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Feb 8, 2011 02:37 AM

horrible meal at Liberte

I had forgotten how bad food can be until I had a business dinner at the new Liberte restaurant and bar in the Sofitel, last night.

Service was fine though I have to admit I found the French greetings from people who clearly did not speak French to be kitsch.

But the food would have been bad for airplane food.

My salade nicoise was again this "deconstructed" trash I hated at Le Meridian: is serving a genuine salade nicoise so politically incorrect? Plus grilled salmon is just wrong. I had the coq au vin, and this was a cruel end for the chickens who gave their lives for this meal. Just awful with gloppy sauce that would have been what McDonalds would call "coq au vin" sauce if they had any. And the chocolate Dome dessert was just terrible, the usual supermarket mousse.

I cannot imagine a worse meal. Well, maybe the service could have been bad and it wasn't, everyone was nice, though they did get my companion's order wrong and after he ate his dish they brought him what he ordered but comped it.

What a disappointment! I had hoped that Sofitel HQ would supervise and make sure that the hotel restaurant would serve decent representations of French fair!

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  1. Craig LaBan gave it zero stars on Sunday, 2/6/11 in the Inquirer. Pity you didn't read the review and save you or your business host money and aggravation.

    10 Replies
    1. re: george2

      Reading your review gave me deju vu from the Inky article. Sounds like a good place to avoid...surprising seeing how nice the hotel is.

        1. re: Seeker19104

          The name of the game is buyer beware and if you are travelling.. avoid hotel restaurants if you have a choice. Personally I am surprised that Leban wasted his time and the Inky's money reviewing it.

          1. re: cwdonald

            I dunno... it's a newspaper, and that review was pretty good reading. trashing a place every once in a while helps the column - and judging by the OP's experience, seems it was justified.

            1. re: Bob Loblaw

              Pity the poor out-of-town business person stuck at the Sofitel during the snow storm & having no other choice.

                1. re: PattiCakes

                  Square 1682 (which doesn't barely feel like a hotel restaurant in the slightest, and was pretty decent overall on my one visit there) is right across the street so I would have little sympathy for them feeling they had "no other choice."

                  1. re: sockii

                    There is Tria and Dandelion on the next block over and Argan is a half a block down the street from Liberte. Personally, I wouldn't care how deep the snow is to get to those places if I was stuck at the Sofitel.

              1. re: cwdonald

                I disagree that restaurants in hotels are necessarily bad!
                As was said Square 1682 is pretty good and is across the street in a hotel.
                Lacroix is in a hotel.
                Fountain is in a hotel.
                At the Sofitel in Chicago I had a delicious breakfast of fresh-baked pastries and crack-like French press coffee - one of the better breakfasts I have had in my life!
                Too bad the new Sofitel restaurant is awful!

                1. re: FattyFatMan

                  Quite right FFM. One can find examples of great hotel restaurants in most major cities. The list is so long I will not even attempt to note them. Usually the more highly regarded(priced) the hotel the more likely one is to find that great restaurant. A sage noted " Among the most valued amenities at a fine hotel is a great restaurant"