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“Fresh tasty food”
Review of papillon brasserie - CLOSED

papillon brasserie
Cuisines: French
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Description: Excellent French restaurant in the quaint Pennsylvania suburb of Reading. Truly a gem and definitely worth writing about.
Reviewed 30 May 2013

I read all the other reviews and i actually had a good experience here.
Yes, the place is a bit pricey but it's worth it. The food is fresh and delicious. I had that day's special - a nice fresh cold soup with goat cheese and spinach - perfect for summer - with warm bread, grilled trout with spinach and baked potatoes and almond tart for dessert - all for less than $30 and everything was really good. It's nice that they have BYOB. You can bring your favorite wine.
The staff was nice (except for the cook - we had a question about the herbs he put on the trout and he seemed bothered by it - weird). Overall is was a nice experience!

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1  Thank Roxana M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (39)
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22 - 26 of 39 reviews

Reviewed 17 May 2013

I can just repeat the opinions I have read here: food-quality is average with a poor value for money and the service was horrible.
We went with some colleagues after the recommendation of one of our local co-workers in the company we are working for in Wyomissing. We had high-expectations and were even willing to pay a higher price than usual if food quality was worth it but we were highly disappointed. The food was not particularly good, obviusly a bit better than the one served in the typical franchise-restaurant but still not worth the high price they charge. Probably their best dish would be the french fries and that gives you an idea of the quality level (it is true that there you can't order "french fries", it is pomme de frites or nothing, pathethic).
But above all, the service was insulting. When we arrived we were sat next to the only table occupied at the moment, almost face-to-face with the other people. We asked for a cheese appetizer to share between the 4 of us, though they decided to serve it for four people and charge us 4 times the price. After the appetizer we had to wait almost half an hour for the main entree and, finally, probably anticipating that we weren't happy at all and the gratuity would be low they decided to include in the bill, even we were just a party of four! Generously they decided they deserved a gratuity that was well above the usual 20%!!

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2  Thank Carlos M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 March 2013

Summary:

The food was good. It tasted great. The guys know how to cook, and there's no doubt about it. I would recommend their FRENCH FRIES. Fantastic. Order it as "FRENCH FRIES" and see what happens. They will laugh at you for not saying "pomme de frites". Where I think the problem comes in is when the owners of the restaurant and waitress think they're better than you in every aspect and they charge you an arm and a leg to be showered by their pretentious French attitude. (aka "we despise you dirty Americans")

Food Quality / Cost:

Located in West Reading, one of the poorest towns in the nation, it comes as a surprise that they ask for $40 per person for an entree. I could understand if it was a ton of food, set to feed you for days, but this is ridiculous. My fiance and I ordered a Lamb Sausage appetizer. Appetizer? Are you kidding me? What they brought out was a single sausage link. We aren't talking a hefty Italian sausage meant to feed two, no, we're talking a tiny little sausage link with a piece of baguette on the side. Price? $10. $10 for a sausage link! I don't care if it's sitting on a bed of kale and sprinkled with raspberry seeds and sauce, it was a gyp. The chicken entree was decent, but again, this cost $26 for a little 6oz chicken breast, a couple little potatoes and a piece of baguette. Like I said before, the FRENCH FRIES were delicious. However, don't ask for any sort of condiment like Ketchup. The chef will fume from the mouth from being so insulted. Other things are the menu were ridiculously overpriced. Toasted nuggets of bread with a selection of "chef's choice" cheeses? $14.50 a person. CRACKERS AND CHEESE appetizer for TWO people somehow equates to $29. Mind you all of this is without drinks. It's BYOB so all they have consists of water, bottled water, and lemonade. Of course, they don't tell you this and try to sell it like it's some divine French offering. "Limonade Soda, Evian, and 'West Reading'". What's the West Reading, you ask? It's tap water. Tap water. Just say it. And after ordering, prepare to wait forever to get your food.

Atmosphere:

Like I said, I brought my fiance to this little eatery on a weekday evening. It was pretty much empty except for one couple already eating there. When we walked in they sat us at a table right next to the other couple. When another couple walked in later, the waitress sat them down next to us because they didn't have a reservation. Our elbows were nearly touching we were so close together. Forget having a semi-private conversation when you can feel someone to your right and left. I can't understand why you would do this. The whole floor is open let's give us some space, would you? Note: couples who walked in with reservations were seated two tables away from others. Oh boy! In addition to the seating issues, you can also watch the chefs cook, but you can also be right there to hear their pompous attitudes. The waitress tells the chef what we ordered like it was a joke. They laughed and began cooking. What's funny about us ordering food?

Conclusion:

I don't know if I was in on a bad day, or what, but this place is terrible. It is not worth being laughed at, scoffed at, and your wallet being raped just to try some delicious, authentic, French SNACKS. In one of the poorest towns in the nation you should NEVER have to pay $50 to feed two people and leave hungrier than when you came in. Afterwards we traveled into Reading to the Ugly Oyster and ended up stuffing ourselves for literally $7 each. I don't know how this place stays in business - hardly anyone eats there and I can see why. In this recession I sincerely ask you to take your money someplace else.

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5  Thank Carl S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2013

I was looking forward to a nice light french meal... sadly it did not live up to my expectations.

First - it was BYO wine or beer. And I really liked the idea of having a nice glass of red...

The waiter - will missing in action is a good description... Lights were on but no body was home. Nice interior... ordered house salad, duck and side dish of pommies frites.. The salad was fantastic. Fresh greens and a nice seasoning. I had to ask for bread which was great as well. The duck took 40 minutes. They were not busy... Just not paying attention. Duck was tough and not well cooked, on a nice bed of veggies and something that tasted great. But the Duck just did not cut it... The Pommies were excellent and it was a massive order. Enough for 4 people and I was eating alone... Here again, a good waiter would have advised but not the guy on staff.

So Papillon did the simple things really well but a dish they should have been excellent at, the Duck, fell short of expectation.

Sadly, the Papillon was recommended by the Courtyard where I was staying...

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3  Thank Marcus W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2012

We were so looking forward to a nice meal at the Papillion and were greatly disappointed. They were out of 4 menu entrees when we arrived (6:30) and it was so noisy, it was difficult to carry on a conversation. When we asked for bread with the salad, we were told that it would come with the entree. The salmon entree was fishy tasting and the vegetables that accompanied it were a few pieces of celery and carrots that were sauteed. There were also potatoes that were not fully cooked. The bread was so hard - very difficult to break in half - no butter. My friend had the steak-frites and the steak was very bland with potato stick like french fries that tasted ok. We felt that the menu was a bit pricey for what we got - salad was $7.50. Everything is a la carte. Don't waste your time here - go to Good Eats, Bistro 614, West Reading Tavern or GNA Ristorante, which are just steps away.

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5  Thank Saucy26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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