For my birthday, we went to the French Garden Restaurant in Sebastopol. It’s a fancy place that replaced Marty’s Top ‘o the Hill when it went away. We’d always driven by it wondering what it would be like, and had high hopes that the food would be as good as the restaurant looked. But, well, it wasn’t.
The ambience of the place is fantastic. Nice artwork on the walls, very pretty, warm inviting paint colors, very romantic.
They have two menus, one is a bar menu, and the other is a dining room menu. When we were there, the dining room looked completely empty, but we put that down to either hard economic times, or it being relatively early. We chose to eat in the bar (which has tables and chairs), which was a little more alive. We were told we could eat off the dining room menu or the bar menu in the bar.
It started off well with some nicely cooked clams, around 6 of them for only $5. I was hopeful. For dinner, I had the ahi ($25), and Wendy had portobello sandwich ($10). The ahi was over-seared, and pretty flavorless. Maybe I was just spoiled by the great ahi I had had in Hawaii, but this just didn’t taste like the same fish at all. Wendy’s sandwich was unspectacular and had too much mayo (why mayo at all?).
Hopeful that a French restaurant would have good desserts, we ordered a molten chocolate cake (another favourite of ours from Hawaii). Again we were disappointed. No attempt was made at presentation at all, just a small cake with a scoop of homemade ice cream on the side. The cake itself was overly sweet, but not really chocolately.
To top it off, the cappuccino I ordered with my meal never arrived. When she finally remembered, she brought it with the bill, and didn’t charge me for it. Good thing too – I wouldn’t have paid, the froth was cold, and the cappuccino itself was luke-warm at best.
When will we ever learn, if a restaurant is empty, just keep on driving!