BistroVine is situated on the busy main street of Parkhurst, 4th avenue. Owned and run by Daniel and Monica Vine, this novel eatery takes on the feel of a European, village-style bistro.The menu encompasses all the classic dishes such as mussels with chips and duck confit with modern inclusions such as butternut or mozzarella springrolls.
Amongst the boozy buzz of Parkhurst’s 4th avenue, one can find this quirky quaint haven for food with a French flair...
Ambience: Bistro Vine’s charm and appeal lie in its unpretentious embellishment and simplicity. In true bistro style, its simply decorated. A petite space, dimly lit and filled with chairs and tables fit for intimate dining shared between loved ones- friends, family or lovers. Its exterior is nothing extravagant but its cosy interior is inviting. A chalk board sits outside, enticing passing patrons by displaying a few dishes off the menu; giving a hint at what can be explored but leaving so much more to be enjoyed. Moreover, the warm colours of brown and orange contribute to the comforting ambience. The display of wines, encourage pairing a glass or two with one’s meal as is typically true of the French bistro culture. One can expect to be welcomed by hospitable hostesses and expect to enjoy one’s meal amidst the comforting echoes of couple chatter and cheerful clinking of wine glasses. There are no frivolous furnishings to distract diners from the tantalising tastes and textures to be devoured! It’s all about the food here.
Food: French inspired food that is typically simple but that is tastefully touched with a fusion flair. To start; my taste buds were teased with moules frittes and escargots. Both were delicious but the most memorable were the moules.
Plump, juicy mussels lay in a velvety sauce of complimentary spices, wine and mussel stock enriched with a dash of cream that is typical of rich French cuisine. The frittes’s, accompanying garlic mayo was uninspiring but they fared well with the mussels’ sauce. Thereafter, the escargots excited with their uniquely curried gorgonzola sauce. However, it which was a bit rich for my palate. In Furthermore, the bread that accompanied was disappointingly hard and bland.
To follow; duck confit. The duck was delicately cooked and paired beautifully with the sweetness of braised red cabbage, apple and baked sweet potatoes. All this contrasted texturally with a few fried sweet potato shards. It was deliciously tender, enough for the meat to fall effortlessly off the bone and into my mouth until it was bare. Yet again, the dish was typically but lusciously rich. Other hearty traditional treasures (amongst others) like bouillabaisse and cassoulet can be found on the menu. I would certainly return for another meal, but will keep space for desert next time.
Drinks: there is a large selection of wines to be paired with one’s meal. Additionally, the waiter suggested a good wine!
Service: There are welcoming waitresses and waiters. My waiter was attentive and quite knowledgeable. Fortunately, one does not feel bombarded by a crowd waiters rushing around. However, I was disappointed in the absence of a manger, the owner or the chef. I think to put a friendly face to the bistro would be that personal touch that enhances the honest and homey charm.
Pricing: It is more expensive than your usual café. Its bistro grub with an air of elegance and quality that adds to the cost. However, it is not overpriced. My experience cost us, just over 200 rand per person for two starters and two mains.
And… I enjoyed a hearty but rich meal (as is typical of French cuisine) but for a Saturday night dinner in winter it is definitely the ideal treat. One can expect to leave with that comforting feeling one receives after a satisfying meal. It was good quality food and for a Parisian lover, it took me back to exciting Paris. This place is the perfect getaway from the craze of Parkhurst’s nightlife. Once inside, one is forced to focus on the healing, soothing, nature of food enjoyed with a loved one. This is a hidden gem that focuses on delivering quality and seeks to surprise with its simplicity!
Thank you for a wonderful evening and to Savanna, our wonderful waitress, for looking after us. Food was fantastic. Great ambience.
Mediocre at best. If u can't serve duck properly then don't tote yourself as a French restaurant. The salad was boring. No dressing just a sprinkle of pesto over the cheese. My duck confit came without a sauce. The accompanying vegetables were ok. I initially ordered braised lamb, but after 15 minutes was told they did not have it on the menu... I chose a red wine to go with it and had to settle for the duck. Not a go back to. Definitely will not recommend it. The creme brûlée was again non- committal. The descriptions in the menu are French but on the whole it's just glorified pub grub.
Had the most amazing evening at Bistro Vine last night. Had guests up from CT and the team at Bistro Vine made the evening so very special. From the minute we arrived the hostess and our divine waitress made sure we were treated like rockstars. As always food was outstanding. Thank you for a really stunning evening!
Indeed a lovely and charming French style bistro in Parkhurst. The service was good: our waitress was a lovely and friendly lady. She assisted in choosing the perfect wine, but poured the first glass and left the rest up to us. Also, she only came back to the table to clear our plates and did not confirm whether we were happy with our meal until we had already finished eating.
We were not happy at all. My previous experiences were sublime, but this one left us very disappointed. After much deliberation on what to choose, we both went for the "Fillet medallions with goose liver pâté and crostini served on spinach and mushrooms covered with a Port jus". It sounded different and irresistible. The taste didn't nearly meet our expectations: it was bland with no hint of port.
R600 for a bottle of wine, two glasses of tap water and two main dishes is rather expensive, but if the meal was as tasty as it should have been we would not have minded.
I doubt am I will go back, which is a pity as it is such a nice setting.