Friday, December 23, 2011

Back at Bistro Provence in Slovakia - and Still Happy!

When travelling to a familiar place, it's always nice to revisit restaurants where you've had good meals and where you know you'll be satisfied.  Bistro Petite Provence in Bratislava, Slovakia is one of these for me, and today was the third time I've been there, visiting it each time I come.  And although the service isn't worth its salt, the quality of the food always makes me happy.

You must be thinking it's a little strange to be visiting a French restaurant when in Slovakia, but if you're familiar with Slovak cuisine, you'll know it's pretty heavy and saucy, so it's nice to take a break with something a little different.  I continue to like Petite Provence because it offers lighter food options such as fresh salads, crepes, open faced sandwiches, good wine and such.  Here are some of the new items we tried:

Spinach and Zucchini Crepe - I was excited by their hefty crepe selection, boasting both savory and sweet ones.  Gravitating to the savory, I chose the spinach and zucchini crepe, which was thin and delicious and stuffed with good quality fresh spinach, crescents of soft, roasted garlic, blue cheese and zucchini.  The mix of flavors was lovely, mild spinach juxtaposed with sharp garlic, salty blue cheese compared to the sweet zucchini - it was all very delicious and not too heavy.  I also enjoyed the generous side of mixed green salad, coupled also with diced beets, sweet corn, slivered carrots, all glazed with a light balsamic vinaigrette.

Sandwich and Salad Combos - My brother and dad both got sandwich and salad combos, my dad going for an open faced variety, while my brother choosing a traditional closed ciabatta.  Comparatively speaking, my dad's looked better and he said he really enjoyed it.  It looked gorgeous, decked generously with bright tomato slices, covered with melted stringy mozzarella cheese, and then sprinkled with fresh basil.  And the salad was the same as mine.

Peter's sandwich also looked good, but he was disappointed that it wasn't warmed up.  We encouraged him to send it back, but he was pretty hungry so he had it anyway, and sadly wasn't enthused.

- Peter and I ordered 1 deci of red wine, served in Bistro's beautiful tall stemmed wine glasses.  Even though I always enjoy the wine here, I have to admit that a tiny reason I get it is to drink out of those gorgeous glasses.  We both ordered a glass of the jagnet, a dry red local wine that comes from the Southern part of Slovakia.  It's smooth and dry, with notes of plums and cinnamon.

Service and Cost:
As I already hinted above, the service at Bistro Provence isn't the best, but I always come back for the quality of the food. The waiters are slow to approach you and you don't really feel like they pay that much attention overall.  This of course warrants a poor tip, which is more customary in this part of the world.  And as I always say, you work for your tips, they don't come without effort.

Prices are moderate for Americans but a bit pricey for Slovaks:

Crepes: 5.99 Euro
Sandwiches: 5.99 Euro
Wine: 1.99 Euro/Glass

Bistro Petite Provence - Hviezdoslavovo Namestie 25, Bratislava, Slovakia
02 5441 0340

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