Monday, February 16, 2009

Salut Bar Américain

Visited on Saturday, February 7th with Jake and Allison


Outside Salut


Erin's Review
Salut is one of those places on our list that has come up a number of times, but we always ending up choosing somewhere else that seemed more exciting. We finally decided to go there last Saturday with Jake and Allison. I've always heard good things about the place, and it seemed like the kind of restaurant that is a crowd pleasing place, with something for everyone.


After perusing the menu online, I decided before even getting there to go with one of the sandwiches since they were much cheaper than the entrees. I have had the Croque Madame at Vincent a few times before, but not for several years, so I decided to go with that. I was glad to have already chosen my entree before getting there, because we had to wait awhile before being seated and I was starving.


Inside Salut

(one of two dining areas)


While deciding on drinks, I was hoping that others would want to split a bottle of wine because there were some reasonable choices, unfortunately I was the lone wine drinker of the night. I love how Salut has cheap, acceptable, and good options for their house wines :) I chose the acceptable option and it was just fine with me! They brought out a small appetizer of roasted garlic crostini (I think - if they described this I don't recall) which was much needed due to the aforementioned hunger. I loved the bread that we got - it was warm and crusty and delicious. They also were fine with bringing us more when someone asked for it which was great!

Menu

Little Thingie

Our food came out relatively quickly based on how busy the restaurant was, and my Croque Madame was wonderful. The egg wasn't overdone and the ham and cheese had wonderful flavor. I got the fries with it, which I thought were pretty good, but when you hear over and over again that something is AMAZING, it's hard not to be a little let down. They were good but don't go in expecting too much :)


Croque Madame


I really liked Salut, and I would go back if someone else wanted to go, but wouldn't choose it on my own. I really like smaller, more intimate restaurants, and Salut felt really huge and impersonal. The food is solid and the service was good though, so I would not hesitate to recommend Salut to anyone.


Ketchup

so clever.

Ben's Review

We were going out with our friends Jake and Allison and since we had been going to Thai and sushi places the last couple times we've been out with them, Jake requested somewhere NOT Thai or sushi :) We decided on Salut on Grand Ave. in Saint Paul, even though they had been to the Minneapolis location before. I was excited because I had heard that their fries are fantastic, so I was looking forward to a good burger and fries.


We had reservations for 7:30 and we got there right on time. Salut has an enormous dining area when you combine the dining room and the abundance of bar seating that is available. In spite of all the space it was still completely full, we had to wait about ten minutes to get our table because people were not leaving quickly enough. I would guess there were about four other parties who were also waiting to be seated, it would appear Salut has been unaffected by the economy so far.


Inside Salut

(waiting at the bar for our reservation)


We were seated in the back corner of the dining room which was nice as it was pretty loud in the restaurant and this way we could actually hold a conversation without yelling. Unfortunately, the foursome at the next table DID feel the need to yell and laugh obnoxiously the entire time we were there. They MIGHT have been drinking to excess, I couldn't be sure :)


I ordered a gin and tonic foregoing my usual beer. I wasn't in the mood for a beer and the cocktail was really good, it came in a large low ball glass and it was strong enough for my liking. After looking over the menu a bit I went with my initial choice of cheeseburger and fries (royale with cheese). By this time we were starving and the bread that was brought out was promptly devoured, they brought out two whole baguettes so we all got plenty.


Bread


Jake and I both got the cheeseburgers and they didn't disappoint. They were huge, with cheddar and thick, chewy bacon. It was a good thing we were hungry, between the burgers, fries, and bread it was quite the meal. The fries were not as good as I had been hoping they would be. It seemed that the fries had been sitting under a heat lamp for a little bit, which is understandable, and if they had been hot from the fryer I bet they would have been much better.


Le Cheeseburger Royale


While we were there, we probably saw six people getting the birthday treatment of a big-ass cupcake with candles, etc. Salut seems to be a popular place for birthdays, at least on that night. The cupcake was big enough to share with the whole table so I can see why it would keep people coming back, it looked delicious.


We got out of there spending around $45, not too bad for dinner, a drink, tax, and tip.


Outside Salut


  • Service: Our server was really friendly and helpful, it was busy but I didn't feel neglected.
  • Food: Excellent burgers and the fries have potential, I might have to try again for happy hour someday.
  • Drinks: My cocktail was strong, like I like them. I also hear the martinis are good.
  • Ambiance: This is very much a loud, humming restaurant when it's busy - in a good way. It was loud without being overwhelming.
  • Price: Not bad prices, especially for the portion sizes, you won't be hungry.
  • Convenience: Parking on Grand Ave. can be a headache, but as long as you are prepared to walk a block or two it's not that bad.

Deets

Salut Bar Américain
917 Grand Avenue
St. Paul

7 comments:

Liz said...

I agree that it's good, but large and impersonal. We loved their patio last summer.

If you haven't gotten the Parasol frequent dining card yet, you should consider it, depending on how many more Parasol restaurants are on your list.

Phyllie said...

i love your blog! it makes me so hungry and gives me good ideas where to take out of town guests :)

HungryinSW said...

I' m mixed on Salut. I think the burgers abd the Croque Madame are pretty good, but haven't enjoyed anything I've ordered beyond that realm. It seems a bit too large/industrial for me. It's a good place for B-days and large groups - the sort of place I try to avoid.

Anonymous said...

The hanger steak frites are awesome.

Brelleva said...

Hi,

Please email me. It's about your blog.

thanks
brian

Ben said...

Brian - you can contact us via email at: wegotservedinmn at gmail

Sarah Reigstad said...

I love Salut! The patio really is the place to be on Grand Ave on a summer's evening. My favorites: Cheese pizza, Cobb Salad, Any and all of their fish has been quite pleasing. Lastly, it is impossible to eat there without trying their Red Velvet Cake. It's amazing.