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The Bijou Blog

(Little JP at boarding school! No just kidding, it was not quite that bad!)

Chefs are always asked what their favorite foods are; their favorite wines, restaurants etc., but nobody ever asks if there is something they just can’t stand.

When I was very young and growing up in South Africa my parents sent me to boarding school for a better education. It was a great school and has become one of the best private schools in South Africa today. However, at the time (1957), food for the boarders was not a prime concern. As a matter of fact it was pretty damn awful. In the best British tradition, you had to finish everything on your plate or you were punished. I think subconsciously that’s when and where I decided to become a chef so I would never have to eat lousy food again! 

Which brings me back to favorite foods! I have cooked and eaten all over the world. I am not afraid to try anything once and I very seldom turn away anything without at least a bite. I don’t understand the crazy people out there who eat disgusting things just for the shock value or to entertain on TV. There are only two things I have never been able to enjoy. Cilantro and Brussels sprouts. There … I have confessed.

I have discovered I am not the only person in the world to feel this way. There is even a website called ihatecilantro.com. That’s how serious it is! There is some discussion that the aversion to cilantro might be hereditary.

The strange thing is, I love the aroma and taste of coriander which is the seed of the cilantro plant and is used extensively as a flavoring in South African cuisine. Cilantro smells and tastes like perfumey soap to me and has ruined so many great Mexican and Indian dishes for me. I am trying to like it but at my age I’m not betting on any changes in my taste buds soon.

Brussels sprouts I can handle if I cook them myself. I steam first (gag at the smell!) and then sauté in olive oil with shallots, garlic, bacon, and lemon. Like to get them a little brown on edges, then finish with a touch of balsamic vinegar and butter, salt and ground pepper! Actually, with all that, you could leave the Brussels sprouts out and it would taste pretty good!

So unless it’s my night off or the chefs have started a revolution you will very seldom see cilantro and Brussels on the menu at the Bijou Café. There is a whole world of other food out there so who is going to miss those two culinary varmints!

Photo above: Little JP at boarding school. No, just kidding, it was not quite that bad! 

One of the reasons the Bijou Café has been successful over the years is our location across the street from the Sarasota Opera. When we started the restaurant in 1986 there were several nay sayers who predicted a short life for the Bijou because this part of town was pretty rundown with only a few struggling businesses getting by.

The Opera House had recently been re-furbished and was on its way to becoming one of the top Opera companies in the country.

People loved the idea of having dinner at the Bijou before the performance and we have never had an empty seat prior to an opera performance ever since!

So thank you Sarasota Opera. We love having you as neighbors and we also love to hear the performers practicing their arias as they walk down First Street!

Tonight’s Opera is Bizet’s “Pearl Fishers”, a must see for true opera fans.

Set in legendary Sri Lanka, the story follows two men whose vow of eternal friendship is threatened when the object of their mutual desires, the priestess Léïla, suddenly returns igniting a dangerous triangle of forbidden love.

This proven Sarasota Opera favorite features the famous Act I duet for tenor and baritone, "Au fond du temple saint", which is sure to lift you out of your seat. For more info on Sarasota Opera click here. 

Hanger One_Blimp_033

We have been serving Hangar One Vodka at the Bijou Café for several years now. I love its smoothness and intense flavors.

There are two features that make Hangar One Vodka different from other popular premium vodkas. It is distilled from Viognier grapes and it is done in the old abandoned Alameda Naval Air Station aircraft hangar (thus the name). When you get a taste of it you will find out why it is becoming the call vodka of choice for many people. Ask for a taste the next time you are at the bar in the Bijou Café.

They make several flavors and each one has a unique story behind it. I will write about each flavor in following blogs but first let’s look at Buddha’s Hand.

We have a sample of a Buddha’s Hand fruit in a specimen jar and it is very unusual looking. The Buddha’s Hand isn’t just a funny-looking lemon. It’s actually the lemon’s great grandfather. And like all great lineage, its flavors and aromas run so much deeper — from jasmine to basil; apricot to fruitcake. Its acid bite is milder than a standard lemon, allowing these secondary flavors to take center stage, and dance a ballet on your palate. They start by distilling the whole fruit — seeds, skin, pits, juice, oils and all. The purified lemon extracts in other vodkas give you a single note. The Buddha’s Hand plays the whole symphony. (Maybe that’s what all the fingers are for.)

They have a blimp they fly around the country promoting their Vodka and I was fortunate to go for a fun filled flight on!

 

Hanger One_Blimp_009

4 ppl

In September of 2012, Freddy Matson of Vineyard Brands hosted a trip to Argentina and Chile for a group of "Wine Guys" and me to visit wineries and meet the winemakers.

It was an amazing experience and we are delighted to be offering some of the wines we tasted for our upcoming Forks & Corks wine dinner.

We are also pouring some excellent wines from Spain, so it will be quite interesting to compare styles and tastes. We've planned a fabulous five-course menu to complement these magnificent wines!

Call 941-366-8111 today to make your reservations for this unforgettable winemaker dinner.

The full menu is below: 

 

 

Location: The Bijou Cafe, 1287 First St., Sarasota

Date: Friday, January 2

6:30 pm Reception

7:00 om Sit down for Dinner

Price: $85.00 per person (plus tax and gratuity)

 

2013 Forks & Corks 

Winemaker Dinner Menu

Featuring the wines of Chile and Spain

 

HORS D'OEUVRES

Smoked salmon devilled eggs

Shrimp Ceviche Shooters

Chilean Empanadas

Goat cheese rounds with tomato marmalade

2011 Cono Sur Viognier, Colchagau, Chile 

2011 Marques de Caceres, Rioja Rose, Spain

 

FIRST COURSE

Scallop a la Plancha

Served atop creamy white bean puree, chorizo  

2011 Marques de Caceres,  "Deusa Nai" Albarino, Rias Baixas, Spain

 

SECOND COURSE

Marinated Oysters on half shell

With fresh Key lime and cilantro

2011 Cono Sur, Organic Sauvignon Blanc,

  

THIRD COURSE

Oven Roasted Chilean Sea Bass

Cumin scented glaze, avocado cream, roasted corn

2008 Cono Sur, "Vision" Chardonnay, Casablanca Valley, Chile

  

Pisco Sour lemon sorbet palate cleanser  

 

ENTRÉE

Grilled Tenderloin of Beef

Fresh herb chimichuri sauce, 

roast garlic rosemary potato 

2005 Marques de Caceres, Reserva Rioja, Spain

2010 Cono Sur, "Vision",  Pinot Noir, Colhagua Valley, Chile 

DESSERT

Lavender scented poached pear on puff pastry

2011 Marques de Caceres, Satinela 

 

For more information about the "Fresh Originals" and the Forks & Corks Food and Wine Festival, click here.

 

 

fried-chickenDuring the summer months the Bijou Café is closed on Sundays, but now that the busy season is upon us we will be open for Sunday dinner starting at 5 pm. Our little family at the Bijou Café is ready to invite you into our home and give you a Sunday dinner that will leave you feeling satisfied, happy and ready to tackle the week ahead of you.

In addition to our regular menu, we have a new introduction for Sunday nights: special homestlye meals.

Our chefs love the opportunity to whip one of their favorite creations, transporting you and your taste buds to their hometowns all over world. Just wait till you try Max's fried chicken!

Book your reservations now by clicking here or calling 941.366.8111. We'll see you Sunday!

Shay-and-JP

Foder’s, the leading name in travel guides for over 75 years, today announced that we have been recognized as a 2012 Fodor’s Choice selection. This distinction designates us as a leader in our field for service, quality, and value in the 2012 year.

We are honored to receive this distinctive award from Fodor’s. For almost 27 years we’ve set the standard in Sarasota for fine cuisine, unparalleled service and value, and we are thrilled to be recognized for this.

The editors and experts of Fodor’s have been selecting only the top fifteen percent of their listed properties and activities as Fodor’s Choice award recipients since 1988. Every year, Fodor’s writers experience, examine and evaluate thousands of hotels, restaurants and attractions in their travels across the globe. While every business included in the guide is deemed worth a traveler’s time, only those offering a truly remarkable experience are given the Fodor’s Choice designation.

As a 2012 Fodor’s Choice property, we will receive special recognition in the next Fodor’s guidebook to this area and on fodors.com. For more than 75 years Fodor’s has presented travelers with the very top recommendations from hidden-away restaurants to can't-miss museums, and being picked as the best of the best is a great honor.

Come in for dinner and try Sarasota's Fodor's Choice restaurant to see for yourself why we have been chosen for this amazing award.

 

 

happy-hr-squareBig news! Today we are introducing a brand new daily happy hour!

We're so excited and plan to have a lot of fun over in the Gossips Lounge from 5 to 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Here's why: martinis are $5 (half their regular price) and selections from our Bar Bites menu are $5 as well.

My favorite item on the Bar Bites menu is the Duck Quesadilla with chevre and crème fraiche, which is a fun twist on two classics, and obviously even more delicious when paired with one of our specialty martinis.

Here's the full Happy Hour menu:

 

$5 BAR BITES:

  • Trilogy of Soups
  • Pepper Steak “Frikadelles”
  • Pommes Frites
  • Duck Quesadilla
  • Boerewors “Stukkies”
  • Waffle Chips with blue cheese + balsamic glaze
  • Burger Slider
  • Empanadas

$5 DRINK SPECIALS:

  • $5 well martinis
  • $5 well drinks
  • $5 select red and white wines by the glass
  • $1 off craft and domestic beer

 

With this new Happy Hour, we really want to invite the next generation of Sarasotans in to the Bijou. Our lounge is so fun and comfortable and really the perfect spot for an after work drink. Come join us!

We're very happy summer is nearly over and we're starting to enjoy some cool weather. On the other hand, that means the end of our weekly prix fixe Summer in the City menu for the year. Come in this week, Oct. 8-13, for your last opportunity to try it at lunch or dinner 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

IMG 0573GRAVLAX SALAD Bibb lettuce, house cured gravlax, cucumber, tomato, capers creamy herb dressing, marble rye croutons

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:    

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST With cheese and truffle sachetti, asparagus, shiitake mushrooms and lemon butter wine sauce

PAN SEARED SEA SCALLOP With lobster and edamame succotash

GRILLED SKIRT STEAK With chipotle mashed potato and chimichurri sauce

For Dessert: 

ROASTED APPLE AND RICOTTA CREPES With maple syrup and candied walnuts

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter:  

GRAVLAX SALAD Bibb lettuce, house cured gravlax, cucumber, tomato, capers creamy herb dressing, marble rye croutons

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree:  

GRILLED SHRIMP AND PASTA On angel hair pasta with roasted tomato sauce

CLASSIC GRILLED REUBEN Boars Head corned beef brisket, sauerkraut, Thousand Island dressing, thick marble rye

CHOPPED MEDITERRANEAN SALAD Grilled lamb, romaine, feta, olives, artichokes, onion, cucumber, croutons, sun-dried tomato, herb vinaigrette

 

Click here to make a reservation, or call  941.366.8111 and join us at your convenience! Reservations are recommended but not required. And of course our full dinner and lunch menus are available now as well. Lastly, click here to follow us on Facebook! 

jp-chileWow, wow, wow!

That's almost all I can say about my recent wine trip to Chile and Argentina. Thanks to my good friend, Freddy Matson and his company, Vineyard Brands, I spent a week sipping, tasting and thoroughly enjoying some excellent wines.

I'd like to share some of those tastes with you this Friday at our First Friday Wine Tasting. It's the last wine tasting of the year, so please mark your calenders and come downtown for an extraordinary tasting! 

 

FIRST FRIDAY WINE TASTING
From 5:00 until 7:00pm in the Bird Room
Friday, October 5th

A variety of intensely delicious wines from Chile and Argentina, along with some tasty Latin style appetizers and cheese.

J.P. will also have some memorable pictures of the trip playing as a slide show! (They have been carefully edited so you will not see what really went on behind the scenes!)

Only $18.00 per Person

Gather some friends and make a night of it. Join us for dinner after the tasting and take a gander (these are geese!) at our super value prix fixe menu "Summer in the City." First Friday also means many of the art galleries and shops are open late and invite you to stroll in.

Good news! We're back on Mondays! As summer winds down, we have reopened on Monday for lunch and dinner.

Here are our prix fixe menus for this week, Oct. 1 to 6, and we are happy to report you can have our famous "N'Awlins" style jambalaya at lunch or dinner all week...

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

BIJOU CAESAR Romaine lettuce, herb croutons, Parmesan crisps, creamy roasted garlic dressing, anchovy

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:   

BRAISED PORK SHANK Brussel sprout and apple hash

RAINBOW TROUT Rum glazed and served with corn pudding and braised greens

JAMBALAYA Our version of the N’Awlins classic served over white rice

For Dessert: 

RHUBARB AND PEACH CRISP With vanilla bean ice cream

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter:  

BIJOU CAESAR Romaine lettuce, herb croutons, Parmesan crisps, creamy roasted garlic dressing, anchovy

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree:  

PULLED PORK TARTINE With cumin cabbage, pickle and waffle chips

RAINBOW TROUT Rum glazed and served with corn pudding and braised greens

JAMBALAYA Our version of the N’Awlins classic served over white rice

 

As always, we have an excellent wine of the week available to pair with your prix fixe menu for $6 per glass and $24 per bottle. Click here to make a reservation, or call  941.366.8111. The full dinner and lunch menus are available too, so you can try any and all of your Bijou favorites.

PS: We're doing lots of fun stuff on Facebook, including posting photos of all our tasty specials. Click here to follow us.

Two beautiful things to note on this week's Summer in the City menu: 1. Our caprese salad — always a classic and we prepare it classically with fresh basil, mozzarella and heirloom tomatoes. That's available at lunch or dinner. 2. Surf and Turf Sliders! Only available at lunch — skirt steak and crab cake. Wow. Here are the full menus for this week, Sept. 24 to 29:   

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

capreseCAPRESE SALAD Fresh mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes, basil, extra virgin olive oil, balsamic glaze

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:   

GRILLED SKIRT STEAK Soy & balsamic glaze, creamy grits and aspargus

HERB ROASTED CHICKEN BREAST White wine & lemon, green vegetable succotash, roasted creamer potatos

SHRIMP, SCALLOPS & MUSSELS Tossed with garlic, tomato, vermouth & basil with gnocchi

For Dessert: 

MOLTEN CHOCOLATE CAKE Rich, dark and luscious

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter:  

CAPRESE SALAD Fresh mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes, basil, extra virgin olive oil, balsamic glaze

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree:  

SURF & TURF SLIDERS Crab cake, remoulade and arugula, skirt steak, fried onions, blue cheese butter

HERB ROASTED CHICKEN BREAST White wine & lemon, green vegetable succotash, roasted creamer potatos

SHRIMP, SCALLOPS & MUSSELS Tossed with garlic, tomato, vermouth & basil with gnocchi 

 

Try the special wine of the week at a special price — $6 per glass and $24 per bottle, every week. We look forward to seeing you! Click here to make a reservation, or call  941.366.8111. Here's a link to the full dinner and lunch menus, as well. Be sure to join all the fun we are having on Facebook by following us. Click here.

Have you ever tried Nueske's bacon? It's only the best Applewood-smoked bacon available, prepared the same way (with a few tweaks for modern production), since 1933. We've got it for you on this week's Summer in the City lunch menu, and three tasty choices for you at dinner, as well:   

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

ROASTED PEAR & SPINACH Red onion, goat cheese, dried cherries and candied walnuts tossed with port wine vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:  

CHICKEN PAILLAIRD Olive oil, lemon and garlic, with roast vegetables

LOCH DUART ROASTED SALMON Tomato and lemon broth with mashed potato

CENTER CUT PORK CHOP Pink peppercorn and brandy sauce with mustard gnocchi

For Dessert: 

BIJOU KEY LIME TART

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

ROASTED PEAR & SPINACH Red onion, goat cheese, dried cherries and candied walnuts tossed with port wine vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree:  

blt-bijou-cafeSPINACH, BACON & FETA QUICHE Served with arugula salad

NUESKE'S “BLT” Semolina bread, avocado and mayo, served with petite caesar or pomme frites

CHICKEN PAILLAIRD Olive oil, lemon and garlic, with roasted vegetables

 

Our wine of the week is available for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle, at lunch or dinner.

Come in to the Bijou this week to try this special menu — make a reservation online by clicking here, or call us at 941.366.8111. And please follow us on Facebook for news on specials and more, every day!

Beets. Totaly tasty, but even tastier with a bit of goat cheese. Come try our beet and arugula salad this week, or any of the other awesome selections — including our signature Bijou Crab Cakes! — on this week's prix fixe Summer in the City menu for Sept. 10-15. 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

 BEET & ARUGULA SALAD Goat cheese, red onion, croutons, with a white balsamic vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree: 

crab-cakesBIJOU CRAB CAKES Creole remoulade and veg du jour

VEAL PICCATA Sauteed garlic, artichokes, lemon, butter and parsley

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST With mushroom ravioli, light lemon cream sauce and chevre

For Dessert:

KARPATKA Polish style Napoleon

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

BEET & ARUGULA SALAD Goat cheese, red onion, croutons, with a white balsamic vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree: 

CHICKEN CAESER SALAD Our version of the classic with grilled chicken breast

SHRIMP FRANCHESE Lemon, parsley, garlic and butter over angel hair pasta

BIJOU HAMBURGER Smoked cheddar cheese, carmelized onions, waffle chips

  

Try any of the above with our wine of the week for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle.

Join us this week! Reservations are recommended but not required. You can make a reservation online by clicking here, or call us at 941.366.8111. And do follow us on Facebook for news on specials and dishes du jour throughout the week.

phil-jennDuring the summer we host a wine tasting every First Friday, and this one is extra special because it's JPs last day before a two-week sojourn in South America!

Join us from 5 to 7 p.m. this Fri., Sept. 7, for wines from all over the world poured by sommeliers Jenn and Phil (pictured at right!), plus a tasting of some fine new crafted beers we are now featuring.

Small dishes and passed hors d'oeuvres are included as well as a scrumptious artisanal cheese board at only $18 per person.


Gather some friends and make a night of it. Join us for dinner after the tasting and take a gander at our super value prix fixe menu "Summer in the City." First Friday also means many of the art galleries and shops are open late and invite you to stroll in.

It's summer, come downtown, Sarasota, and enjoy First Friday with us! Free valet parking. 

Did you have a nice Labor Day? We did, and hope we can help welcome you back into the work-week with a lovely new prix fixe Summer in the City menu for Sept. 3-8. Chocolate mousse and cookies, anyone? Or maybe some mini osso buco Milanese...

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner:
$32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

osso-bucco

SPINACH SALAD Neuske’s bacon, Brie, roasted garlic, hibiscus flower vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:

GRILLED SALMON Ginger peach relish, coconut rice

HALF ROAST CHICKEN Free range chicken, white bean cassoulet, natural jus

MINI OSSO BUCO Braised with orange and fennel broth a la Milanese

For Dessert:

CHOCOLATE MOUSSE assorted cookies

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch:
$16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

SPINACH SALAD Neuske’s bacon, Brie, roasted garlic, hibiscus flower vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree: 

GRILLED SALMON Ginger peach relish, coconut rice

HALF ROAST CHICKEN Free range chicken, white bean cassoulet, natural jus

WILD MUSHROOM GRILLED CHEESE Shitakes and creminis, creamy Gruyère, semolina bread, petite Caesar salad

  

Our mushroom grilled cheese is a staff favorite! The side Caesar even makes it a vaguely healthy choice. Try it, or any of the above options, with our wine of the week for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle.

Ready for dinner? Make a reservation online by clicking here, or call us at 941.366.8111. Follow us on Facebook for news on specials and dishes du jour throughout the week.

You asked and we are happy to serve them up: this week's prix fixe Summer in the City menus (Aug. 27-Sept. 1), featuring one of everyone's favorites, a Nicoise salad. Yum. Read on:

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner: $32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

08-27-salad-nicoiseSALADE NICOISE Classic composed salad on leaf lettuce with olives, green beans, tomato, hardboiled egg and French dressing

SOUP DU JOURHot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:

ALMOND CRUSTED CORVINA Roasted red pepper harissa, cous cous and veg

MOJO PORK TENDERLOIN Carrot and chayote salad with chipotle vinaigrette, mash

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST With mushroom ravioli, light lemon cream sauce with chevre

For Dessert:

HONEY LAVENDER BRULEE with fresh berries

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch: $16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

08-27-corvina

SALADE NICOISE Classic composed salad on leaf lettuce with olives, green beans, tomato, hardboiled egg and French dressing

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree: 

ALMOND CRUSTED CORVINA Roasted red pepper harissa, cous cous and veg

MOJO PORK TENDERLOIN Carrot and chayote salad with chipotle vinaigrette, mash

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST Served over angel hair pasta with roasted Roma tomato sauce

  

Alll of the above will pair so nicely with our wine of the week, check it out for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle.

Click here to make a reservation, or call us at 941.366.8111. And follow us on Facebook for more amazingly-delicious looking photos and news.

 

We're back with this week's prix fixe Summer in the City menus (Aug. 20-Aug. 25) — the watermelon and feta salad is a perfect cooling August dish, or try the flounder meunier, inspired by one of our favorite regulars, Lynn Robbins:

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner: $32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

watermelon-salad

WATERMELON & FETA SALAD With red onion, grape tomatoes, and arugula; white balsamic vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:

LYNN ROBBINS’ FLOUNDER MEUNIER Lemon caper beurre blanc, fresh veggies

MANDALAY DUCK BREAST Star anise dusted, pan roasted, served with Jasmine rice and Kaffir lime coconut cream

MUSHROOM RAVIOLI & SKIRT STEAK Tossed in a light demi-glace and Marsala wine sauce

For Dessert:

 WHITE CHOCOLATE PANNA COTTA With pomegranate coulis

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch: $16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

WATERMELON & FETA SALAD With red onion, grape tomatoes, and arugula; white balsamic vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef 

Choice of Entree: 

TURKEY PASTRAMI On marble rye with Swiss cheese, grain mustard plus coleslaw and waffle chips

LYNN ROBBINS’ FLOUNDER MEUNIER Lemon caper beurre blanc, fresh veggies

MUSHROOM RAVIOLI & SKIRT STEAK Tossed in a light demi-glace and Marsala wine sauce

  

Check out our wine of the week for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle all summer as well as our regular dinner and lunch menus — a house-made ice cream is just what the doctor ordered to finish things off if you ask us! 

Click here to make a reservation, or call us at 941.366.8111. And follow us on Facebook for specials and sneak peeks inside the restaurant.

 

Since we started the Bijou Café in 1986, we have been great friends with our neighbors Florida Studio Theatre. We obviously have a symbiotic relationship as many people love to have dinner at the Bijou and then walk across the street to attend a theater performance.

On a more personal note, we really got to know the folks who run the theater when our little boy Jeffrey (now 26!) started going to summer camp for kids at FST. He loved it and of course we loved seeing him and the other kids perform.

FS-construction

Now in its 38th year, Florida Studio Theatre is just about to complete the largest expansion in its history to meet growing needs.

They have renovated the 6,000 square foot Gompertz Theatre and constructed an 18,000 square foot addition with two new theater spaces. It has been a $6 million project and it will allow for growth of the theater, the art, and the audience. Pictured at right is the nearly-complete new theatre! 

New features include:

  • Fully renovated Gompertz theatre auditorium featuring an increase in seating capacity to 230, increased accessible seating for handicapped patrons, larger stage space and wing space
  • Expanded interior lobby space
  • New large restrooms
  • A full service café and bar
  • Covered veranda seating and street-level seating
  • A New Cabaret Theatre, seating 130 people on two levels
  • A New Lab Theatre, seating 100 people
  • A New Actors' Loft featuring new dressing rooms, restrooms, green room, and additional facilities

Little old neglected First Street has really been kicked up a notch with this beautiful new addition!

Click here to see more about the work on the new project.

Ticket revenue only covers about 65% of the operating costs associated with their programming. Like all non-profit institutions, they rely on the generous contributions of loyal patrons and corporations to bridge the gap. Donors are a critical part of FST's artistic team, ensuring that they can continue to make Sarasota a great place to raise children, and an even better place to raise adults.

So our very best wishes go out to Richard, Rebecca, Kate, Beth, Pam and the entire FST family on their amazing new achievement.

They would appreciate any help you could provide. For more information on supporting The New Gompertz Theatre campaign, please contact Jon Donk, Development Manager, at (941) 366-9017 x326 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Hot town, Summer in the City! Inspired by another scortching week, here's our latest prix fixe menu (Aug. 13-Aug. 18) — try two courses at lunch for $16.95 or three at dinner for $32.95 and enjoy the tasty side of "Summer in the City."

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner: $32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

Food _shots_81412_007SALADE MAISON Bibb and radicchio, crisp prosciutto, polenta croutons, creole vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:

SHRIMP & MUSSELS Over pappardelle with housemade pancetta, white clam sauce

SALMON PAILLARD Loch Duart salmon sautéed in olive oil and garlic, roasted Mediterranean vegetables, spinach, finished with lemon and butter

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST Free range chicken, smoky tomato butter sauce, zucchini planks, lemon herb spaetzle (pictured at right)

For Dessert:

 CHOCOLATE POTS DE CRÈME With candied and brittled nuts, coffee cloud

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch: $16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

SALADE MAISON Bibb and radicchio, crisp prosciutto, polenta croutons, creole vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree: 

NEUSKE’S BACON BLT Semolina toast, arugula, avocado, Tasti-Lee tomato, mayo

BILL SABA’S LOCH DUART SALMON Loch Duart salmon sautéed in olive oil and garlic and served with roasted Mediterranean vegetables and sautéed spinach, finished with lemon and butter

GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST Free range chicken, smoky tomato butter sauce, zucchini planks, lemon herb spaetzle

  

Also: we're offering a different wine of the week for just $6 per glass and $24 per bottle all summer as well as our regular dinner and lunch menus — including our famous Pommes Gratin Dauphinois.

Click here to make a reservation, or call us at 941.366.8111. And follow us on Facebook for specials and sneak peeks inside the restaurant.

 

Hello Bijou friends and followers! Here's our new prix-fixe "Summer in the City" for this week (Aug. 6-Aug. 11)! 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Dinner: $32.95 per person

Choice of Starter:

pear-saladGRILLED PEAR & WATERCRESS Salad with arugula, walnuts, blue cheese, onion and lemon/shallot vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree:

BRAISED PORK SHANK With fresh pea risotto and wild mushroom sauce

HANRAHAN’S CHICKEN Fresh herb and mustard crusted boneless breast served with orzo primavera, tomato and compound butter

ASIAN-INSPIRED SALMON Balsamic glazed filet of salmon with glass noodles, ginger, garlic and scallion sauce

For Dessert:

PEACH & RHUBARB CRISP With vanilla bean ice cream

 

SUMMER IN THE CITY Lunch: $16.95 per person

Choice of Starter: 

shrimp-po-boy

GRILLED PEAR & WATERCRESS Salad with arugula, walnuts, blue cheese, onion and lemon/shallot vinaigrette

SOUP DU JOUR Hot and chilled specialties of the Chef

Choice of Entree: 

BRAISED PORK SHANK With fresh pea risotto and wild mushroom sauce

HANRAHAN’S CHICKEN Fresh herb and mustard crusted boneless breast served with orzo primavera, tomato and compound butter 

ROCK SHRIMP PO’ BOY N’awlins style sandwich with Creole remoulade and chopped slaw

  

Come in and enjoy the "Summer in the City" dinner or lunch menu alongside our wine of the week for just $6 per glass, $24 per bottle. Of course our full dinner and lunch menus, including the amazing Bijou Pepper Steak, are available, too.

Click here to make a reservation, or call us at 941.366.8111. And follow us on Facebook for specials and sneak peeks inside the restaurant.

 



Lunch
Monday-Friday 11:30AM-2PM
Dinner
Monday-Saturday from 5PM
Bijou Cafe © 2017 Copyright
1287 First Street
Sarasota FL 34236
 
941.366.8111
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