At 1:00 PM on a weekday afternoon, Bizou was packed. The noise of the restaurant assaulted my ears as soon as I sat down and conversation remained at a dull roar throughout our visit except for towards the end when the crowd thinned out.
The prix fixe menu offered two choices of appetizer and entrée. Appetizer was soup of the day (onion with cabbage) or a salad of watercress, radicchio, walnuts and pear. The salad was lovely and crunchy, bitter greens offset by sweet pear and mellow walnuts.
We also tried the Dungeness crab cake appetizer off the regular menu. Smallish crab cake accompanied by fennel salad, blood orange, and avocado. I grew up eating blue crabs so was a bit skeptical about a Dungeness crab cake; it was really good though. Full-on crab flavor and texture, very yummy.
Entrée was duck confit or steelhead trout. I love duck confit and this one was tasty, accompanied by well-cooked braised lentils, frisee and caramelized apples yum! The trout was also good, with an interesting braised lettuce accompaniment (another favorite of mine, cooked lettuce).
Bizou allowed you to choose dessert from the menu and I went with the vacherin having seen its praises sung on the board. It was delicious, coffee ice cream mingling perfectly with rich bitter chocolate sauce and crunchy sweet meringue.
Service was a bit on the slow side, but the restaurant was very full and the waitstaff looked like they were moving as quickly as they could. The service picked up as the place emptied.
I would definitely recommend Bizou. Lovely restaurant especially with the afternoon sun slanting in. The only drawback was the noise level, even worse in our case since we were seated next to a boisterous group that looked like it was going to wine and dine until the early evening. Still, a restaurant that offers such enjoyment to its patrons is well worth a visit.