Nordstrom Bistro N, Boca Raton
A restaurant inside a department store?
That’s what my one dining companion said as we walked into Nordstrom’s Bistro N located on the second floor of the Boca Raton department store. A recently new addition to the store, Bistro N hit all the high notes for us on this visit.
The decor is simple, yet elegant with rich woods, comfortable booths, tables and a full-service bar.
I tend to think this is one of the best kept secrets in the Boca Raton dining scene as only a few other diners were in the restaurant when we were there. I asked our server how business was and was told that it booms at lunchtime, but dinner is usually slow.
I immediately noticed the open-air kitchen where chefs prepare the dishes out in the open which is always a plus for me. I like to see where my food is being cooked.
Our server came over and introduced herself within minutes of being seated and given menus by the manager. We were informed that tonight’s soup would be a garden vegetable, which two of us made a loud “mmmmmmm!” indicating our pleasure. We looked over the cocktail and wine list and settled on a glass of red for her, a Cosmo for me and eh gads, a Miller Light for him.
Drinks arrived quickly and most of all… cold! A second server brought us over some freshly baked bread with olive oil for dipping with several olives. The bread was crusty and fresh and the olive oil was a delightful change from the butter you get at many restaurants.
My lady friend and I ordered the vegetable soup and my other companion ordered the French onion.
The soups arrived and they were piping hot. The vegetable was a tomato based soup that wasn’t too rich and had plenty of vegetables and lots of flavor. A definite winner for both of us as evidenced by the empty bowl and the “mopping up” of the remaining soup in the bowl with the provided bread. The French onion looked as good as it tasted. Thick and full of onions and just the right amount of bread. It was topped with bubbly, crisp cheese that makes this soup a favorite. I was told that it was almost a meal in itself.
For entrees, the lady chose the Bibb Lettuce Stack salad which arrived crisp and full of onions, olives, artichoke hearts, chick peas, tomatoes and feta cheese with a light red wine vinegar dressing. My friend chose the Chicken Paillard which consisted of a very generous portion of field greens atop a large, pounded flat chicken breast that was grilled to perfection. I opted for the Chicken and Angel Hair Pasta – a half chicken breast with, you guessed it, angel hair pasta topped with the most delicious blend of tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms and red sauce. There was a sauce to the side for the chicken which reminded me of a picatta sauce but was billed as rosemary butter sauce.
All our dishes were cooked to perfection, served hot and nothing ended up in a doggie bag, as we ate everything!
Throughout the meal we asked our server for more bread, which was brought over without hesitation.
After an excellent meal, we decided to try a few desserts to cap off the evening. My lady ordered the chocolate cake which our server highly recommended. It was a generous slice of moist cake served on top of a caramel sauce. It was so good, she ended up taking a small piece home for a midnight snack. My friend ordered the mixed berry shortcake which consisted of raspberries, blueberries and strawberries served with a fresh baked biscuit topped with whipped cream. There was nothing left to it in a short amount of time, indicating it was very well received. I chose the warm vanilla chocolate bread pudding which lived up to my expectations. A generous slice of bread pudding, topped with shaved white chocolate placed atop a creamy sauce which was simply heaven.
From the soup right up to the dessert, our meal was excellent! The only drawback of the night was when my lady friend ordered a cup of decaf coffee and it was cold. Our server brewed another pot and brought over a hot cup.
When I said this is the best kept secret in the Boca Raton dining scene, I meant it. It’s “the” place to be for the ladies who lunch crowd and can be that “in spot” for dinner as well. As a side note, I’m told they have a limited breakfast menu that’s served from 10am – 11:30am.
Nordstrom Bistro N
5820 Glades Road
Boca Raton, FL 33431