Bijou Restaurant

4.1/5
Location
Information
Reviews
Details

Cuisine type

  • French,

Features

  • Restaurant With Parking,

Atmosphere

  • Casual,

Products and Services

  • Restaurants,

Languages Spoken

  • English,
Location
105 Erie St, Stratford, ON N5A 2M5
Useful Information

Opening Hours *Holiday hours

Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
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Rates:

  • $11 To $25,

Methods of Payment:

Ratings & Reviews - Bijou Restaurant

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Restaurantica12
By

Not the best place in town.

Maybe I had unrealistic expectations? I don’t know. But for me, Bijou has been sliding down the slippery slope for a few years. Stratford is a destination for people who care about Canadian gastronomy. And there are better options to be had elsewhere in this theatre town. Last time I was at Bijou, I had the halibut and it was overcooked. What’s with that? Bijou doesn’t pay attention to the kinds of details that matter…and it’s all in the details.

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Restaurantica12
By

A great place to go in Stratford

We had a great time at Bijou and I don't agree with any of these negative reviews. To me a chalkboard menu and higher prices reflect this restaurant's commitment to local food and keeping things interesting during changing seasons. I respect this restaurant for providing quality food and taking their time rather than taking a touristy "more bang for your buck" approach. One that note though, I did notice the service was a little slow. Not really slower than I'd expect considering the care that goes into the food, but if you're rushing to catch a show this place is maybe not your best bet. When we had our Stratford trip we made our reservation on a night where we weren't seeing any shows and got to appreciate a slower paced and delicious meal.

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Restaurantica12
By

Fabulous!

Squirreled away off the main downtown parking lot on Erie Street, this culinary gem is well worth the price (a prix fixe menu (2 courses or 3)). The food items (both appetizers and mains) are fresh, tasty, complicated with a surfeit of interesting flavours, artfully plated and presented by a group of knowledgeable, warmly personable servers (if you ask for a name you get a handshake and are asked yours...and they will stop and chat). DO try a cocktail. We had “French 75", a delightfully spritzy, refreshing mixture of gin, lime juice, simple syrup and champagne. Order different appetizers and mains do share so you get to savour as many of the delightful assemblages on the blackboard as you have people in your group. Despite the silly complaints, the board is not difficult to read and allows for maximum daily flexibility of product. My trout app. was marinated in soya and sake and served raw accompanied by jicama, sesame and coriander (just to give you an example of the extravagant range of flavours and textures you'll discover here). Wines are bottle/glass and in the regular price range. For dessert we sampled the artisanal cheese tray. Two days later I can still remember the blue cheese from New Brunswick (go figure how someone sourced this).

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Restaurantica12
By

Excellent a Stratford Gem

This is one of those Stratford Restaurants that gives the town its reputation as a fine dinning destination. We have eaten there twice now. Once about a year ago and again about 2 weeks ago. Both times were excellent. First trip we had the veal cheeks as our main course and they were melt in your mouth tender and wonderfully presented. Second trip we had the Salmon appetizer. It was a piece of "cured" salmon with a very light sauce. Excellent flavour. The main was the pork tenderloin and was perfectly cooked. The atmosphere is a little spartan but it suits the space. The semi open kitchen is a nice touch. The menu is on a chalk board and changes regularly. It is however hard to read. Although this is not a cheap place I found the food/atmosphere for money ratio to be quite within reason. Two courses each, a couple glasses of wine and the martini for just under $100.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Wonderful

Would dine there again in a minute! The food is wonderful and the atmosphere very intimate. We go for our anniversary every few years and have not had a bad experience yet. The staff is helpful and are willing to give as much time as you need to order and then to linger over your meal. No rush here. Keep it up!

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Our meal was an explosion of flavour - absolutely...

Our meal was an explosion of flavour - absolutely delicious. What all of us commented on is that we loved the portions - did not feel like blobs afterward but were very satisfied. I myself had been to this restaurant once before and immediately thought of it to celebrate a friends birthday on this particular evening. On both occasions that I have visited this restaurant I have not felt disappointed in any way and plan to return when I can. Kudos to Aaron and the employees for making our evening memorable and very satisfying.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Having eaten at Bijou several times a year for...

Having eaten at Bijou several times a year for several years, it's our favorite place in Stratford. We actually appreciate the chalkboard, as we know the menu reflects current local seasonal offerings. We always go to second seating so we can take our time to enjoy. While the portions are not huge (perhaps some of you should try the all you can eat places) they are more than adequate. The flavors are what sets them apart. The seasonings and sauces are first-rate, and very unique. Sauces are not heavy or overwhelming, but compliment the meat, poultry or seafood. Wine list is not extensive, but varied enough that everyone can find something to their taste. Servers are polite and professional, but can answer questions about the evening selections. While they don't have a neon sign flashing outside a pretentious entrance, it's not the outside that counts.. It's the quality and tastiness of the food that brings us back time and time again.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

I read the reviews online before we went, so I...

I read the reviews online before we went, so I knew about the alleyway entrance and the chalkboard menu. We visited also later (8pm) on Sunday evening, so we didn't have reservations and we were seated right away. All I can say is excellent!!! My meal was a taste sensation. Every bite was an explosion of flavours. With a meal this satisfying with taste, you don't need huge portions. The salad had every kind of tomato imaginable and they were so fresh. The whitefish was done in a curry sauce with zuccini. I tasted a little hint of cinnamon as well.It was divine. Dessert was heavenly and again just an explosion of flavours. The wine list was a little bit limited, but our server suggested a nice merlot and we were not dissapointed. Service was excellent!. If you are looking to fill a void in your stomach then maybe go somewhere else, but if you are looking for a fabulous dining experience, look no further... this is the place!

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Reading other reviews we were excited to try the...

Reading other reviews we were excited to try the restauraunt. Interesting blackboard menu, eclectic surroundings. BUT... with a prix fixe and little to show for it, this restaurant left us feeling hungry and ripped off. Nouvelle cuisine was so 80's - the plates were literally bare.. We are not big eaters, but having 6 fava beans felt like the chef was being very stingy for VEGETABLES - how expensive could a few extra beans be? Having eaten at top restaurants around the world, I found there are better options for their high prices in Stratford- next time I'll picnic!

Atmosphere: 2/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

We had reservations, thanks to a reviewer on this...

We had reservations, thanks to a reviewer on this site. We were promptly and warmly shown to a good table. Served, over the course of the meal, by a young well trained, knowledgeble staff. Again thanks to an earlier review, knew that the menu is a chalkboard that everyone must leave their table to read. A minor inconvenience that disappears when one realizes that everyone gets in the spirit, and patrons even chat with one another as they stand together reading the board. As for the food, excellent is the only way to describe it. My lamb was succulent, tasteful and done to perfection. My wife's onglet was also delicious and done exactly as she had asked. Perfect quantity and lovely presentation. We will certainly go back the next time we go to a show in Stratford.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

This place is very unique, you really need to dig...

This place is very unique, you really need to dig to find this restaurant as it is tucked in behind a parking lot. But it is worth the adventure! The restaurant is very small, with a chalk board menu. I’m not sure I liked the way the menu was displayed as you needed to walk up to the chalk board to make any sense out of it. I started off with an appetizer of some sort of fish, spicy yet pickled, a very interesting combination but the chef made it work well. Now the main course I had was an Indian style lamb. This dish was cooked to perfection, you will be amazed by how well this cook does his thing. I did however leave a bit hungry as the portions are very small. All in all the food was top-notch and the service was excellent, Truly one of Stratford’s hidden gems!

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

The place was hard to find (in an alleyway behind...

The place was hard to find (in an alleyway behind the Stratford Hotel) and we were seated in front of the kitchen counter, but we did not mind. It was cozy and what you expect from a european establishment. The food was excellent. We liked the menu on the board, no need to print or reprint menus. We had the lamb which was medium rare, tender and delicious. I would certainly recommend the place to friends and relatives. Worth a visit every time we come to Stratford.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Although this restaurant is listed as a French...

Although this restaurant is listed as a French restaurant it didn't have much in the way of a traditional French menu. The menu is more Canadian to me but varied and written up on a chalkboard with about 8 or 9 appetizers and mains. It is prixe fixe at $40 for 2 courses and $49 for 3. Throw in a bottle of wine (least expensive is $40) and that puts you at at $120-$138 (+30% tax/tip)per couple. The food is worth it. Fresh, light, very well-prepared, well-presented. I would go back for more. As to the people who found it too noisy, they probably got stuck at the table by the serving counter. We almost did, but refused it, and thoroughly enjoyed our evening, as apparently the full house did.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

While the restaurant, tucked behind a old hotel...

While the restaurant, tucked behind a old hotel and tavern, seems simple in style and layout, the food and service is what makes a dinner at Bijou a wonderful experience. Don't expect a side of veggies with your filet, but a adventurous mix of textures, colours and flavours that make you realize just how horrendously boring other restaurants are. Unfortunately not one of Stratford's best kept secrets anymore, but still looking forward to my next exceptional meal there.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Definitely my favourite restaurant in Stratford...

Definitely my favourite restaurant in Stratford. Unique and delicious!

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Slick presentation; the recent renovations move...

Slick presentation; the recent renovations move the entire experience up a notch; food sophisticated, delicate, and nuanced. Service much better than sugggested in previous review. Worth the trip to Stratford even if not taking in the Festival.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

I would just like to post a review of Bijou to...

I would just like to post a review of Bijou to correct any misapprehensions that people might have about this wonderful restaurant, especially given the - one - bad review posted above. Bijou has wonderful food and usually has terrific service. My wife and I have eaten there almost one dozen times in the past three years. Never once have I regretted it. Let's put it this way; I have enjoyed foods at Bijou that I never normally eat, like tuna (yuck, right?), beets (blagh!) and others. Well, at Bijou these items are delicious because of the chef's incredible sauces and flavouring. Yes, the menu is on a chalk board and maybe it is difficult to see sometimes, depending upon your seating position. Persons with moderate intelligence or better will get up and walk towards the chalk board, or will ask their server to read off the menu. Yes, the restaurant may be noisy, but a restaurant that is full of patrons is a good sign, isn't it? My wife and I have eaten in some of the finer restaurants in Toronto, Montreal, and in Paris, and Bijou is one of our favourites. If it's open for our anniversary next month, we are going there again.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

The decor and service are impoverished, but grab...

The decor and service are impoverished, but grab a smart cocktail and settle into some conversation and the food will overwhelm with its unpretentious presentation and flavourful notes, temperatures and textures. Prix fix with considerable latitude for choice. It was easy to overlook a scant wine list when the food required no further accent.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 3/5
Service: 3/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Pretentious! The restaurant maybe the best kept...

Pretentious! The restaurant maybe the best kept secret in Stratford and the food OK if you can put up with all the oddities that do nothing to enhance your dinning experience. The entrance is tucked between two buildings and the end of a parking lot. The buildings look defunct and there is not a sign of the restaurant unless you are standing right in front of it. When you enter, the open kitchen and poor ventilation will meet you with greasy smells that will permeate your dress and you will smell like working a shift there (so much for the theater after a dinner experience). The chalkboard is a joke. You cannot see if well from all the tables and you end up standing in front of it trying to decide. I saw this concept in pubs but the boards were few on had few, simple dishes. The restaurant is small and when busy the noise level will approach a sport bar level. So goes your conversation. And the food? The food was pretty good but all the distractions and annoyances spoiled our dinning experience thoroughly. Never again.

Atmosphere: 3/5
Food: 1/5
Service: 1/5
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