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New French Cafe in Sausalito

It's located next to Taste of the Himalayas on Bridgeway at the northern end of town. The name is B then a symbol that looks like a leaf? O - Blo? Bio? I've driven by but haven't stopped to figure out the name...Has anyone been there? Thanks!

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  1. It's Bio - A French Café. I stopped there today, looked around, talked to the very engaging owner, and took some photos. It wasn't time for me to eat and I restrained myself from trying some of the wonderful-looking things in the front case. The owner grew up in France, has had a take-out-only place on Union Square in SF for 12 years, and opened this cafe three weeks ago. Open seven days, breakfast, lunch, and dinner (brunch on weekends). Crepes of many types, many varieties of other things, many of them gluten free. The chocolate covered items in the case are made with 85%-type chocolate (didn't ask the brand). I'm absolutely going to come back because the whole operation appeared to be quality all the way. You should check it out too.

    Photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausalito


    2 Replies
    1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

      Thanks for stopping by to check it out. I look forward to your report!

      1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

        I went there for lunch today and the food was as good as I expected. I was a bit unadventurous ordering, having two 1/2 sandwiches, the Chicken, Basil, Gruyere and the Prosciutto, House Jam, Goat Cheese. Surprisingly to me, I preferred the chicken one. Somehow the prosciutto one didn't have as much flavor as I expected. But the quality of both was excellent, including the rolls which I'll leave to someone else to describe. For dessert I chose the confection in the front case of Dark Chocolate, Organic Peanut Butter, Fleur de Sel. It was perfection; I don't see how it could be improved. So there you go. A French cafe in Sausalito that people should check out for themselves. I look forward to trying many other things there.

        More photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausalito

      2. So I went there for lunch today with two friends. Where do I start? This was one of the worst restaurant experiences I've ever had in my life. Which was worse - the food or the service? The service but not by much. Here's what happened (and by the way my friends and I are polite, enthusiastic, experienced restaurant goers):
        * We walked in and no one was around. There was another customer waiting at the front counter who said she had come once before but left because no one appeared to help her.
        * A woman (I assume the owner) came wandering out of a hall and looked at us all inquiringly as if to say "What are all of you doing here?" She wasn't very friendly and, even worse, had several stains on her white blouse. She told us to sit anywhere.
        * She finally drifted over to our table with three menus for each of us: Breakfast, Brunch, and Lunch. She said we could order from any of the menus, but, unfortunately, the menus were very barebones with little explanation and confusing besides. When we asked her for help, she was very unhelpful and sounded annoyed. To make things a little more confusing, they have a variety of sandwiches in the case in front that did not appear on the menu. Are they just for takeout, for decoration? What's the deal?
        * I ordered a galette with jambon de Paris (which is what it said on the menu - she corrected me saying that it was ham - I know that). One friend got an omelette with Gruyere, and one got a salad with seared salmon; she really had to work to get the explanation of the salad out of our server.
        * Within a reasonable amount of time, someone brought the salmon salad, and that was all that happened for almost 10 minutes. By the way, the place was half full at the time. Finally someone brought the omelette and the galette - but wait it's not a galette - it's another omelette. (I know the difference.)Not only was it the wrong dish, it was in little shreds like you get when your omelette sticks to the pan. It did have the jambon ("ham") in it, but the whole thing was small and dried out. Each of our dishes was served with a large portion of bland stewed vegetables that needed a lot of salt (which you have to get up and go over to a table to get)to make them palatable. The reason I didn't send my dish back is that I was so aggravated that I didn't want to spend any extra time there.
        * When I went over to pay (who knows how long it would have taken the check to come?), I told the woman about the mix-up. Did she apologise, take it off the bill? Neither, but she did offer to make me a galette right then. Just what I need - a second lunch.
        * I'm glad others have had better experiences, but you couldn't pay me to go back there. It's no excuse that they opened recently. Not only do they have another place in the city, but the general attitude was so negative that I really can't imagine how they've been successful. I wish them luck - they're going to need it!

        1. I believe "bio" is the term applied to organics.

          1. I stopped here this mid-morning and picked up one of their granola-and-dark chocolate "cups" (my term) that I've had my eye on. It was as good as I expected, dense granola with some sort of binder, plus a few cherries, encased in a high-quality dark chocolate. It seemed and felt quite large, so I weighed it. 6.7 ounces and a great deal for that quality and size for $4. I cut it in half and saved the other half for later.

            There was no one in front as I walked in, so I just called out "Hello" and the one woman who was working at that time came out of the kitchen. I don't have a problem with that at all. She was most gracious and helpful as I asked her about a few of the other enticing things on display.

            The granola-dark chocolate: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausali...

            1 Reply
            1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

              I'm glad that you're having good experiences there. Maybe they'll get their act together...

            2. I had lunch there today, choosing the Salmon Quiche ($5) and Chocolate Bread Pudding ($4). The quite large portion of Salmon Quiche is different that any quiche I've ever had. I liked it a lot, but it wasn't a rich creamy quiche, being more of a "soft loaf" thing. That's a poor description but the best I can do. I was forewarned, because it looked exactly like that in the front case, and I'm glad I tried it. The Chocolate Bread Pudding was also a quite large serving, dense and rich with lots of very good chocolate amid the croissant-type bread. In both cases, very good food, unique interpretations, and very good value.

              Photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausalito

              1 Reply
              1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

                Update on the Salmon Quiche. Had it mid-morning today and it's a bit smaller, $4 instead of $5, and self-contained instead of in a container. The owner made the change because she was wasting all of the containers the other way. Same delicious and unique quiche.

                Photo of the quiche:

              2. Met someone these this morning for a business meeting and had the Croque Monsieur. This interpretation was open faced on a brioche. Quite decadent and good.

                Photo of Croque Monsieur: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausali...

                1. Today I have my first real meal here instead of just a pastry or (one time) a sandwich. I had the Duck Confit Galette ($14). It was on the Breakfast & Brunch menu but I'll bet you could order it any time. The lunch menu was also available as were all the things in the front cases. I'm no expert on French food, but I'll proclaim this to be wonderful. The duck confit was in a pile of many thin slices, just fatty enough to be interesting. Counterclockwise from the duck was the sweet potato whatever (scalloped sweet potatoes?), also wonderful; kale salad which I loved in spite of generally not liking kale; and ratatouille which was fine but a bit bland to my taste. With that one small picky negative, the whole plate was a winner in flavor and generous quantity. There were two servers working today with the owner in the kitchen cooking. There were several tables filled and everyone seemed to be quite happy. They are getting their act together. Note, though, that there is a sign at the front desk that says something like "Come into the kitchen to find me" so it's still that sort of place, which is fine with me.

                  Larger photo: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausali...

                  1. Had lunch at Bio today, this time the Salmon & Goat Cheese Crepe ($14) that came with a generous serving of ratatouille. Is was simply excellent. Live music was playing as I've often found. Yes, sometimes they're short-handed, but not today and even when they are I don't mind; the food is so good and the place is so pleasant. It's become my standard "meeting place" for all sorts of purposes. Also, I can never leave without one of their excellent dark chocolate creations in the front case.

                    Larger photo of the Salmon & Goat Cheese Crepe