Richmond >Can Can Brasserie
Can Can is gorgeous and always packed. I would recommend any Richmonder to visit once, however, after that I would probably not revisit. The menu leaves much to be desired. The food is very average considering the prices; although, the desserts are fantastic. You can make reservations to avoid the crowd.
Personally, I prefer Bistro 27 on Boulevard if you're looking for French cuisine. The decor is very similar to that of Can Can (although Can Can is really spectacular). The menu is more expansive, the food is better, and the prices are much more reasonable.
More hype than hospitality.
We have eaten at Can-Can in the past and had good (if pricey) meals but our most recent visit may be our last. Our food was of only fair quality - my steak was no better than I could buy myself at Martin's (for much less) and the service was distinctly average... all this for only $100!
The icing on the cake however is the arrogance of a management that never even bothered to respond to our letter of complaint. I guess people are lining up to pay top dollar for gristle steak and dull service - like P.T. Barnum told us long ago!
charming coffee place.
I love the atmosphere in Can Can. Drinking coffee and munching on a muffin, I am transported back to Paris. The floors and walls are exquisite and the bathrooms gorgeous.
The food I have had has been very good.
Horrible!. This used to be our 'go-to' restaurant for good food. We went for lunch and dinner. Last Friday night, I left hungry and furious. My husband and I were there to celebrate a new job. The cheese plate was good, the bread? Straight from the refrigerator! Not a deal breaker, but the butter and cheese were room temp and really good. I chose the roasted snapper $23 with apple spaetzle, roasted cauliflower, pine nuts and a golden raisin emulsion. The snapper was about a 4-5 oz piece that was beautifully cooked with crispy skin, placed on a very large platter with 2 swirls of emulsion. I waited for the spaetzle to arrive and then realized there was something beneath the fish. No more than 2 tablespoons of golden raisins, miniature cauliflowerettes and one (1) piece of spaetzle. I asked the waiter if I could pay for another side of spaetzle and he went to the kitchen. Returned saying they only had a limited supply to which I responded, "I know! There is none on my plate." He said, 'sorry' and turned to leave...offering nothing in it's place! My husband chose the mussels which were nice sized, but they had been cooked to the point that the flesh was the size of my pinky fingernail and all the 3 cups of juice in the bottom of the bowl! The prawns in curry sauce were horrible! Underseasoned and mealy around the head. Like when they are not so fresh anymore, $100 down the drain in possibly the worst meal I've had in Richmond. Now I know why the last review was in 2008!
French cuisine for the American palate. If I was going to sum it up with one thought, I would call the food at Can Can a "Ruby Tuesday" version of French cuisine. I was satisfied and content with the food, but I was certainly not blown away by it. As a newfound "foodie" I was excited about eating at Can Can but in the end I was somewhat disappointed. Although, I have to agree with other reviews that the hostess staff was a little pretentious. I also overheard them gawk and sneer some of the people outside of the restaurant. My server was a great young man named John. I peered over the menu and could not decide on the wild boar or the braised lamb. After talking it over with John, I decided on the wild boar and added the beef tartar as an appetizer. The appetizer came out of the kitchen quickly, which surprised me, but heck it was raw beef! It was well prepared and presented in a mound with herbed crostini. My only complaint being the shallots overpowered the beef taste and it was best without the crostini. Next, the wild boar was also presented plainly on a bed of vegetables; I paired it with a glass of Syrah. The first few bites were juicy, but there were portions of the boar that were firm and tough to cut/chew. The flavor of the boar was a little gamey and I happily expected it to be. Although, the flavors were not an excitement of the palate, they were presented plainly for the American taste. After the two courses I was pleasantly full and decided to continue my adventure with dessert. After talking it over with John I decided on the chocolate souffle. The presentation was simple, yet plain. I would typically appreciate that type of presentation, but not when the flavors are simple too. The souffle was tasteful and it was accompanied with ice cream. The ice cream was placed atop a chocolate cookie that was very hard and tough to cut. I assumed the melting ice cream would soften the cookie, but it never came to that. I gave it four stars for its average American-French taste. THANKS JOHN!!
Good food, Rude Host Staff. My husband and I used to come here every Sunday for lunch but we had to stop because the experience turned out to be too much of an aggravation. It's too bad because we love the food...the frites, the chicken crepes, the croque madame... Unfortunately, the host staff is extremely rude and act like they are doing you a favor by even looking at you when you walk in the door. Once we were seated close to the desk and overheard the hostesses making insulting remarks about other customers. Honestly, for the price I expect to be treated pleasantly and with respect.
I had a really great evening - great food, great waiter, great atmosphere.. I too am puzzled to see negative reviews for this restaurant. I've been twice so far - January and October 2007. The first time was frankly one of the best dining experiences ever, thanks mainly to the excellent food, but also to the waiter, a young man in his early twenties who fulfilled the three main requirements of any server: (a) he knew about everything on the menu (b) he managed to convey the impression that we had his undivided attention without crowding us and (c) combined humour with good manners and professionalism. And when I thanked him for helping us to have a really nice evening, he accepted gracefully and was clearly pleased to have helped us. But back to the food. It was excellent - one of those meals you just don't want to end. Shrimp starter and sea bass entree if I recall. Just delicious. And the chocolate mousse was delicious too. The atmosphere is very - well, atmospheric, due to the dramatic lighting and high ceiling. I went again on the strength of that first experience, and even though they'd taken the sea bass off the menu, it was just as good (not such a great evening for me personally because I was alone, however). I'd recommend it - in fact I'm just going there again right now (March 08)
Excellent Continental French Cusine.
Having enjoyed Can Can five times now, I can only say Wow! I live in Seattle and would gladly export a Can Can back home with me. It doesn't matter if it's breakfast (wonderful Croque Madame, especially the presentaiton with the egg on top), lunch with either a soup or salad or the dinner selections which always include a fish I am pleased with. The quality and service have always been tip top.
Besides the food, the wine and beer selection is excellent as is the ambiance.
Many fine experiences at Can Can..
I was surprised to see all the negative reviews of Can Can here, because my experiences at Can Can have been positive. My first experience at Can Can was for dinner early in 2007: the food was enjoyable, and our waiter was fine, if a little on the stuffy side. I have since then dined numerous times for lunch and have yet to experience a server who was anything but friendly, helpful, and a pleasure to deal with. All of these meals were with a variety of servers from May - December of 2007. My food has always been enjoyable, other than one mishap with an egg creme soda(something was not quite right, and they brought a new one immediately which was fine), and I say this as someone with experience in cooking much of the French food on Can Can's menu. That said, do not expect to find all the wonderful bits of French Brasserie cuisine here; the menu has been watered down to those items the American palate will find appealing. Disappointing for foodies, but commercially viable.
The prices at Can Can are to be expected. I would not go there myself for dinner, as anyone with some skill in the kitchen could cook twice as much food for half the price in the case of much of the menu; their $22 Onglet is such an example. Can Can's lunches are fairly priced though, and well worth the cost for an enjoyable meal in a beautiful atmosphere.
The restaurant is recommended, and despite my positive experiences with Can Can's servers, I am not attempting to say the other reviews are inaccurate, I only hope they were one time events for the sake of the restaurant.
I have to say Cancan is one of Richmond's most over rated next to Mamazu. I went Sunday night and was shocked and bewildered by how rude the host was. When I asked to speak to the manager, he smugly replied he was the only manager on duty.
I hoped the food would be better than the service (or lack of). Unfortunately, Can can simply serves up pretension.
My dining companion ordered the french onion soup, which was as authentic as one would imagine a french onion soup from Mcdonalds to be. There was no crust to the cheese, rather it floated hopelessly in a puddle of grease on top of the onion mass. The butternut squash soup was all cream (a style of cooking I formerly thought was the proprietary domaine of the Olive Garden) and the braised pork was tasteless and fatty. The menu reads well, but the dishes just dont deliver. They are simply struggling to be something they are not.
Save your money and take a trip to Paris. You'd be better off dining at a cheap burger joint; at least you wouldnt deal with the pseudo-french attitude (remember folks, you are in richmond working in a strip mall) and you may get an honest meal.
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