It’s DineLA Week in Pasadena! Great opportunity for us foodies to check out local restaurants that we haven’t been to and order from their special Prix Fixe menu.
My husband and I decided to try Cheval Blanc Bistro in Old Pasadena. Cheval Blanc is the newest addition to the Smith Brothers family of restaurants which include favorites like Smitty’s, Arroyo Chop House and Parkway Grill.
Located conveniently next to Pasadena’s Public Parking garage on De Lacey just between Green Street and Colorado Blvd, this restaurant has an antique bar with a unique communal table, wood-paneling and deep booths for privacy in the main room. The restaurant is “warmly lit” and offers a romantic atmosphere.
I made reservations on-line for a 6:45 seating and we were promptly led to an oversized booth. Freshly baked bread with butter was brought to our table and the sommelier made his rounds asking if we needed any assistance.
However, I wanted to try how their Mojito and declined the wine. It was freshly made, not quite the way I like it, but a solid 4 on a scale of 1 to 5. Victor was pretty happy with his Bloody Mary.
There was a variety of specials on the menu that almost tempted us to not order from the DineLA menu (see below), but we stayed true to our mission. In reviewing our offerings, we both decided to have the French Onion Soup and Crêpe Suzette. For the main dish, I ordered the duck and my husband tried the steak.
The soup was fantastic. It was hot and aromatic with a ton of aged gruyère cheese, caramelized sweet onion and bread. The portion was quite large and would be perfect for lunch on a cold winter day.
I loved the duck – crispy skin! Oh… just heavenly. It was served with home-style (at least the way I make them when I’m not too lazy) fried potatoes, perfectly seasoned.
Victor loved his hanger steak. It was prepared to perfection with just enough blood on it to make it medium rare, but not make you feel like a total carnivore. Mashed potatoes were perfect and the red wine shallot sauce hit just the right note.
Crepes for dessert were awesome! I am a connoisseur of crepes and make them at home every Saturday and these were thin and delicate with a wonderful orange glaze and just the right touch of powdered sugar.
I would have to say that this was one of the best dinners we had recently. To top it all off, the service was great.
So give Cheval Blanc Bistro a try… and if you go there by Friday the 15th, you can still partake in the DineLA menu. Tell them that Irina from 365 Things To Do In Pasadena sent you!
DineLA Menu through October 15, 2010
*Price excludes alcohol, tax and gratuity.
Choice of Appetizers
Soupe de Jour
Soupe à L’oignon
Caramelized sweet onion, aged gruyère soup
Salade de Laitue
Butter lettuce, tarragon vinaigrette
Choice of Entrees
Cheval Blanc’s Coq au Vin
Burgundy style braised chicken, bacon, baby carrots, pearl onions
Confit de Canard
Crispy duck confit, lyonnaise potato, red wine sauce
L’onglet à L’èchalotte
Hanger steak, mashed potato, green beans, red wine shallot sauce
Choice of Desserts
RED (glass) – La Griveliere 2009 Cotes du Rhone or WHITE (glass) – Joseph Faively 2008, Bourgogne $5
Cheval Blanc Bistro
41 S. De Lacey Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91105
(626) 577 – 4141
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