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Sep 30, 2011 03:09 AM

Owen's Bistro in Chino - Fine Dining in Inland Empire

I'm not sure I can do it justice now. But I had a great birthday dinner tonight at Owen's Bistro in downtown Chino. I realy appreciate that Chino Wayne has mentioned this place over a coulple of years, I can't be more regretful that I didn't try it before.

For $25 on Thursday, you are offered a 3 course meal, with several choices in each course. I think it is $30 on Fri and Sat. We had the brand new fall menu, so maybe there were kinks to work out.

The puree of beet soup was fantastic.
Roasted brussel sprouts are off the hook, if not too salty
The Camping Salmon served on a hot rock was the crowd fav
I had some chocolate flan I couldn't stop eating,

The patio was pretty , the hostess was delightfull and so accomodating. She was wonderful from her stories to her choice of wine by the glass. All of us will come back.

Owen's Bistro
5210 D St, Chino, CA 91710

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  1. Glad you enjoyed it so much. I'm surprised that the Camping Trip entree is still on the menu as a fall was on the menu this summer. I had chef's pepperoni sauce, and that was amazing!

    2 Replies
    1. re: attran99

      Yes we so enjoyed it. I just read your notes on another thread. We had a warm night and the patio was airy and comfortable. The brick and iron work are charming and the fountain outside added atmosphere. They have heat lamps if you wanted, and they have one end blocked from wind if needed. The inside looked a little small and plain/industrial in comparison. I'd say much of our enjoyment came from the feeling of a relaxing 2 hours on the patio. We made an early 5:30 reservation so we got the most from it.

      Denise answered a lot of questions we had. She said that the salmon served on the hot rock is so popular that they can't take it off the menu and I can see why. It is a showpiece and 3 people of our party of 5 ordered it. One said it was rare on the parts that hung over the rock (it is intended to be rare) so she moved it up onto the rock and cooked it to her liking. I think that's kind of cool. It is served with those delicious crisp potato slices and salad greens that wilt a bit over the top AND bacon dressing. They no longer had the pork shoulder with pepperoni sauce. They had pork loin with cherry sauce. There was Halibut and I had the Duck Confit with white beans. They haven't updated the online menu yet, but you can keep an eye on the menu page:

      I started with a salad that had crisped pork belly cubes and dried cherries. It was ruined by a weird sweet vanilla yogurt dressing that I unfortunately mixed in well before tasting. I'd ask for a balsalmic viniagrette (they had one on hand) next time and it would be perfect. They are very nice about accomodating allergies (one of us had egg alergy and doesn't like pork so no bacon dressing) and changing out for taste preferences, which included cobbling up a dessert on the fly for our egg allergic.

      If the Beet Soup is any indication, the chef really knows how to make wonderful soups. I saw raves elsewhere for his pureed cauliflower soup.

      I had the duck confit with white bean ragout. It was nice but not really up my alley. I kind of knew that, but decided to go for it and be open minded. It was good if a little salty. The beans had complex flavors. The man at the table had the Filet Mignon (requires a $ supplement as does the New York with blue cheese sauce), which was tender but a bit over the medium rare ordered, so I might ask for rare if I got this. It came with green beans and pureed potatoes with sauce.

      I had a chilled chocolate s'mores dish--I think he called it panna cotta, but it wasn't that. It was milk chocolate ganache (my guess) sprinkled with graham cracker crumbs (wish it had more of those) topped with a bruleed marshmallow. I was only going to have a bite or two but I ate it all. One person had the creme brulee and wouldn't share. Another had cheesecake with berries and it was gone in a moment so I didn't get a taste.I should mention that all of the dinnerwase and presentation was creative and handsome.

      I didn't get a look at the wine list but one they have Dale Bros beers and one had a Little Yellow Pils. 3 of use had glass of wine (paring can be had for $20) selected by Denise at our request. I didn't even ask what I had, I was just relaxed about everythinag, but I enjoyed it. One had a reisling with the beet soup and another a very interesting Chard with the salmon.

      Owen's is terifficly well priced for a 3 course meal of this quality. At that price you can take chances with your ordering-- we'll be back to explore more. We also plan to try the Tuesday night pasta dinner, various pastas, some homemade, with assorted sauces, soup or salad and dessert choice for $16. There are reasonably priced addon's like meatballs, chicken parm etc. They seat at 5:30, 6:00 and 6:30.

      Owen's is worth a bit of a drive and I hope the surrounding communities will support it. I prefer it to several places in Clarement .

      1. re: coconutz

        The chef's been experimenting a lot with a s'mores dessert. I had a rendition in late July where it was a marshmallow pudding, graham cracker crust cumbles, chocolate ganache, and marshmallow brulee. A month later my sister had a more straight-forward s'mores like dish. Yours sounds like the dish has developed a bit more, too.
        Still so glad that you and your guests had a great time. I need to plan to join them for their wine dinners. We've been so busy that we haven't been able to make a reservation.

    2. Glad you enjoyed Owen's Bistro, it makes me very happy that this small independent restaurant seems to be making it in Chino. We have so many chain operations, or mediocre casual restaurants in the area, this is the shining star of dining in Chino.

      2 Replies
      1. re: ChinoWayne

        Damn, I gotta hit it up some day. Is there anything to do in the nearby surrounding area of Chino, Wayne?

        ... If i happen to make the trek out there of course.

        And is Chino very very very close to Pomona???

        1. re: kevin

          The center of Chino is about 15 or 20 minutes south east of downtown Pomona, Kevin. No night life other than chain restaurants or movie theaters. If you are interested, there are two air museums at the airport, and still plenty of cows. There is a branch of Joey's BBQ on Riverside and East End that turns out some decent brisket and beef ribs, and sometimes has a singing cowboy in the backyard.

          Joey's BBQ
          117 W 2nd St, Pomona, CA 91766