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Lunch at Fifi's French Bistro, Pacific Grove

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Lunch at Fifi's French Bistro, Pacific Grove

anli | Jun 20, 2005 10:29 PM

I found parking right in front at noon today. There is a pastry/bakery case in front as you walk in, and a large main room and a smaller side room. The three of us were seated in the main room, which was only a third full. Several parties came in after us, but the restaurant was never more than half full. There is a regular menu and daily specials of salads, sandwiches and entrees. There is french onion soup and a soup of the day (today's was vegetable curry). A choice of soup or salad comes with a sandwich or entree. You can also request a half salad and get a cup of soup for the price of the full salad. I chose the half salad of avocado, tomato and bay shrimp with Louis dressing and the french onion soup. My son had a warm lamb sandwich with lemon aioli on francesa bread (reminded me a little of focaccia) with the soup, while my daughter had a grilled chicken sandwich with jack cheese and basil mayonnaise, along with the house salad. Both sandwiches came with excellent frites. A basket of french bread with butter came shortly after the host took our order. The kids ordered soft drinks, while I tried the raspberry iced tea.

The soups take a little time, as they put them under the grill as the orders come in. Somehow, there was a glitch with my order and I was presented with a house salad instead of soup. When I corrected the server, the host came over to apologize, saying he should have caught his own error - naturally I wouldn't want salad to start when I was getting a salad already. My soup came a few minutes later, and while the cheese was well melted, it wasn't as brown as I usually like, but that is a small quibble. The broth was well flavored, though a tad salty upon first taste. By the end, I didn't notice it. Overall, a very decent rendition of a classic and no stinting on the amount of cheese. My salad was just the right amount of shrimp and ripe avocado, but there were only 2 slices of roma tomato, and a few rings of red onion. I would have liked more tomato, as they were ripe and sweet.

The sandwiches were both pronounced delicious, and the frites were top notch. It was a lot of food, so we boxed two halves of the sandwiches for the road. The server brought a tray of tempting desserts, but we couldn't eat another bite. We enjoyed the meal even with the glitches in service,( we had a little mix up with the check, but it was caught in time). I would return for dinner if given the option. All our selections were $10.95, and we felt it was good value. We noticed a number of locals dining there, which is always a good sign. I recall hearing some issues with this place, but am able to report that all appears well.

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