Mar 21 2013



The name is slightly confusing, as Bistrot in Russian (also in French) would mean a lower quality and cheaper eatery type of place, but this Bistrot in Moscow serves you Italian food, and is quite an expensive and high scale restaurant. Bistrot is owned by the Restaurant syndicate group which owns many other restaurants in Moscow and is apparently a sister restaurant of the Italian restaurant Forte dei Marmi. The restaurant is supposed to feel like a Tuscan estate with a terrace and a fountain in the patio where you can also eat during the summer. I personally really liked the décor and the feel inside, as it felt casual and easy going but at the same time quite smart and sophisticated, and I always think this is a pleasant thing to achieve with restaurant décor and very few restaurants succeed. The main chef is Massimo Ferrari (who worked at Al Bersagliere in Italy that at one point had a Michelin star) and he serves Tuscan cuisine as well as other popular dishes from Italy in Bistrot, so just like in other restaurants in Moscow the menu is very long and has many things to chose from. 


We went to Bistrot for dinner on a Thursday evening and when we arrived at 6.45 only a few tables were occupied. I ordered a “carpaccio with rucola and parmesan” as my starter, my friend D ordered “fried squid with artichokes” and our friend Olga chose a “salad with beans and tomatoes and avocado”. I had mixed feelings about my carpaccio. I liked the size of it, the plate was impressive and large, and I liked how the meat was very thinly cut, super impressively thin actually and I have not been to many places that cut the meat so impressively thinly, but at the same time it was extremely cold when it arrived and it seemed like it had just been taken out of a fridge and put on the plate and so the taste was not great, it was actually lacking in beef taste and it tasted like nothing. I thought there was also too much rucola and in the end I left some of the rucola uneaten. D’s starter of squid and artichokes was interesting as I have not seen this combination done like this before so that made me quite interested and it was served nice and warm. For the main course my friend Zoli chose a “truffle risotto”, I chose a “pasta with duck ragu”, D chose a “pasta with pig cheeks” and Olga went for the “Risotto with champagne and scampi”. I tried some of Zoltan’s risotto and whilst it was tasty and really tasted like truffles it could have benefitted from a tiny bit more cooking as the rice was a bit hard, too al dente. Olga’s risotto was impressive served with half of a prawn, which you could not eat and was purely for decoration purposes. My duck ragu pasta was interesting, the pasta (like many of the pastas on the menu) was home made and you could feel it as it was soft and tasty and whilst it was interesting to eat it with duck, as you don’t usually get offered this type of combination in restaurants I can’t say I enjoyed it very much. D’s pasta was tastier the pig cheeks were very tender and delicious and the pasta was interestingly shaped in these huge round and long chunks and full of flavour. 


Bistrot makes a good attempt at creating delicious and upscale Italian food, but as I explained in some instances the execution does let them down. I personally also did not like the length of the menu, seems like they are trying to do too much and offer too many things (the menu features soft shell crab, lobster, all sorts of other fish that you can have in all sorts of ways), but a lot of these features can be attributed to many Russian restaurants. 


Date: 21/03/13

Location: Moscow


Maija rated: 



Bolshoy Savvinsky per., 12, str. 2
Bistrot Reviewed by Hungry Bee Maija on . Rating: 3