live close by and in a few months they should be able to have a full bar. We would have liked to end a great meazl with a nice cognac but their current license only allows them to serve beer and wine. I am confident that Le Volie is going to become one of the hottest reservations in Boston very soon.

            2 Replies
            1. re: RoyRon

              Could you please give me an idea of the prices?

              1. re: Trixie Too

                See this thread.

                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/464389

            2. Nice review and nice restaurant - we're fans.

              1. Oh, how I wish they did lunch ......

                1 Reply
                1. re: C. Hamster

                  They are now open for lunch. We had the Provençal salad and a bottle of Rosé as we sat outside. There were a few tables that had childen, well behaved, seated and one in a carriage

                2. I usually lurk on these boards but I just have to weigh in on La Voile. We just had dinner there tonight and it definitely did not live up to the hype. As one of my dining companions and I agreed, the food just wasn't delicious.

                  I ordered the Mussels and fries. The fries were completely flaccid and barely warm. The Provencal sauce for the mussels was almost flavorless. Usually when I order a dish like this, I mop up every last bit of sauce with bread but this sauce wasn't inviting at all.

                  Two members of our party ordered the choucroute and agreed that while it was tasty, it didn't come close to the choucroute they have had at other places. None of the meats tasted smoked and the sauerkraut seemed like it came from a supermarket shelf rather then being made in house.

                  My appetizer was also on the bland side, a spring vegetable dish that needed more flavor. The only standout was the dessert, a pistachio, meringue and banana combination that sounds like it wouldn't work together but was delicious.

                  When the bill came, we all agreed, a hefty price for such a disappointing meal.

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: SJason

                    due to the hype earlier on on chow (topic: where are the bad reviews for angela's & la voile) i brought 5 of my friends there. they were really nice but the service was EXTREMELY slow. the mussels didnt taste good at all...and similar to the table next to us, the steak was cooked rare to medium rare instead of medium to well done that my friend asked for. i ordered another steak dish (i think filet mignon) but it was SO bland, i kept adding the cream sauce they gave me, and pepper, and salt.....and it still tasted bland. my friends and i were all so dissapointed !!

                    this place is probably good for newbury, but its definitly not a good french bistro. blah!

                    1. re: kweesee

                      Wow. Hard to believe how fast the place sees to have nosedived. Has anyone had a good recent experience? I haven't been since two trips in the winter and had two very good experiences. I was also just remarking that they have one of the nicest patios on newbury

                      1. re: tamerlanenj

                        I was there in the very early spring and absolutely loved it. Haven't been back since.

                        1. re: finlero

                          i absolutely loved the two times i went in the winter and was besotted with the sweetbreads. i'm going back to see for myself if it has gone to h..in a handbasket. i don't think the early reviews were hype, though there was some euphoria at having a place to go on newbury that was this fresh. i'll be very sad if it all has not fallen into place.

                          1. re: teezeetoo

                            I think part of the key is to stick to the braised dishes and stews, like the sweetbreads and the blanquette. The steaks seem to be sub par.

                            1. re: tamerlanenj

                              I really liked the filet but that was around the first month they opened.

                        2. re: tamerlanenj

                          Five of us were there not long ago with my two year old nephew who was quite restless. In addition to everyone really enjoying the food, our boy spent half the evening being entertained by the owner, his fiancee and the wait staff - he even had a few turns around the kitchen. We're headed back this Saturday to try some of the dishes we missed on earlier visits. I don't find the service slow but they do allow you the time to linger over a meal. Our waitier was quite attentive without intruding on our meal or our convsersation. This has become a favorite for several of our friends for both the food and the atmosphere.

                          One or two dishes we've had may not have been stellar but certainly nothing we would not try again.

                          1. re: vonwotan

                            We just returned from another wonderful meal at La Voile. The owner prepared my sole meuniere at tableside, my stepfather had a wonderful halibut with a shellfish reduction as the sauce and my mother loved her poached salmon - done with a bit of lavender. For appetizers we had the bone marrow, pan-seared fois gras and a salad of green beans and beets. The wines were wonderful - appetizers with a bottle of Pouilly Fuisse and with the mains we had a wonderful bottle of white Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Deserts were also excellent, my parents each loved the charlotte aux fraises and the kitchen threw together some wonderful berries for me to nibble with my Chateau Rieussec. Service was wonderful, the wait staff and owner were attentive but unobtrusive and I am quite convinced that this is the best French bistro we currently have in Boston.

                            1. re: vonwotan

                              We had another great meal last weekend. They seem to be keeping up the standards they set.

                              I am so addicted to their warm chocolate cake.

                              1. re: BostonZest

                                Good to hear that people are still enjoying it. It's a stunning patio, and Newbury really needs a place like this.