About Circle Bistro

Circle Bistro, located in the heart of the Foggy Bottom Neighborhood, offers a casual yet chic bar and restaurant atmosphere serving American comfort fare including a wide selection of sandwiches, salads and sharing plates. The extensive beverage program showcases over 12 wines by the glass, domestic and imported beer, and a seasonal cocktail list. Our pet-friendly outdoor patio is the perfect oasis to escape the hustle and bustle of the Nation’s Capital. Circle Bistro is the ideal place for breakfast meetings, business lunches, and happy hour gatherings.

One Washington Circle
Washington, DC 20037
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Contemporary American, American

Hours of Operation:
Breakfast:
Monday - Friday from 7 am - 11 am
Saturday and Sunday from 7 am - 12 pm

Lunch:
Monday - Friday from 11:00 am - 3:30 pm

Lounge:
Monday-Friday from 3:30 pm - 11:00 am

Happy Hour:
Mon - Fri from 5 pm - 8 pm

Cross Street:
23rd, New Hampshire & L

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(202) 293-5390

Website:
http://www.circlebistro.com/

Catering:
Ask us about Bistro To Go our newest to-go style catering option to fit your office meeting needs!

We are the number one venue for your social and corporate events. Customize your event with one of several options tailored to fit your needs. We’ve got all ends covered from the moment you arrive.

Contact our Catering Manager, Annie Schmidt at 202.730.1246 or avschmidt@modushotelsdc.com for more information and to receive your custom proposal.

Parking Details:
Complimentary valet parking for diners available at One Washington Circle Hotel.

Public Transit:
Foggy Bottom Metro Station

Executive Chef:
Ashley Olexa

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cafe, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Circle Bistro is the perfect venue to host your social and corporate events! Food and beverage packages can be customized and our events manager is available to you every step of the way.

For private event inquiries please view our Private Dining section for more details.

Specials

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Details
Sun - Tue 5:00PM - 6:00PM 8:00PM - 9:45PM

Wed - Sat 8:00PM - 9:45PM

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Private Dining

In partnership with One Washington Circle Hotel, Circle Bistro has the ability to cater a multitude of events. Our Catering Manager and Executive Chef are happy to work with you on a tailored menu to fit your event needs in one of our state of the art banquet rooms, lounge or private dining room.

Circle Bistro Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.0

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.0

service

3.9

ambience

3.9

value

4.0

Noise

Quiet

86% would recommend it to a friend

Bar Seating (3)
Business Meals (3)
Casual (2)
See All
Great for Lunch (2)
Neighborhood Gem (2)
Quiet Conversation (2)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Good for Birthdays (1)
Kid-friendly (1)
Special Occasion (1)
Cozy (1)
Fit for Foodies (1)
Good for a Date (1)
Good for Groups (1)
Healthy (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
Pre/post Theatre (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Comfort Food (1)
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886 reviews
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on September 14, 2014

Coffee on a Sunday was warm bordering on cool, service was in attentive though it was not busy. We had to ask for water, the soup came out only a couple minutes before the entree and no refills on coffee were offered. The food was good though.

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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on September 2, 2014

Don't waste your time. Plenty of other outstanding restaurants in DC to try.

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food2
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 (New England)·Dined on August 23, 2014

When we arrived at Circle Bistro the host did not seem to be expecting us. the tables for 3-4 were all taken and they had to put 2 small tables together. We sat and waited more than a few minutes to place a drink order and noticed other patrons complaining, leaving without food and a large party with children yelling at a wait staff. We thought maybe we should leave and cut our losses. Our order was taken promptly. After a few minutes my daughter actually changed her mind and order, and in no time at all our meals were in front us us just as ordered. The food was delicious and well presented. We expected to wait a long time after what we witnessed, but not so. Clearly not a menu for young children. We enjoyed it and will return.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 16, 2014

We dined ahead of a Saturday night show at the Kennedy Center. There was only one other party in the restaurant, which is a shame because the food and service were wonderful. The staff was attentive without being overpowering, and the pacing got us out of there without feeling rushed.

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 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 15, 2014

An early evening reservation meant we were some of the first customers to arrive. Parking was very easy thanks to the valet service, which was complementary with dinner. The staff was very welcoming. The appetizers we ordered (a grilled peach salad and tuna tartare with superb potato chips) were excellent. A glass of Pinot noir paired well with the black angus burger, which was perfectly cooked. The gnocchi was a little short on flavor compared to other dishes we enjoyed, but was also perfectly cooked. A delicious peach cobbler to end the evening was a sweet finish. Overall a fantastic experience.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience5
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vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on August 9, 2014

Interesting choices and affordable prices. Gets you in and out in a reasonable time, and there is a shuttle to the Kennedy Center just across the circle. Good selection of wine by the glass. Service was pleasant but uneven.

Tags: Great for Brunch
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 8, 2014

This restaurant got some pretty good reviews, which is why we tried it. The service was excellent, but the food was not impressive. It was cooked well, but it felt more diner than anything.

Tags: Notable Wine List
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food2
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 1, 2014

This wonderful restaurant was empty when we came on Friday evening at 7:15. The room was warm because the air hadn't been turned on. Part of the dining area was closed off. What's happening?
The service and food were the usual high quality. We very much hope that Circle Bistro will get the support and clientele it needs to continue. It's always been a favorite of ours when we go to the Kennedy Center.

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food5
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 26, 2014

My husband, Mom and I had the pleasure of dining here last Saturday before our Lion King date at Kennedy Center. What a great meal! Max, the manager, was amazing and helpful, and our waiter, Jeremy, was so sweet. Everything we ate was delish and presented so nicely! We shared arugula salad with grilled peaches and goat cheese...to die for! Then, beef carpaccio, tuna tar tar, and chilled melon soup apps. All were mouthwatering! Dinner was tuna seared with panko over an eggplant and raisin concoction of some sort. DELISH! Tuna was perfectly seared. Mom/hubby both had the homemade spinach papardelle with veal and mushrooms. They both raved! Coffee was outstanding, and my chocolate cake with cappuccino gelato was the perfect ending.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 24, 2014

Meeting friends for dinner at Circle Bistro was an inspired choice. The calm and relaxed atmosphere allowed for quiet conversation. The waiters were attentive without hovering. The highlight of the evening was the food. The melon soup was perfectly chilled and delicious; the peach salad showcased a melange of flavors that were truly greater than the sum of their parts. The gnocchi was excellent, the crab cakes were well done, and the salmon, with the confit jam and cornbread was thoroughly satisfying. We ended our meal with a shared sorbet, which was a delightful palate cleanser and topped off our evening. Now that we've found this hidden gem in Foggy Bottom, we will definitely return.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food5
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vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on July 15, 2014

Circle Bistro is near work, and the menu and pricing appealed to me. We found a lovely little restaurant with a friendly staff and creative food selections, yet it was virtually empty! Just 1 table was occupied when we arrived, a few filled in later. The waitress's suggestions let me to an app and salad vs entree: delicious corn chowder and amazing tomato and watermelon salad (yellow watermelon - who knew? Same taste, less 'watery'). My guest's burger was prepared to her liking, and we had desserts, too YUM!. I recommend Circle Bistro to Washington Circle/Foggy Bottom diners who seek a quieter yet classy option to the hyper-busy and noisier restaurants south of the Circle. Enjoy (we did!)

Tags: Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 11, 2014


Place empty when I arrived. Ordered ceaser salad no croutons (allergy). Salad full of croutons mixed in so I had to pick them out. My host ordered linguini with d mussels. There were 5 small mussels. One had a shell not opened. I can't belueve they served it. Another shell was empty. 5 hand placed on the salad so there is no excuse. Server took order. Three min later came back and asked if we were ready to order . confused us with the only other party in the room. Midway a different server started serving us. No explanation. Completely amateurish and possibly spoiled food.

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 (Washington DC)·Dined on June 13, 2014

Had a wonderful pre theatre meal - absolutely delicious and very thoughtful service.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups
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food5
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 30, 2014

We had the prix fixe menu. The salmon was excellent, the chicken was pretty routine. The cocktails were very good; didn't skimp on the alcohol. The service was attentive and friendly. Asparagus soup was starchy but had a great presentation. Overall, we enjoyed it and would return.

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food4
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 23, 2014

We all had sandwiches...they were tasty but nothing special. Felt the service was less than great...had to ask for things more than once.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food3
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 13, 2014

I have eaten here many times, and continue to return. On this last visit, the management had changed since our previous visit, or so I heard. The food was excellent as always, and creatively presented. The old practice of offering a 3-course pre-theater prix-fixe menu had been reinstated, to my pleasure, after a few years without it. The servers were coutreous and conscientious, although they lacked the self-confidence that I had come to expect. The only mishap was that the after-dinner coffee was delivered lukewarm. This was corrected cheerfully.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 8, 2014

Dropped by the restaurant for an appetizer or two prior to seeing a show at the Kennedy Center. The food was quite good as was the service. Hit the spot.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 22, 2014

Good food. New ideas.
SLOW kitchen and service, even when restaurant is not at all busy

Tags: Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 17, 2014

Excekkent food. menu has become a bit more expensive.
Waitress seemed confused. She blamed it on the new menu, but she may have been a bit preoccupied.
There were only 3 tables filled that afternoon. The restaurant deserves more guests.

Tags: Great for Brunch, Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch
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 (New York Area)·Dined on April 10, 2014

I booked the restaurant for an informal business lunch when my first choice in the neighborhood was not available, so I was pleased with the convenience. The ambiance was good--not too formal, a quiet buzz from diners, and I appreciated that my party was put in a corner. The service was friendly, but too overbearing; we had three people who kept coming around, too frequently, and we felt badgered. The food was so-so--nicely presented, but the soup had a weird taste and the salad was unremarkable; my first choice was not available, and as I already felt rushed by the service, I made a quick decision and was not entirely happy.

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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 4, 2014

Stopped in after work for the pre-theatre dinner. Inflated wine prices, poor meal (cold soup with chunks to big to eat without cutting), salty entree, flaccid and Kroger quality dessert. Coffee shop ambiance at best. Place was empty except for screaming babies and one very large obnoxious party seated next to us - with another screaming baby. Did I mention place was empty? We complained about the noise but servers are clueless. Mostly standing around chatting cause they have nothing else to do. Took a while to get dessert - probably had to run to Harris Teeters to pick it up. Won't go back.

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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 2, 2014

Unfortunately in the 5 or more years I've eaten in this restaurant, this is the first time the food was deplorable. It was obvious that the chef was not in the kitchen during this lunch. The butternut squash soup was watery & tasteless and did not even have the garnishes described on the menu in it. The beef tartare was brown and old as if it had been prepared with rotting meat or had been prepared days ahead and refrigerated. The crab cake was smelled extremely fishy when brought up to your mouth which made it impossible to eat. It seemed like it was not prepared with freshly picked crab meat. I love this restaurant and believe it was left in the wrong hands that day. There was no quality control in the kitchen.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 2, 2014

Let me emphasize first that service and setting were excellent. The Maitre d'/waiter asked me how my lunch was (French onion soup and duck confit salad), and I said "quite good". He was concerned that I didn't rate it more highly and wanted to know why. At the time I wasn't up to dissecting the meal and interrupting my lunch conversation, so here goes.

The French onion soup was well executed (good umami), but the onions were surprisingly low-flavor, and the Gruyere lacked the sharp note I'd expect. I'll chalk those problems up to raw materials. The duck confit salad was good, but watery. I'm not sure if it was the julienned apples or residual water in the greens; the extra water really took the shine and focus off the duck.

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food4
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vip
 (Denver)·Dined on April 1, 2014

We were here on a very slow night in the restaurant. The time between salad and entree was far too long and when the entree came it was obvious it had been sitting for awhile. The salad was good but the rest was passable. In a city of great restaurants, this one doesn't measure up!

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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on March 22, 2014

In other words, eat here only if you are a hotel guest and don't have any other options.

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 (Washington DC)·Dined on March 16, 2014

We had a lovely birthday dinner after a matinee performance on Sunday. The waiter was personable and went out of his way to check with the chef about ingredients in a few of the dishes (one member of our party is gluten-intolerant). There were only a few tables occupied early on Sunday, so it was quiet, which suited us well. The monkfish and the risotto got rave reviews! Since we had ordered the pre-theatre menu, our meals included dessert. The waiter brought us all glasses of very nice port for a birthday toast -- a very welcome treat! Circle Bistro remains my go-to place for pre- or post-theatre in Foggy Bottom.

Tags: Special Occasion
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vip
 (Houston)·Dined on March 1, 2014

We were the only people in the restaurant

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 (New York Area)·Dined on February 27, 2014

I take guests there when I want a chance to talk and enjoy good food. Nice bar also.

Tags: Good for Groups, Neighborhood Gem, Great for Lunch
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food5
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 25, 2014

The staff person who greeted us when we arrived seemed surprised to see us and then to learn we had an 8:30 PM reservation. Got the impression that the Circle Bistro did not cater to late diners. This was reinforced when all the other diners left by 9:30 PM and the waiters started rearranging tables for the next day's business. Our waiter assured us that we were not keeping the place from closing, but we did get that impression.

My girlfriend had the cheese board, mussels, and a small salad. I got the salmon rillete and gnocdi. Everything was tasty, although the pasta was a little heavy.

We may return, but not for another post-theater dinner.

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 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 21, 2014

Besides wonderful food (especially the Roasted Butternut Squash Soup) there is an added advantage: you can avail yourself of the free valet parking, then take the Kennedy Center Shuttle to the play or concert and return. I gave the attendant $5 -- which saved me $17 if I had parked in the Center Garage.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 18, 2014

Although the menu is limited, food quality is excellent. Friendly and professional staff. Highly recommended for small groups/intimate dinners.

Tags: Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 14, 2014

If you're staying at the hotel this place is in, then it might be a convenient spot -- and it might be good just for drinks, too. But I went with my boyfriend for Valentine's Day because they had a special prix-fixe menu, and we were both underwhelmed. It was $45 a person for three courses, and they were all pretty average. After messing up my boyfriend's appetizer, it took 30-40 minutes after the first course to get the second course. With spotty service and pretty average food, it's not a place I'd go again.

Tags: Romantic
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food2
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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 14, 2014

Food was good, beautiful presentation , nice wait staff!

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 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 9, 2014

Circle Bistro offers a great local spot to meet a friend for good conversation and food. The menu has everything from cheeseburgers to seafood. Offers valet parking which makes it easy to run over for a meal from Virginia. Fun Bar during the week.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Great for Lunch
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vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 8, 2014

We selected this restaurant based on its rating and proximity to our hotel. The atmosphere in the restaurant was inviting and the service was good. However, the food was mixed. I ordered the butternut squash soup since I had read so many positive reviews of it, but they were out of it (at 7:30 on a Sat night). I also had the seared scallops with grit cake and braised red cabbage. All of the elements were tasty (except the grit cake) but the dish didn't hang together well. My daughter ordered the seafood mezzaluna which she didn't like. when I tasted it, the pasta was undercooked, the dish was under sauced, and the seafood filling was dense and unappetizing. However, the apple crisp desert was wonderful.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food2
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 (Philadelphia)·Dined on February 8, 2014

We enjoyed our Saturday evening dinner at Circle Bistro. The menu is limited but all of our dishes were well-executed. Kate, our server, was lovely and fun. Our only quibbles: the lighting is a bit too bright, and tablecloths would be nice. But we would definitely return.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food4
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vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on February 7, 2014

Gnocchi was tough and dry. Service was so-so. Date's food was bland. Wouldn't recommend it.

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vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 2, 2014

We really enjoyed our meal at Circle Bistro, a boutique restaurant located inside the Washington Circle Hotel. The Monkfish was superbly prepared, and the Duck Confit salad was a delicious medley of fresh flavors. The Bistro has an excellent wine list, and were offering a special on 1/2 bottles of wine. Kate and staff took excellent care of us and I highly recommend for a top notch meal at a quiet restaurant with a modern atmosphere. We look forward to returning to sample the desserts.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion
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food5
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service5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 1, 2014

My husband and I had been to Circle Bistro before, but it had been a while ago. We had forgotten just how good Circle Bistro is. The food was all very well prepared. The squash soup was fantastic. The mussels were very tasty with a delicious broth. The Waygu steak frites and the salmon were both prepared perfectly. We also enjoyed the apple crisp. It was a delightful meal and I think we will be back more often.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion
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food5
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vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on January 25, 2014

We went there when the temps were in the 20s and the wind was pretty strong. We walked in and it was warm and cozy. They had fireplaces lit which was very nice. My husband ordered the butternut squash soup but the portion was too large for us to finish. The chef came out to ask if there was anything wrong with it and we said that it was just more than we wanted. I thought that was pretty cool that they wanted to know if there was an issue.
I wanted salmon but was not a fan of their preparation. It was in a salad and I wanted potatoes with mine. They made the change for me and it was a very nice dinner. We had nice wines by the glass and apple crisp for dessert. The waitress and support staff were very nice. I would go back!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food5
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service5

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