Chou Chou Bistro

4.2
2084 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary French
ChouChou (pronounced "shoo-shoo") strives to bring the spirit of Paris to Forest Hill. The casually elegant bistro showcases rustic Old World cooking with a modern French twist, paired with a thoughtful wine list. Chef Michaels invites you to experience the warm personalized service that is ChouChou. Bon Appetit!
What 2084 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.2
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Quiet
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 12 hours ago
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 3

It was a very busy night at Chou Chou. We arrived a few minutes early and were seated right away. Unfortunately, that was the only thing that went right all night. We were not even given menus u til we asked for them. Then, the owner came as very tersely asked who seated us. I informed him that we had a reservation, and then he stood down. I did not appreciate that attitude on his part. If anything, his staffed errored- not us. Then, at least three tables who were seated after us had their orders taken before they payed any attention to us. To make matters worse, we waited another 10 minutes - a total of 25 minutes after we were seated - to finally get some bread. Once we were finally served all courses, it took another 20 minutes before they finally gave us our check. Overall, the food is always decent here, but the service has taken a big drop over the years. I generally give places the benefit of the doubt, but I left Chou Chou tonight with the belief that I am never going back. It’s hard to say goodbye to a place I used to enjoy so much, but the lack of service is not worth the prices. Goodbye Chou Chou.

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PP
San Francisco
27 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a reliable meal at our local favorite.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Special Valentine’s Day menu - can’t believe I went for it. The duck confit was *HORRIBLE* !!!!!!

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MR
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The service was was excellent, wine recommendation was perfect. Had the fixed priced valentine dinner, great choices and large portions. Will go back and try lunch.

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C
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We went the day before Valentine's Day and the restaurant was full with a table or two empty. It was quiet and we enjoyed talking. The service was excellent as was the food. We ordered two of the prix fix dinners, and chose escargot, seared prawns with asparagus, chocolate pear tart, along with two glasses of champagne. We added a salad which we shared. The bread, too, was delicious and warmed. A fun evening with delicious food - could not be beat.

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EA
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great French bistro food...accommodating wait staff

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f
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

Always enjoyed their fresh hot crusted French bread they brought. It's so good. Enjoyed our appetizer Carpaccio de Thon, ahi tuna arugula with balsamic vinegar & truffle oil. For entree, our filet mignon was cooked to temperature as expected, it was very tasty, but the mashed didn't have enough butter and salt which is just okay. It was overall enjoyable dinner.

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OT
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Pleasant, but no extras for the birthday boy

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OT
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

First time going here and decided to go for SF Restaurant Week. The food was very good and a good bang for your buck. Service was mediocre. Almost wanted to ask if this was out server's first shift. Didn't get items that we asked for and food and wine placement on the table was just off. It was a small table and clearing items would have been helpful

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C
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, great staff.

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OT
Central Coast
4 reviews
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Foods very delicious n services awesome. We will be back

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h
1 review
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We went there for a family dinner during restaurant week. It was kids' first time trying French cuisine, and they really like it! Food is great, place is quiet. It's also at a convenient location, right next to forest hill subway station. We will come again.

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TS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Really the worst service I've experienced in San Francisco.

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AL
Charleston
2 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Unfortunately food was very average or low average. Salad made with wilted vegetables. Dressing not very remarkable. Not very appetizing. Salmon with bread crumbs was average. I have had better at half the price. . The bread was good. The service was good and the atmosphere was nice.

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LS
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Ambiance is nice, but food is not great for a french restaurant

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OT
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Service was slow at first, but it picked up later on. The food was delicious as usual.

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m
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

The P.E.I. Moules Marinieres were excellent. The French Pinot Noir (sorry, I don't remember the name) was modestly priced and excellent. The rest of the meal was mediocre at best. The generous portion of lamb chops, which was ordered medium rare, were medium well. The Noix de St. Jacques Sautees were overcooked and the duck confit was very dry with an overly thick, sticky and too sweet sauce.

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JF
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

We ate dinner here around 8 pm and the kitchen was ‘about to close’ which was odd for a Saturday night. The menu had all the favorites. We had a wonderful beet salad, beef borgignone and mussels in a creamy white sauce. The food was good. Dessert of crime brûlée was a bit eggy for our taste. The place only serves wine and beer not mixed drinks. It was nearly empty which creates a strange vibe for a Saturday night. I imagine It is a little neighborhood gem. There is a good chance we’ll be back. It is close by, has a parking lot, and is a convenient place to get French food without the pretense or expense of other French restaurants on the city. Give it a try.

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EL
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server Micheal gave us excellent customer service.

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J
San Francisco
41 reviews
Dined on January 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

I recently invited my "sista" to lunch at Chou Chou since she had never been there I KNEW she would love it and she did! She ordered the prix fixe luncheon of salad - mussels - chocolate mousse and was elated! Loved every bite of every dish She wants to go back again and again I'm a happy girl!

Our waiter Michael was wonderful as well!

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B
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 14, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Despite our Open Table reservation, the man who seated us said it wasn't on their computer. (I'm sure I had the correct day and time.) I'm guessing that he didn't listen to my full name and then seated us without checking further because they were not at capacity. It was definitely off-putting.

They fixed our wobbly table without being asked (good). I asked for some guidance on the wine, and the fellow was pretty brusque (bad). The bread and soup and entrees were great. Dessert (mousse and chocolate tart) was pleasant, but we had to wait and wait for the coffee ...somebody just forgot or assumed the other guy would do it. The place wrapped up before 9 p.m., which is OK with me. Overall, I would have appreciated some additional effort to make me feel special.

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EB
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Great neighborhood spot. Easy vibe and great food.

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TB
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

My cod was delicious but husbands Beef was dry and “disappointing” he said. The waiter was not attentive and brought us bread, but not our drinks! Drinks did not show up until the meal arrived. Not good enough to spend so much money per plate on. Sadly because I really like the place.

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U
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my favorite French restaurant.
The setting is extremely romantic.

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J
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We came for lunch. It was great, authentic. I had the $25 lunch special with a perfect fresh goat cheese salad with fresh greens (not just the standard spring mix), pistachios, a few strawberries and tomatoes with the perfect amount of dressing, the lamb crepe (nice and hardy) and finished with a huge chocolate mouse. My wife had the French onion soup followed by the seared ahi salad. The wine selection was great and the prices very reasonable. Would definitely recommend and come back to this neighborhood gem.

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m
San Francisco
139 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Came back to ChouChou for lunch for six after my wife and I had eaten dinner there a few weeks earlier. Our four guests were people I had worked with going back more than forty-five years ago. Everyone enjoyed getting together as well as the food, beverages, and serive.
It was great to use their parking lot as it was raining. The prix fix lunch was great and five of us ordered the same entree and one went his own way. As in our last visit the food was very well prepared with generous portions and everyone was very pleased. The prix fix lunch was a real bargain.
A couple of us ordered wine and again the pour very generous and the price was at least twenty percent or more less than what the wine would have cost at most restaurants even for a regular pour. We felt very welcome.
We will be coming back to dinner with another group of friends in the not too distant future.

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A
San Francisco
23 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Cozy place, soft music, inviting interior.
Had very satisfying and quiet dinner: a nice warm bread, very good Merlot and absolutely divine filet Mignon: encased in the thinnest crunchy crust of, probably, herbs; unexpectedly flavorful, very unusual and perfectly executed. Good desert. Friendly and helpful personnel. Definitely will come back.

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M
San Francisco
58 reviews
Dined on December 12, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The food is consistently good here. The noise level was quiet because we went for lunch. I've been there for dinner when the dining room was lively. Noisy, to be honest. See for yourself.

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c
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

When I discovered ChouChou had a 41/2 star rating with 2000+ reviews I felt confident to take my Parisian friend. I was deeply disappointed. First of all the decor is hideous. The color scheme is burnt orange and crimson with a dash of lime green. The wall decorations are so ugly they it is impossible to adequately describe them but they are not French. The menus are plastic. The wine list was MEH. The waiter coughed on our menus before presenting them to us and bumped my daughter’s head with a plate he was clearing from the table. The onion soup and crab salad were good and my beef bourguignon was average. These three dishes are the only reason I rated the food as 2 star. My friend’s soufflé was not a soufflé. It was an overlooked quiche with a side of flavorless haricots verts. My daughter’s duck confit Wellington looked unappetizing and lived down to the expectations inspired by it’s visual presentation. We were so disappointed by the food and annoyed by the service that we did not order dessert. The other guests appeared to enjoy their meals and seemed to know the staff. I infer this is a popular neighborhood spot. Maybe we had an unusual experience but even if the food and service improved greatly there would still be the interior design which is cross between a Sizzler Steak House and the Brady Bunch kitchen if Carol had allowed Alice to hang swatches of her old crimson colored kitchen curtains on the wrought iron rods she stole from Sizzler.

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OL
1 review
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My dining partners did not show up. I ended up having dinner alone. While waiting for them to come, I did not order drinks except hot water with lemon. The service was great, they made me felt so welcome. Had a great meal. I was able to taste every bite and layers of favors without distraction. The delicious dessert made it a Great night.

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NL
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

The main server was not having a good night. We felt pretty much ignored throughout the evening. However, the support staff was lovely. The ladies serving the food and clearing the table were very kind and attentive. Not sure it the waiter was having an off day, but we had an off meal as a result....

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TE
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

We have always loved Chou Chou Bistro for lunch or dinner. Unfortunately, over half of our group(of 7) received meat or fish that was overcooked. As always, we enjoyed our salads and desserts.
Our waitress was outstanding. I wish I knew her name. She is French....I believe. She was friendly, informed and attentive. She has been my waitress on many occasions.
We will return, because this is the first time we were not satisfied for our pricey meals. I do not mind paying for a meal that is prepared properly. Perhaps a party of 7 was too much for the chef to handle.

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CL
1 review
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

They are very patient to wait for us to review the menu and their wine list was good, wide range of selections, their wine price was reasonable. We were there to celebrate my husband birthday. They even surprised us with a complimentary Cream brûlée. Nice Quiet place for a date / anniversary.

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m
San Francisco
139 reviews
Dined on November 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

They have parking although a truck kept us out of the lot. (Not restaurant's fault.) Really good food, huge portions, generous wine pour and very reasonable price. The service was very good. We will be coming back probably with friends and/or family.

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H
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Super solid French comfort food. Not too pricey and the portions are a very good size. I would go back.

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DM
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food & excellent service
Perfect spot for a cozy dinner

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HB
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a lovely lunch at the Chou Chou.....the food was excellent and the service very good ....no complaints at all...we will be back...

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A
San Francisco
77 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Great neighborhood gem, hidden gem. Food is great with good selections. Cook comes out to greet the customers to ask if the food is fine, which is a nice touch and shows a caring for his customers. Waitress is friendly and very attentive and good suggestions and recommendations. Always a must try if you haven’t tried. It’s like being in France but not really there.

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YM
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service! Tasty food, good wines. Crepes and beef bourginion were delicious. My kid loved the bread with butter and the burger. Recommend for nice lunch celebration or dinner date.

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NN
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Very good french food, local ingredients, very nice staff and they good note is that one of them speaks French :)

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