We haven’t visited Bon Appetit Café (5 River Rd, Wilton, in the Stop and Shop plaza) since they expanded and took the chance to make a solo visit last night. The expansion has really changed the place into a larger restaurant. The original right side features an open kitchen and about 10 tables, and the new left side features a full bar and about 10 more tables. You can also dine outside but under the awning on fair weather days.
When we first visited Bon Appetit Cafe, we described it a French Bistro with both classic and imaginative menu items. This is still true, with the printed menu being rather simple and the daily blackboard menu being quite imaginative indeed. The food is all extremely good and well prepared.
The printed menu lists appetizers of escargot, smoked salmon plate, goat cheese and prosciutto, onion soup, house salad, fish soup, an iceberg wedge and oven baked French fries. The entrees include fish of the day (see blackboard), mussels marinara, clams with mustard and tarragon, duck leg confit, duck breast ala orange, chicken breast Normandy (we published this recipe earlier), filet mignon béarnaise and sirloin steak with green peppercorns.
Last night’s blackboard featured quite a few interesting additions. Starters included butternut squash soup, broccoli rabe soup with clams, crab curry salad, chicken liver mousse, clams casino, broccoli rabe and shrimp, and fresh calamari country style.
The entrees included under surf: cod au four, trout with caper sauce, bouillabaisse. Under Turf they included: veal shank with cider sauce, beef bourguignon, and 7 hour lamb.
We ordered the Goat Cheese and Prosciutto, which turned out to be a substantial salad of arugula with strips of zucchini, pickled red peppers, candied walnuts and three delicious cylinders of goat cheese wrapped in prosciutto. This was a truly delicious salad, showing a great deal of imagination. And the prosciutto-wrapped goat cheese is an easy idea to appropriate for your own meals.
For our main course we had the Trout with Caper sauce: again a well put-together and imaginative presentation. The capers were mixed with diced tomatoes and turnips, and served with whipped potatoes piped into place, broccoli, and little spheres of summer squash, steamed to perfection. The capers and other diced vegetables took the trout to new heights, and we are happy to appropriate the idea of serving little balls of just-cooked squash with our meals.
We also had the chance to photograph the clams with mustard and tarragon cream sauce that our neighbor at the next table raved about. It is nominally an appetizer, but makes a perfectly fine main course as well.
We didn’t have room for any dessert, but the dessert blackboard is amazingly tempting: Banana Tatin, Croissant Pudding, Ile Flotante (floating island), Crème Caramel, Profiteroles, Chocolate Tarte, Lemon Tarte, Chocolate Mousse, Nougat Glace, Ice cream and Sorbet. It could be worth a visit just to order desserts!
We were even more impressed than on our last visit. Bon Appetit has really come into its own as a marvellous bistro, and with the increased space you may even be able to get a seat on weekends.
Bon Appetit Café is open daily for lunch from 11:30-3pm and for weekday dinner from 5pm to 9pm, Friday and Saturday to 10pm, and Sunday from 12-9pm. It’s is definitely worth a visit. Reservations at 203-563-9002.