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Feb 22, 2012 01:03 PM

Herald-Tribune Review of Cafe L'Europe -- Sarasota

Local restaurant reviewers usually over-exaggerate the qualities of area restaurants . Not in the case of this lukewarm review of Café L’Europe, where the Herald-Tribune critic is basically saying that the restaurant has been coasting for years and is, essentially, mediocre and expensive. He’s right.

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  1. My wife an I dined there a few weeks back, just because it was the only place with empty tables at 6 PM on a Sunday afternoon. All other places in St Armands circle were packed.
    If you're into nostalgia for mediocre French restaurants in the USA in the 1970s and 80s, this is the place for you. They boast about being open since 1973, and their menu probably has not changed since then. Not that there's anything wrong with traditional dishes. Just that these seem so uninspired, tired, and one step beyond mediocre, bordering on bad. Charging what they charge, and being "The" French place in town, is just sad. Good luck to them, I say.
    To the owner: Dude, give the chef a double espresso and wake him up.

    2 Replies
    1. re: mbritos1

      Much better French place only 15 minutes away on Longboat Key -- Maison Blanche. Our 2 dinners there last year were very nice.

      1. re: Steve R

        The husband and wife who run Maison Blanche had a one-star Michelin restaurant in Paris and moved it and their family here. I lived in Paris and a one-star Michelin rating is big, not like all the “stars” that are thrown around here by local reviewers. I dined at Maison Blanche just last night and, to me, Maison Blanche is the best restaurant in the area.