Bijou Cafe

4.6
icon/ic_reviewCreated with Sketch.
1306 Reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$31 to $50
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Continental

Top Tags:

Pre/post Theatre
The Bijou Café, located in the heart of Sarasota’s prestigious Theatre & Arts District since 1986, is one of Florida’s best known restaurants. Chef-owner, Jean-Pierre Knaggs and wife Shay, welcome guests with genuine hospitality and unparalleled service. Chef Knaggs, renowned for his sophisticated innovative cuisine, brings a passion for cooking to breath-taking new heights!
For more casual fare The Bijou Cafe offers a lighter Bar Bites Menu in the “Gossips Lounge”, or outside on the Patio, the place to be for seasonal al fresco dining. An award winning, value based wine list and a dazzling collection of imaginative cocktails fulfill even the most ardent imbiber’s desires!
What 1306 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
Sort by
Filters
AK
AnnK
Toronto
3 reviews
Dined on March 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is a lovely dining experience. Sarasota has many good restaurants but in my opinion this is the best. Wonderful cuisine, thoughtfully presented, graciously presented in a charming setting. We’ll return - and bring friends!

SR
vipSRQgirl
Tampa
69 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our meal was delicious and the service excellent. This restaurant is our favorite in Sarasota for the drinks, food and atmosphere. Every entree is prepared perfectly. We had the steaks last night with the dauphinois potatoes - absolutely have to have these! When in Sarasota this place is a must!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Tampa
3 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely luncheon with 3 ladies who enjoyed getting together after days of separation in a beautiful setting, delicious food, and great service. Always a special dining experience!

f
vipflarobyn
Tampa
25 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Bijou Cafe is one of our favorite places. Always a good choice for dinner with friends or a special occasion. Food is outstanding as is the service.

LB
vipLBKer
Tampa
38 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Had the Tuna Poke bowl. Delicious! I never had a bad meal, why’re it is lunch or dinner.

M
Monti
1 review
Dined on March 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were greeted with a smile and shown to a secluded and pleasant location off the main dining area at 5:15 pm. Graciela provided a comfortable pace in serving our cocktails, salad, main course and celebratory desserts all in time for our party of four to make our theater appointment at 7 pm. Two entries of Maple Leaf roast duckling were delicious and presented with an orange sauce. Two other entries were the very adequate appetizer portions of shrimp Piri Piri and Bijou crab cake for the ladies. We highly recommend Bijou Cafe and enjoy dining there as often as we can.

RG
RobinG
1 review
Dined on March 11, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience3

Overall - good but not great. The caesar salad was not memorable in any way; I've had better caesar salads and Ruby Tuesday. Entree's were very good. Dessert was average. Nothing really outstanding though. The cocktails were very good, however.

SW
vipShirleyW
Tampa
9 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2020
Overall2food4service4ambience2

A complete disappointment. We made a reservation for our 41st anniversary at BC so we could have a quiet fine dining experience. I even noted "anniversary" on the reservation. We were seated in the bar with the Happy Hour crowd wearing shirts and tee shirts. We had dressed up for a nice evening out and watched as diners wearing jeans and tee shirts were seated in the dining room. We decided to just have an entree and get out of there so we didn't order dessert and asked for our bill. When they cleared they brought to our table a huge old candelabra with candles and an empty dessert plate with "Happy Anniversary" on it. I guess they knew all along it was our anniversary and didn't care where they sat us. I spoke with the receptionist on the way out and she didn't seem to care. Never again. There are fine dining restaurants in the city where you can actually have an anniversary worthy night out.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 12, 2020

We are so sorry to have disappointed you on your special day. We have many people who celebrate anniversaries and birthdays with us and we try very hard to make it special for them. We would have been happy to move you to another room if you had said something to the host. Our bar room is actually our most popular room so it is difficult for us to know when a guest doesn't want to sit there. Please contact me personally so I can send you a token of our sincere apologies. jp@bijoucafe.net

Report
J
Jerry
Salt Lake City
16 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome service! Awesome service and as you would expect an awesome price *but worth the value!!”

p
vippattycake
New York Area
50 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always good. Very consistent.

o
otpilot
Tampa
5 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was a VERY expensive dinner but we knew that going in. Absolutely delicious. Impeccable service. We had filet mignon and lamb. The dessert trio was also wonderful, especially the creme brûlée.

JB
JohnB
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience4

Bijou has been very good generally. On the last visit I specifically and emphatically indicated that I wanted the Tuna cooked medium (pink). It arrived barely cooked and cool. I did not send it back as we were on a theater time frame hurry. However, chefs should be reminded that, what I suspect is a majority, do like to have their fish and meat at least reasonably cooked. A word to the unwise chef, cook the food the way it was requested in spite of your "elitist" training which does not reflect the world of taste. We will hesitate to return to Bijou in the future as there are many good restaurants in Sarasota. On a positive note, the waiter was terrific.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thanks for taking the time to review the Bijou Cafe JohnB. We appreciate all constructive criticism although we take offense at being called elitist. We go to great lengths to accommodate our guests and occasionally we don't get it right on the first try. Being in business for 34 years in this town suggests we are doing something correctly. There is nothing supercilious, arrogant or pretentious about me, my chef or any of my staff.

Report
e
vipej55
New England
12 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Phenomenal food! Went there with my best friend and our spouses and the food and the surroundings were excellent! I highly recommend Bijou Cafe!!

BC
BlairC
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

A trip to the opera would not be complete without a pre meal at the Bijou. Excellent as always.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thanks Blair, you are so correct. Dinner at the Bijou and then a night at the Opera is a Sarasota tradition!

Report
JC
JoanC
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

The service was excellent - the food and wine was very good - the desert was somewhat lacking - but it is a very sweet place

L
Lovethisplace
Chicago
11 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Great patio- would recommend over sitting inside!

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thanks, we love sitting outside too when the weather cooperates!

Report
L
Lewrose2
Naples
14 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great atmosphere, excellent location, great food.
Though a little pricey, well worth it. Went for lunch and had the avocado crab salad. Excellent. Real lump crab and lots of it. I could have done without the cheese, but that’s a matter of taste. My sister liked that addition.
Located right in the middle of the art district. Free valet parking, so that’s not an issue.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thanks Lewrose2 for the excellent review. We look forward to seeing you again soon!

Report
R
vipRiddler
Pittsburgh
16 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food is excellent. Very romantic and great to have outdoor seating option.excellent pre show sinner

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thanks Riddler, we also love the al fresco dining when weather permits!

Report
BC
vipBandC
Tampa
34 reviews
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience5

3 of 4 meals were VG. The Lamb Chops were overcooked and the sauce was very bland.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thank you for the review BandC. Did you ask your server to replace the chops? We are always ready to correct any mistake we might have inadvertently made.

Report
F
vipFussy
Naples
53 reviews
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Bijou Cafe never disappoints. The food and service are always consistently superb. It is refreshing to eat a restaurant where the waitstaff is professionally trained. Richard, who has been working at Bijou for a very long time, was assigned to our table and this was very fortunate. It's always a pleasure!

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Thank you very much, we appreciate such kind words!

Report
f
vipflutegirl4
New York Area
18 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Lovely restaurant with good food. Pleasant atmosphere that is conversation-friendly. Service attentive. We would go back.

s
vipshoewoman
Pittsburgh
17 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Great place to meet up with friends for lunch or dinner!

Food was very tasty and healthy (quinoa bowl). Where my friends enjoyed the trio soup, tagliatelle and curry chicken sliders.

Definitely will be back!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 26, 2020
Overall1food2service4ambience1

We were given a table next to a large table with 10 very loud people ( believe it was a business group) We asked to be moved but were not accommodated. I had made this reservation on February 2nd and we were treated as if we were expecting too much. We will not be returning.

Bijou Cafe
Responded on March 11, 2020

Sorry to disappoint you, during the busy Opera season we simply do not have any tables that are not full making it impossible to move people to a quiet area.

Report
L
Luv2dine
Miami
16 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place for a special dinner. The choices are varied and plentiful and the portions are large. Cocktails are especially well done! I liked the cozy bar area and outdoor spaces as well. Reservations in high season is a MUST!

AW
vipArtieW
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

seated promptly
great food
wonderful service
this was our second meal there on our 3 week vaction

JR
vipJanetR
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

We had wonderful service! Made the food even better!!

FK
FK000
Minneapolis
4 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2020
Overall3food3service1ambience2

Ok food, subpar service. Disappointed with the food.

k
kitterymike
New England
23 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience3

When did the Bijou become ordinary?
Food was not up to par. Service was disappointing and dining room was crowded and noisy.

L
Lovethisplace
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience2

Food average- expensive for what was served. Very old crowd-

HM
vipHankM
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

Disappointed. I chose the crab cakes as they are supposed to be one of the signature dishes. They came out Luke warm, on a Luke warm sauce. Crab cakes were rather dull in flavor too. An interesting salad went with them. I left one on my plate. Couldn’t eat anymore. Yuck

DS
DanielS
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very elegant restaurant, great service, great food. The sauces used on vegetables were outstanding. I had the grouper special, and it was a very generous serving of grouper. The best thing were the crab cakes. I find many places in Florida serve crab cakes that are primarily filler. Not here. The crab cakes had a abundant amount of crab meat chunks. Reminded me of the crab cakes found in great seafood places by the Chesapeake Bay.

VM
vipValMccaff
New England
21 reviews
Dined on February 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Superb pre Opera meal!

Report
IK
IlanaK
Tallahassee
2 reviews
Dined on February 17, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

The chicken was over cooked and dry. The fish was just fair. The lamb cooped where outstanding.

GH
GailH
Cleveland
4 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience4

It was nice, not outstanding but nice.

PE
PattyE
Detroit
2 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Lovely look but predictable menu with nothing that stands out.

D
vipDaul
Tampa
15 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always for our Anniversary. 18 years going to Bijou and counting. We also go with friends and family. Great food and service.

N
Neil
Tampa
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Really nice atmosphere, we were sat in the front of the restaurant near a bar and a view of downtown streets. Food was really good and well portioned. I got the lamb shank and my wife got the surf and turf special, both had a lot of meat and were delicious.

EF
vipEdFK
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a great choice for a classic dining experience.

SS
vipSeanS
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Valentines

Report
JP
JanP
Naples
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always excellent! Have a hard time choosing what to order. It’s all so good!

Tweets by Bijou Cafe