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About Bistro Cacao

Where Romance meets Flavor… At Bistro Cacao, chef-owner Kemal Deger brings nearly 25 years of culinary expertise to your table. In Bistro Cacao’s historic location we now invite you to enjoy our new concept of modern bistro-style French cuisine in a romantically charming and comfortable setting blending old France with modern creative touches.

320 Massachusetts Avenue, NE
Washington, DC 20002
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
French, European

Hours of Operation:
Brunch: Saturday 11 am - 3 pm, Sunday: 10:00am - 3:00pm;
Lunch: Monday 11:30 am - 2 pm, Tuesday - Friday: 11:30am - 3:00pm;
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm, Sunday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm

Cross Street:
3rd and 4th NE

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(202) 546-4737

Website:
http://www.bistrocacao.com/

Catering:
Yes we do Cater

Public Transit:
Union Station red line three blocks away

Executive Chef:
Kemal Deger

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cafe, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Outdoor Smoking Area, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Specials

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Details
Daily 5:00PM - 5:45PM

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Private Dining

All type of private events welcome, Breakfast, Lunch, Brunch, Dinner, Cocktail etc. Green Room, up to 26 people Red Room, up to 40 people Rouge Room, up to 16 people Cacao Wine Bar, up to 50 people cocktail, receptions, happy hours etc. Private outdoor available.

Bistro Cacao Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.6

ambience

4.7

value

4.4

Noise

Quiet

95% would recommend it to a friend

Romantic (95)
Good for a Date (91)
Cozy (90)
See All
Special Occasion (82)
Good for Anniversaries (76)
Quiet Conversation (67)
Neighborhood Gem (66)
Authentic (49)
Fit for Foodies (45)
Good for Birthdays (41)
Notable Wine List (40)
Creative Cuisine (29)
Worth the Drive (25)
Great for Brunch (22)
Business Meals (21)
Pre/post Theatre (20)
Casual (19)
Tasting Menu (18)
Great for Outdoor Dining (16)
Good for Groups (15)
Great for Lunch (15)
Sunday Lunch (15)
Fun (14)
Comfort Food (12)
Healthy (11)
Handcrafted Cocktails (9)
Late-night Find (9)
Afternoon Tea (7)
Good Vegetarian Options (6)
Afternoon Coffee (5)
Seasonal (5)
Hot Spot (4)
Bar Seating (3)
Local Ingredients (3)
Paleo Friendly (3)
People Watching (3)
Vegan (3)
Gluten Free Options (2)
Kid-friendly (1)
Disabled Access (1)
Great Beer (1)
Happy Hour (1)
Scenic View (1)
Tapas (1)
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2440 reviews
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·Dined 3 days ago

The ambience was romantic and charming. The food had beautiful presentation and pleasing textures. Unfortunately I was hit with a cold and stuffed up nose the day of our reservations and couldn't taste anything. I'm very bummed out about that timing as the venison was tender and cooked to perfection and this was my first time trying Escargot and Foie Gras

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food4
ambience5
service3
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 4 days ago

This was not our first visit nor will it be our last. We love the ambiance of the restaurant as well as the food. The Valentines Day special touches they provided such as rose for my wife upon entrance and gift bag upon leaving were nice.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Cozy, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 4 days ago

The ambiance struck me while the service and food was impeccable

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 5 days ago

Washington restaurants are normally noisy, but the owners of Bistro Cacao believe that diners should be able to hear each other in a relaxed setting. The French music adds to the atmosphere but is never too loud. The booths are particularly private and romantic. On chilly evenings, the fire in the fireplace adds to the cozy, home-like atmosphere. And the food and wine are excellent. Menu items are not cheap, but they are not exorbitant either.
Bistro Cacao is my favorite restaurant on Capitol Hill and maybe in the city.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Afternoon Coffee, Pre/post Theatre, Afternoon Tea, Business Meals, Great for Brunch, Authentic, Seasonal, Late-night Find, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined 6 days ago

This was definitely one of the best dining experiences I've had in DC. Everything was excellent, but the service in particular was wonderful.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined 7 days ago

I come here with a friend for dinner. It was everything and more then I imagined. My friend who is of French orgin was expressed. Great Job Bistro Cacao

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Worth the Drive, Casual, Business Meals, Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Notable Wine List, Fun, Cozy, Good for Birthdays, Romantic, Tasting Menu, Authentic, Good for a Date, Hot Spot
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Definitely a good date spot. It is a bit dimly lit and small, but quiet and well decorated.

Tags: Cozy, Good for a Date, Authentic, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Everything started off very well. The decor is outstanding, pretty, cosy, romantic. They play music of the 20s and 30s, mostly, Edith Piaf, etc.

Trouble started when I undid the clasp on the curtain in our booth, which caused it to hang straight down. I was playing with the belt and the button came undone, so I just draped the belt on my chair back without touching the curtain itself. I let the server know. He, a man with a mole on his face, Damian?, gave me a good talking to for ruining the ambiance for the other guests, and that I could have caused the curtain to fall on my head, and it would have been very embarrassing. It's the kind of thing an annoyed parent might say to a child. My date and I just looked at each other and didn't know what to say. The spell was broken, and the place no longer seemed magical, though we tried quite hard. That is also when the waiter decided to no longer ham it up with stories about the wine varietals we were drinking (we went for a pairing menu). Our bill came up to about $300 for two people. We tipped $50 and I think it was too much.

Being a French national, actually, I know my French food. This was creative, presentation was good, but the flavor was so-so for most dishes. The rillete de canard was good. The steak was overdone for medium rare, and the sauce (a deglazed brown sauce) was far too heavy in flavor for both the steak and the shrimp (yes, shrimp) that was situated on the steak. The asparagus was not well done in my opinion, it was very simple, and therefore should have been cooked to retain just a touch of crispness on the inside. Sadly, it was floppy.

The dessert was okay. It wasn't bad, but it was definitely more cafe/bistro than fine dining. The profiterol should retain a tiny bit of crispness, and the chocolate on it was not particularly dark.

All in all, the service ruined the evening for us, and it was a very special date. We won't be going back.

Tags: Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Tasting Menu
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food3
ambience5
service1
value3

 
·Dined on February 11, 2018

Great overall experience.

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food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

Great food, excellent service and nice ambiance.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

This is a delightful French restaurant with great food and great atmosphere.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Great for Brunch, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

Amazing food and service. Very romantic place. Great environment for special occasion

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 8, 2018

What a wonderful dinner. Bistro Cacao has made good use of its space and visiting with friends is easy and feels intimate. The food is excellent. We started by sharing Coquille St. Jacques, I had the lamb and my friend had the duck YUM!!! And for dessert we share the trio of Crème Brulees. I will be back to have other offerings. Service was exceptional. I don't live in DC, however I recommend this as a neighborhood jewel.

Tags: Cozy, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 8, 2018

Beautiful restaurant that makes you feel like you're in an old world Parisian salon. Delicious food with an extensive menu.

Tags: Casual, Business Meals, Local Ingredients, Great for Outdoor Dining, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on February 6, 2018

Nice atmosphere, excellent food and professional staff!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 5, 2018

Our service was amazing as was the food! Highly recommend.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Cozy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Authentic, Notable Wine List, Business Meals, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 5, 2018

Good food, delightful ambiance, and good wine. We will be going back to feast again.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service3
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 4, 2018

A Wonderful Find Near the Folger

My friends and I often go to the Folger for a weekend matinee, but then we head off to another area for dinner. This time we decided to look at the Folger website and found Bistro Cacao on the list. Coming from New York, this bistro sounded perfect to me--the kind of intimate and charming French restaurant where grownups can have a conversation. Cacao turned out to be all this and more--cozy tables tucked away in nooks, an ambiance one could die for and--last but not least--terrific food. Everything about it was perfect. We will definitely go there again!

Tags: Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 4, 2018

What can one say about a typical Sunday brunch on a cold, rainy winter day? That the room was cozy and warm and not drafty? That when the background music was eventually turned on, it was not only pleasant, but unobtrusive as well? That our soups were delicious and hot? That my onion soup was one of the best I have had in a long time and was not too salty? Or that our perfectly cooked meals actually arrived on warmed plates and were served to the right person without our being asked who had ordered what? Or that our shared tarte aux pommes had perfectly flaky puff pastry? Well, I can say all of those things. We'll be back!

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food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 3, 2018

Great as always.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 2, 2018

Very romantic atmosphere. Server Natasha is sweet and very attentive. Host at front is great as well. Great place for a date.

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food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 1, 2018

Delicious French food in a quiet, cozy and eclectic atmosphere. Attentive wait staff but not overly so. This would be a great place to celebrate Valentine's Day if you haven't made plans yet, it is quiet, mature and romantic with rose petals on the table even when we were there. If you are tired of the hustle and bustle of modern restaurants and the noise that goes with that, consider Bistro Cacao, it is a gem on Mass Ave on the Senate side, the old 2 Quail. We only had salads and appetizers because we didn't have much time but what we had was presented well, tasted great, and was the right portion size. My only complaint, and it's minor, is some of the tables with the curtains next to them while providing intimacy can be a little difficult to navigate around getting into the chair. Highly recommend, look forward to returning when I have more time to sample!

Tags: Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
·Dined on February 1, 2018

Booked a table for my birthday, a stag party.
My son, Malik knows of my love for French cooking suggested this establishment (he and his wife like it a lot).
I am no snob, but can be hard to please when it's French food,as my first French meals were from the kitchen of the late great, Jean Louis Palladin, so I know great and good.
Our meals were just good to awful, my son-in-law and son were delighted with their choice of the trout and filet mignon dishes, they were good, my ribeye was underwhelming, the duck waddled back to uneaten the, lamb returned for more cooking, the best dish was the Bouillabaisse bountiful with fresh well-cooked seafood it - I wish I had ordered it.
The appetizers were tres triste (very sad) with firm, forgettable foie gras and gritty garlicky snails.
Would I try again? Yes if only for more of the Bouillabaisse.
It was a great 71st birthday party, they have a great liquor selection.

Tags: Cozy, Good for Birthdays
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food3
ambience3
service3
value2

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 28, 2018

I am a very picky international eater; however, the food was awesome. Our waiter was professional and pleasant or basically the entire staff was professional. Ambiance and decor remind me of the old French era but cool. Took my fiance for his birthday which he picked himself so I was not totally ready for it but he made a great selection. Even though, it was restaurant week in DC so the menu was already set but the selections were right on point. We are planning to go back to try out the regular menu and brunch. Thank you, Bistro Cacao!!!

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food5
ambience3
service5
value5

 
 (Baltimore)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Went for restaurant week. The choice for the three course menu had a nice variety. The service was great. We didn't feel rushed even though we spent a lot of time in the beginning chatting instead of looking at the menu (I know, a faux pas on our part). The dishes came in a timely manner.

The ambience was very romantic. Dimly lit for an intimate setting. We were seated by the window which felt like we were in our own secret part of the restaurant.

Appetizer: a refreshing beets and mozzarella salad, delightful pate, soup du jour was a savory sweet potato that wasn't too heavy.

Main entree: filet mignon was cooked well and very tender with a side of blue cheese polenta cake; lamb that was tender as well but on the bland side.

Dessert:. Trio creme brulee - the highlight of the dinner. The 3 flavors were original vanilla, mango and chocolate. It was portioned well to satisfy the sweet tooth.

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Baltimore)·Dined on January 28, 2018

The arrangement of this restaurant is intimidate, good for a date.
Food is okay but feels coldish when served. One recommendation is to have warm plate.
It's our first time there as family. My family enjoyed it.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Richmond)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Great food! Very nice atmosphere.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

I love this restaurant, the food is great. I will definitely go back and try more dishes.

Tags: Good for a Date, Comfort Food
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Savannah)·Dined on January 27, 2018

As always Bistro Cacao was exceptional in all areas. The service, the food, the ambiance. Even during restaurant week, same great quality. This is my favorite restaurant in DC!

Tags: Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Tasting Menu, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

The staff is great. The food is terrific. The atmosphere is wonderful. My wife and I come here on all special occasions.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

I loved the intimacy, quietness, ambiance of the setting and the restaurant. The food was great and it was an environment that foster a quiet fun evening. It is great for celebrations of any kind.
If you enjoy French food, you would love this restaurant. I will recommend friends to dinner at the restaurant and I will be back just to be in the environment for the moment. Life is a special occasion and dinning in at Bistro Cacao, definitely make the time a special occasion.

Tags: Cozy, Afternoon Coffee, Great for Lunch, Fun, Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

More than excellent
Waiter Damian exceptional
We went for restaurant week and my son’s birthday. Menu choices wonderful.
The pan seared duck so yummy.
Appetizers perfect. Beet salad, pate and goat cheese salad yummy
Desserts too it off and on my sons plate they wrote happy birthday with raspberry sauce.!!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, People Watching, Healthy, Cozy, Tapas
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

We tried Bistro Cacao on a Saturday evening before a show at the Kennedy Center. I saw it was well reviewed, and it was also Restaurant week so it seemed like a great idea. While not really knowing what to expect, we were really delighted to have "discovered" it. It has a very cool, kitchy French decor, and we were seated at a table for two with two large, comfortable chairs that you would find in someone's living room.
Because it was restaurant week, the only menu available was their Restaurant week menu, but it offered enough choices that we had no problems finding things to try. All the food was delicious, with my wife saying that the salmon she had was one of the best she could remember.
It's certainly worth a try! We plan to go back.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 27, 2018

I've been a long time lover of Bistro Cacao and look forward to dining with them at least once a year. I frequent during Restaurant Week as well and have recommended this restaurant to multiple friends. I was a little disappointed with the delayed service, it felt like we were waiting long periods of time after placing our orders and even waiting for our server to stop by our table to ensure everything was okay. My friend had ordered the steak and was missing a steak knife and ended up having to wait awhile until we could ask someone to bring a steak knife. Other than that, the experience was great and we really enjoyed our food as usual.

Tags: Special Occasion, Great for Outdoor Dining, Romantic, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

With this being my third time dining it was not one of the best. Actually very disappointing to say the least. John the sever was not to warming which typically sets the tone of a restaurant. This dining experience felt more so one to just come in, eat and leave in opposed to enjoying the ambience and serving.

Was very pleased that the restaurant recognized my mother on her birthday with a decorated plate to serve the desert we ordered.

Tags: Casual, Good for a Date
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food3
ambience5
service2
value3

vip
 (San Diego)·Dined on January 26, 2018

I live and work in DC while my wife lives in another city. Pretty typical for many of us political types. After having a wonderful Valentine dinner here once before, I was dying to come back. My wife was in for the weekend and we decided to have a ‘date night’ at Bistro Cacao. We arrived and were welcomed. Remembering my wife was from out of town was a nice touch. It speaks to the concern for customer service this restaurant has. BTW, Bistro Cacao does a fantastic job of keeping in touch with their customers. I appreciate the emails and special event notices very much.

My wife enjoyed her Bouillabaisse...simply loved it. It is her favorite dish and she said this was one of the best. I had the Filet. It was perfectly prepared, but there may have been a little confusion since there was a restaurant week menu and the regular one. I ordered off the regular menu, but it came out without the asparagus. A quick word with the waiter and the asparagus arrived within minutes.

Love the ambiance here...and the rose petals on the white tablecloth are a wonderful touch. We love you Bistro! Put this one on your list. You need to eat here, again and again.

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

Very good overall! Professional servers, great food and charming decor. Our table, located in a pass through area, was too close to the kitchen with no door. There was a steady flow of foot traffic at my back and the constant clanking of dishes in the kitchen. I would definitely return since the food, setting and service were positives. Although I would request a table in one of the other three dining rooms where I imagine a more enjoyable experience could be had.

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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 26, 2018

I was impressed with my overall experience, food was very good and service was great. I would recommend or suggest for a date spot.

Tags: Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

The service is really nice! Can be a good place for dating. I like the duck breast!

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

This restaurant will be added to my list of new favourite restaurants. It is in the neighbourhood and I don't know how it has escape my attention for so long. The service was wonderful, the food excellent, and the wine list selection alone is a reason to return. The price did reflect the food quality and quantity. The menu reflected diverse dietary and taste selections. There were curtains for privacy and open table seating. The pastry chief also engaged in a conversation on were to fine other excellent French pastry shops in the DC area reminisce of his native country France.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Romantic, Worth the Drive, Business Meals, Late-night Find, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Sunday Lunch, Special Occasion, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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