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“Good food, just not the best combination” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Bistrot L' Exploit

Bistrot L' Exploit
Ranked #5 of 2,319 Restaurants in Bordeaux
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$18 - US$43
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special Occasion Dining, Child-friendly, Local cuisine, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, After-hours, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Doha, Qatar
Level Contributor
106 reviews
73 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
“Good food, just not the best combination”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 August 2014 via mobile

I cannot fault the cooking. Each component of the dishes was perfectly cooked, and delicious. However, dishes in the menu were all very rich and coupled with rather the generous portions, it ruined the meal for me overall.

My husband had duck and hazelnut pate to start which was a tasty coarse pate. This came in a full size jam jar with some lovely fresh bread. I chose the lightest dish on the menu of sautéed frog legs served with a glass of tarragon cream. The frog legs were cooked perfectly, moist and sweet, and the tarragon cream helped breakdown the heaviness of the butter that the frog legs were sautéed in.

For main course, my husband ordered the entrecôte, medium rare. Gorgeously cooked, and perfectly red throughout. The only snag is, it came as a 6 inch log with a diameter of at least two inches! This huge piece of red meat was served with a ginormous portion of extremely creamy dauphinois potatoes and a carrot and cumin cake ( plenty of butter and cream in that too! ). My husband is notorious for mopping up leftovers, but even he couldn't finish his main course. The heavy starter didn't help.

I had the 6 hour slow cooked oxtail topped with pain fried foie gras. The oxtail was off the bone, and there must have been an entire oxtail in the dish! This was accompanied also by a deep baking dish of the extremely rich dauphinois potatoes, and the same creamy carrot and cumin cake, and a very rich red wine jus. Needless to say, I begrudgingly left over half of my meal behind, simply because I couldn't eat any more.

For dessert, we shared a Grand Marnier Soufflé. You may say, why order a dessert when you can even finish your meal. Well, the soufflé had to be ordered at the beginning of the meal, and we had no idea our starters and main courses were going to be so heavy. Anyway, the soufflé when it arrived was light, and we both shared a couple of token mouthfuls.

We knew the menu was rich when we booked, with plenty of foie gras, bone marrow, pigs trotters, oxtail, escargots etc. They all sounded delicious, and for the dishes we picked, they were indeed delicious. I just feel that the portion sizing, and the choice of accompaniments should have taken into account the richness of the main ingredients and be adjusted accordingly. It was a shame that despite the tasty delicious food we just had, we left the restaurant wishing we hadn't eaten any of it.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
Thank gizmopuppet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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727 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    594
    103
    22
    5
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
69 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“Enjoy the Experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2014

This was the second of two lovely meals in Bordeaux, both different and only a few yards apart from each other in a small quiet square, near the river.
Taking the advice of others we booked ahead and watched as several others just turning up on the night were turned away! It is small but the husband and wife 'front of house' team have to work really hard, constantly dashing up and down the stairs to collect the food. There are a few tables outside too and a private dining room upstairs (which was in use on the evening that we were there).
The food from a relatively short menu was uniformly excellent and well balanced. The house red wine, Le Decolletage both looked good and tasted better - not expensive either.
Friendly and fun, with excellent cooking. Enjoy.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
3 Thank macna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Columbia, South Carolina
Level Contributor
139 reviews
109 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“Tiny restaurant with excellent French comfort food”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2014

I always am suspicious when everyone likes a restaurant, but this place is really that good. I suspect they only book each table one time per night as they really do turn away people with no reservations. The owners are very friendly and are not afraid to make suggestions. Although my French is limited, I had fun interacting with our hostess. She told me that I could not have the bone marrow and the oxtail as that would be too heavy. She was right, the seared scallops served on an eggplant puree with a touch of mint and a drizzle of honey and white balsamic. The star was the oxtail cooked for 12 hours, boned and served with foie gras and a rich brown sauce. The wine list short but pairs well with the food. We finished with a classic Grand Marinier soufflé.
Worth the trouble making the reservation to experience such classic simply prepared food!

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Carl J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Indianapolis, Indiana
Level Contributor
97 reviews
58 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Restaurant That Is Intriguing and Comfy at the Same Time”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 July 2014

We stopped by on Saturday after reading the reviews, but they were booked. They are closed Sunday, so we booked for Monday. The menu is very interesting, with oxtail and pig feet being two of the highlights. My husband chose monk fish cheeks, and i tried the oxtail. Both dishes were very creative. The waitress suggested a nice wine to go with both dishes. Then came the desert - it was to die for. All this time we were looking at various musical instruments decorating the first floor. this place has character and very unusual food, so I would recommend it to anyone who likes to try new dishes.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Tatyana F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bordeaux, France
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Worth seeking out and booking”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 July 2014

The previous reviews on this place are correct. This is a lovely restaurant with a very relaxed ambiance, good and attentive service and very tasty, well presented and good quality food. You do need to reserve however. Although not full on the evening I visited people turning up without a reservation were largely turned away so be warned.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
3 Thank seasonedtavellor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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