Bistro Vivant

Bistro Vivant

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.bistrovivant.com/
  • Phone: 703-356-1700
  • Hours of Operation:
    Bistro Vivant is open for Lunch, Dinner and Weekend Brunch!

    Hours of Operation:
    Brunch: Saturday & Sunday 11:30am - 4:00pm;
    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 4:00pm;
    Dinner: Monday - Thursday 4:00pm - 10:00pm;
    Friday and Saturday 4:00pm - 10:30pm;
    Sunday 4:00pm - 9:30pm
    HAPPY HOUR: EVERYDAY 4:00pm - 6:30pm
    (available at the bar only)
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: French
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Smoking Area, Smoking Area (patio only), Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: Please contact our General Manager, Shannon Paretzky, for more information.
  • Special Events: Please contact our General Manager, Shannon Paretzky, for more information.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Rt 123 Dolley Madison Blvd
  • Public Transit: Metro Bus stop one block away, on corner of Old Dominion Dr and Chain Bridge Rd.
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Plenty of free parking in parking lot.
A word from Bistro Vivant
A contemporary French Bistro in the heart of McLean. We are open ALL DAY, EVERY DAY... so join us for a late Lunch, early Dinner or any Holiday.
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Bistro Vivant reviews from OpenTable diners
66 reviews since June 24, 2014
Overall Rating3.7
  • Food3.9
    Service3.7
  • Ambiance3.6
    Noise LevelModerate
88% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (38)fit for foodies (26)great for lunch (17)notable wine list (13)special occasion (11)great for outdoor dining (8)great for brunch (3)romantic (3)good for groups (2)hot spot (1)late-night find (1)kid-friendly (1)Show More
  • An excellent bistro with an
    DuckSoup11VIP
    Dined on 9/14/2012
    An excellent bistro with an interesting menu that changes with the seasons (and isn't reduced to just sandwiches and salads at lunchtime). The burger is excellent (decide yourself if it's worth the price!); anything with the duck confit; and a great dessert of morello cherries. We've visited several times and this is a great addition to the neighborhood. Service is uneven, some servers seeming better trained than others. Great wine list. The room is noisy if the place is busy.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • My croque monsieur sandwich
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 9/13/2012
    My croque monsieur sandwich was good but not great like that at Paul. The Bistro Vivant version was mostly thinly sliced deli-style ham on a nice-tasting American-style bread (thickly sliced), with dijon mustard, and very little cheese and bechamel (I couldn't really taste them). Expensive for what it was.The accompanying greens were good, with a light, French-style vinaigrette. The fruit tart was cold and a little soupy and wasn't French-tasting. The crust wasn't flaky enough. The ambience was comfortable, and our waiter was perfect--quick, professional, and pleasant. I am half French and have spent much time in France, so I have certain expectations of a restaurant billed as French. These were French menu items done American-style.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • We were very pleased with
    Virginians
    Dined on 9/12/2012
    We were very pleased with the menu selection and the quality of the food served.All four of us were happy and delighted with our meals. We welcome Bistro Vivant to McLean. It is a little on the pricey side for lunch. The service was quire adequate but it is always nice to have those who serve you be warm, friendly, with a sense of humor, and appreciative of our business--which we did not especially notice with the gentleman serving us our lunch.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • food was delicious; however
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 9/11/2012
    food was delicious; however service was very slow ... they seemed short staffed on the tuesday evening. no bartender which was odd when there was a bar. Delayed the waiter staff in that they were handling their own drink orders. no hostess either. maybe an unsual night.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just OK!
    scjordiVIP
    Dined on 9/9/2012
    Started off good, nice ambiance, really good martini's for $12 per drink. Bartender was also the waiter.....should stay behind the bar! My beet appetizer was great, husbands heirloom tomatoes soup tasted like a standard gazpacho. My fricasse of veal with Fava beans was just ok. For $25 it should have had more than a few beans for an entree, no starch on the plate.......just gray looking chunks of veal and a few beans.....looked very unappetizing. We had to ask for bread. The frites with my husbands steak was good but the steak was tough. Our peach desert cake was good. I really wanted to like this place since it has a nice ambiance and is close to home. But we will not go out of our way to go back anytime soon.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The skirt steak and salad
    EthnicFoodLover
    Dined on 9/9/2012
    The skirt steak and salad (I swapped out the frites, which are really good, but I am trying to avoid them) was delicious. My one friend and I really liked the mustard sauce. Coffee and the creme brulee dessert with raspberry puree was also very nice. The coffee was good. My other friends did not like the selection or their entrees that well. I would return for the steak again. Service was a bit slow considering it was quiet that afternoon and most people sat outside. The bistro is very attractive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Nice neighborhood restaurant
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 9/8/2012
    Nice neighborhood restaurant that is sorely needed in McLean
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Went 9/8/12. Had the Arctic
    JJFAVIP
    Dined on 9/8/2012
    Went 9/8/12. Had the Arctic char and the scallops. Both were truly excellent. Also had the snails with garlic butter, baby potatoes and mushrooms (prefer mine in the shell, but these were good). Wine (sauv. blanc) was also very good. Service was good (server had several tables to attend to). The ambience was a bit on the spartan side, but OK. Prices are moderate. Would recommend and go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The tables are very close
    OmarVIP
    Dined on 9/8/2012
    The tables are very close together, when directed to a table we did not get a polite reception, even though we had a reservation.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • I've had lovely lunches here
    2TryaNew
    Dined on 9/7/2012
    I've had lovely lunches here and had exceptional evening meals, as well. It's a bit noisy and the last time we went for dinner the waiter couldn't have messed up our meals more if he'd tried. The gracious owner was extremely apologetic and went out of his way to try and fix things. We'll definitely go back and give them another chance.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Food and service were very,
    mikeVIP
    Dined on 9/3/2012
    Food and service were very, very good. In my opinion, a recent food critic's review was completely wrong! We'll definitely go back for another wonderful meal.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • One of our favorites.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 9/1/2012
    First rate ... wonderful food, great ingredients, wonderful service. We love it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great addition to McLean
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 8/31/2012
    Had a terrific dinner Friday evening. We dined early so got a reservation the day before. By the time we left at 7:30, the place was packed and the hostess was offering seats at the bar. The mussels were plump and prepared in a yummy, creamy sauce that needed extra bread for dipping. The pork chop was juicy and moist (hard to do) and served with a mustard sauce. I don't care for scallops but the consensus was that they were amazing--plump and seared and sauced perfectly. The bouillabaisse was fine but overshadowed but the other food. The veal special was a hit--the attentive waiter had it sliced extra thin to accommodate one of our elderly diners. By the way,order the frites! The are traditional ones, so good you'll happily blow your diet.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • escargot in lemon???
    nevertoreturnVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2012
    aug 19 sunday. we ordered escargot, expecting snails w/garlic and sauce. an unpleasant surprise...escargot baked in lemon. what is french about that????? service was terrible at 530p. maybe the entire staff hadnt come yet. well......dont open until 6p if you there isnt a full complement of staff!!! lamb was great, desserts outstanding, steak yummy. needs improvement on the first items.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Was there for dinner for the
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 8/14/2012
    Was there for dinner for the first time. Food was great!! Wine list was nice, especially because the restaurant offers the same bottle/by the glass wines in a 1/2 carafe and full carafe. While the outside looks onto a parking lot, there is little outdoor dining available in McLean and they have enclosed the area and gave it a "bistro" feel. Great addition to the neighborhood!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Servers had no personality--very
    nonnaVIP
    Dined on 8/13/2012
    Servers had no personality--very flat. No welcome, just ready to take order very soon after sitting down, no expression.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • not as good as the first time
    bikerbob54VIP
    Dined on 8/3/2012
    Some of the food here is quite good although we had the special bouillabaisse this time which had very little flavor. It was predominantly filled with a mediocre white fish. Service was particularly poor as well.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • 1910 redux..no personality or charm
    ReynoldsVIP
    Dined on 8/1/2012
    Had the Hanger Steak and Fries...excellent! Wonderful seasoning!! The room is terrible. Like its predecessor, it is like eating in a old cafeteria. Just way too sterile and cold. Our wait person was also cold as a fish...no personality at all. Service was slow because they were busy...which is good.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not enough tables allocated
    OpenTable Diner Since 2003VIP
    Dined on 8/1/2012
    Not enough tables allocated for reservations through Open aTable.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Attentive waiter and very
    foodiehoo
    Dined on 7/29/2012
    Attentive waiter and very good food made this a great choice for a Sunday night dinner. Most of our food choices were excellent - the seafood risotto was a bit of a miss (bland). But otherwise we loved our meal. One of our party was celebrating a birthday and they brought us each a glass of champagne - a very nice touch!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food was average and service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 7/28/2012
    Food was average and service was indifferent. So loud you can't hear your table companions.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good food--good time.
    CarolleemVIP
    Dined on 7/28/2012
    This was our first time here and it will certainly not be our last. The restaurant is bright and airy and not too big. The staff is friendly and accommodating. And the food is delicious without being overpriced. The wine selection was also good and not too pricy. We had the house wine and liked it very much. we look forward to another meal there.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We've been several times now,
    outnaboutVIP
    Dined on 7/28/2012
    We've been several times now, and your service seems to depend on who you get. The young gal we've gotten in the past is attentive and knowledgeable; the guy we had last weekend was never around, didn't really know what was going on at every table, and required chasing. Food this time was very different than last time. Heirloom salad was great, but the stew was inedible. Was told "we have a lot of new people come through the kitchen, I guess the guy tonight isn't as good at that as the last time you were here". Huh? There is tremendous potential here, but they need to get the kinks out. More consistency and higher standards in the kitchen, and either more waitstaff, or ones that are more aware of their surroundings and more attenti
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great potential, but food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 7/27/2012
    Great potential, but food suffers from far to much salt!!!!!! The overall experience should have been 5 star however the food suffered from seasoning.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Slow kitchen - ran out of
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/25/2012
    Slow kitchen - ran out of many items (even though we were eating at 7:30) and server came back long after the order was made to tell us they were out of mussels, out of a fish special and "not enough bread was ordered", so there was none to be had. The waitress was pleasant and the wine list good. The beet salad was above average but overall there were too many problems with the management of the restaurant to recommend it.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great meal, second time there!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 7/25/2012
    Great meal, second time there! Portions can be large, but quality of the food is very good and very French. Quite a find for Northern Virginia where so many restaurants come and go. Hope this one lasts!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice spot but still finding
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 7/23/2012
    Nice spot but still finding it's way. My skate wing was over fried, had no sauce and the accompanying vege of tomatoes and fennel was unremarkable. The salads were nice as were the mussels and zuccini blossoms. Wine selection nice but seemed expensive. I mentioned a birthday to the maitre di but nothing was forthcoming, we left with no acknowledgment. Service.a little slow but competent except they kept trying to clear plates that were unfinished and while others were still eating.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great addition to McLean restaurant
    GrigioVIP
    Dined on 7/21/2012
    Great addition to McLean restaurants. Wonderful vichyssoise, terrific mussels, interesting wines by the glass. We definitely will be back, again and again.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food was excellent. Nice
    DukelVIP
    Dined on 7/21/2012
    Food was excellent. Nice option in McLean. A tad noisy inside due to hard floors. Could use a little more of a French bistro feel through decorating.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • My wife and I went for my
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/17/2012
    My wife and I went for my birthday. We had been there before and had enjoyed it very much. Again, it was a great experience for both the food and service. I had the venison special which was excellent and my wife had the sea trout. We had a wonderful Pinot Noir which went perfectly with both the fish and the meat. Bistro Vivant is a true French Bistro with all the wonderful foods that encompasses plus many others that would satisfy the palate of the more traditional diner. It is a great addition for McLean and we will be going back again with friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best over all in all catagories.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/16/2012
    Best over all in all catagories. Delisious foods and loved the Colonel dessert. UM UM GOOD
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Neighborhood Gem
    Ono2ReviewVIP
    Dined on 7/14/2012
    Great 'Neighborhood Gem'- a true Bistro experience - wonderful food. Thank you!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • My husband I went for lunch
    DebraVIP
    Dined on 7/13/2012
    My husband I went for lunch an both had the sea bass, which was pan fried. Very good! A limited lunch menu, but never-the-less, very nice experience. We plan on returning for dinner one evening.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Merveilleuse Nouvel Endroit
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 7/8/2012
    First visit, and very favorably impressed. Service was a bit slow, but then it's modeled after a French Bistro, so by that standard it's about right. Their offerings are very, very much like a typical small bistro, with decent carafe wines, bistro dishes and appetizers (the olives were especially good and brought back memories of France). A small but clear deference to American dining was serving the salad before the entree rather than after, but I simply put mine aside until I was ready for it. Only non-positive note was the a desert of poached peaches, which were too sweet and had a stringy texture. We will absolutely be back, and look forward to it!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Second time at this great
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 7/7/2012
    Second time at this great new McLean resturant and it keeps getting better. Suggest strating with the mussels and advancing to the strip stake, sirloin, or the sea bass.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Brand new restaurant in an
    ThePunditVIP
    Dined on 7/4/2012
    Brand new restaurant in an area that needs all the help it can get. Interesting menu, we loved the mussels as well as the blanquette de veau. Everyone is trying to make your visit a pleasurable experience!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • We have been residents of
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 7/3/2012
    We have been residents of McLean, Va. since 1981. The lack of good restaurants in this town has been a consistent disappointment. So we were delighted to have enjoyed a very excellent meal at Bistro Vivant on July 4th. Earlier in the week my friend and I had an equally stellar lunch. I hope McLean supports this new neighborhood gem.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • What a great surprise! Had
    OpenTable Diner Since 2001VIP
    Dined on 6/29/2012
    What a great surprise! Had a wonderful meal here - it's a true bistro scene - chalk board menu, open, loud, but with delicious food and a nice wine list that allows you to get a large selection of wines by the glass, half-carafe, full carafe, or bottle. Food, particularly the veal flank steak special, was very nicely prepared and portions were extremely generous. Nice service as well - you'd never know it was a new restaurant. We look forward to returning soon!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Would recommend this place
    good4uVIP
    Dined on 6/24/2012
    Would recommend this place if you are not a "foodie." It is certainly OK - nothing bad - but not very good. There were a few things on the menu that they did not have (and I wanted). They didn't run out - they just never had them. We had great service, perhaps because there were only three tables being used.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Having read all the positive
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 6/15/2012
    Having read all the positive reviews here, we decided to try Bistro Vivant. To our greatest disappointment, the food was simply awful - my fish entree was almost inedible with a heavy sauce to mask lack of flavor and my husband's beef entree was overcooked. Appetizers were slighly better than entrees, but mediocre at best.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate