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Broadway Bistro, Providence (review)

o
OOliver Oct 20, 2008 01:58 PM

This past Friday night, I had two freinds in town from NYC stopping for dinner on their way to the Cape for the weekend. They were originally due to arrive at 6 pm, but actually arrived at 8 pm. hungry and tired. They love small intimate places with good food, so I suggested we try BROADWAY BISTRO on the West Side, hearing so many good things this past summer. It turned out to be a great choice!

WE started with a few appetizers to split, on the suggestion of the waitress. One was the 'Granny Apple' salad, the other was the 'Beets and Prosciutto' - both delicious, and enough for the three of us to share.

FOR DINNER, two of us tried the pork tenderloin, which melted in your mouth. It had a sweet /sour glaze over it, and accompanied by a spoonful of vegetables (my only complaint - the veggies looked packaged or canned, not fresh). My other friend had the 'scallop' special, which was served over risotto. She said it was incredible. (Keep in mind, the menu has only about seven or eight entrees on it, though a nice variety of offerings).

THE service was friendly and attentative, without being overbearing . The atmosphere was quaint and cozy ; a candle-lit window table made for the perfect chilly autumn night. I was surprised that the restaurant was not full, considering how delicious the food was and so reasonably priced ($40 for each of us which included a 20% tip).

Thdy have an extensive wine menu (wine and beer only), but no desserts. A 'cup' of chocolate fudge and strawberries mixture was complimentary at the end of the meal.

If you haven't been here yet, I encourage you to go. It's probably one of Providence's best kept secrets.

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    Sap115 Oct 21, 2008 10:03 AM

    I was there about a month ago on a Saturday night and we were the only people in the restaurant. We loved it and want to go back sometime. It's wild that a place like this of such high quality and reasonable value gets no customers on a Saturday night, while people wait 2 hours to get into the Cheesecake Factory or the wretched Fire and Ice.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Sap115
      o
      OOliver Oct 21, 2008 11:09 AM

      LOL! I was telling my friends the same thing the other night when we were leaving. People line up for those places, yet this restaurant is empty. I wonder if it has anything to do with them not having a full liquor license, or full dessert menu? Either one should not keep people from going!

      1. re: OOliver
        b
        Bluebird Oct 21, 2008 12:28 PM

        We went several months ago and also mostly enjoyed it. We had one minor issue with one of the dishes, but not significant enough to ding the place or put it on a permanent do not go list. The liquor license is more of an issue for us. I personally enjoy a glass of wine with my meal. My husband ~ not so much. He is not a beer or wine drinker and enjoys a cocktail with his dinner. Them not having a full liquor license does deter us from going back. This combined with the minor issue put it lower on our list of places to go eat.

        Broadway Bisto is participating in Rewards Network , currently with 20% off for registered members.

    2. o
      Oshide Oct 22, 2008 05:04 AM

      I love Broadway Bistro, it is one of my favorite places to just have a beer with friends or take my wife for a simple, delicious meal. The menu is tweaked on what seems like a weekly basis, with some nice seasonal specialties always making an appearance. I do agree, I would love to see them implement a full bar, but it is a small place and probably can't really nurse a "bar crowd". Or maybe the owner just really loves wine and beer.
      It's funny, although I've never had more than a 15 minute wait for a table, I am surprised because I've always found them to be pretty busy for a neighborhood bistro. Not frenzied, crazy, can't move around type of place, but they definitely do some serious later business. I hear they serve food until 12 on weekdays and until closing on weekends.
      I've always had really fresh, delicous, hot food here, and the staff doesn't give off that snobby urban attitude that ruins some of the places in the area. I really like it for an easy, delicous meal that you can have after a rough day at work or for a special occasion. Definitely one of Providence's secrets.

      PS The complementary dessert is awesome

      1. c
        celeriac Oct 22, 2008 07:45 PM

        I went a few months ago and felt that overall he place was serviceable but nothing special. First off the decor is fine but banal. We were particularly unimpressed by the fake candles, bulbs that "flickr" in votive holders. Very weird.

        The biggest problem was certainly with the mussels appetizer, which were almost inedibly sandy. I was really amazed--I've never had a sandier owl of mussels. They offered the replace them, but we didn't feel like taking the time and just ate them anyway. it would have been gracious to take it off the bill, but they did offer to replace it, so I'm not really complaining.

        The mains were unmemorable. I know this because I can barely remember them. I remember thinking the prices were reasonable but the cooking and ingredient quality were pretty average. The other thing that was disappointing was the totally lackluster beer selection. The comp dessert was really great though.

        Generally, there's nothing wrong with the place, but not a whole lot to get excited about. Seems reliably OK. I would actually prefer to go down the block to Julian's, where the food is at least more interesting, even if sometimes less well crafted, and the bar is very good. But different strokes for different folks,

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