|Note to Plat Bleu: This is what bistro food looks like.|
Hungering for some hearty bistro fare, I had a friend call (on behalf of my wife and I) to request reservations at Plat Bleu in the Delano Hotel. Word came back that reservations weren't taken, and that the restaurant was located on the right side of the indoor and outdoor sections of what was formerly part of the Blue Door restaurant. When we arrived at 8:30, which was early for a late night spot like this, there was nobody sitting on either side of the indoor room, so we requested an outdoor table. A hostess told us to head there and we'd be seated, but once outside a manager told us all outdoor tables were reserved for Blue Door. So we went back inside, this time being informed that Plat Bleu's outdoor tables were at the far end of the pool area. Off we wandered -- not an especially short stroll -- until reaching the dining area. There we stood for some time, trying in vain to get someone's attention; finally I approached a waitress to ask if the section was for Plat Bleu. No, she said, only the pool menu was served there. When we returned to the reception podium, a different manager proved extremely gracious in seating us on the left side of the outdoor terrace and bringing us menus. But the bistro proved elusive in yet another way: While Plat Bleu's bill of fare contained a torchon of foie gras and a couple of other token French-inspired offerings, most items were variations on Blue Door's Mediterranean menu, including some of the very same dishes. I wasn't in the mood for this type of cuisine, so we got up to leave. On our way out, the manager came over to see what was up. We told her that, no hard feelings, but we'd been expecting escargot and onion soup and stuff like that; she explained that there was in fact onion soup, but it didn't get served until 2:00 a.m. As she related this to us, her facial expression let on that we were, perhaps, not the only customers thus far confused. We politely declined her proposal to have the kitchen prepare us onion soup, as well as a generous follow-up offer for drinks on the house, but she handled the situation as well as a manager possibly could. We managed to squeeze into a couple of seats at OLA's bar a few blocks away and shared a few small plates. It wasn't bistro food, but it was very tasty -- and more important, just what we expected.