Food was basic. The greens tasted like vinegar and sugar mixed together. The mac n cheese and fried chicken was okay. Unfortunately, there is a distinct odor that lingers. I won't be back.
I don't know where to start, but from the moment I walked into this restaurant, I had good vibes. I was recommended this restaurant by a very gifted and talented chef, so I knew it MUST be good and had to try it.
It's located in downtown Hayward, conveniently right next to a (free) parking lot. Upon entering, there was a dj to the left playing a variety of hits - some r&b, hip hop; it was a Monday night and so cool and such a surprise to see an actual dj there! The left side of the restaurant is more of a bar/lounge, whereas the right side has tables and booths for dining in. We ended up sitting on the restaurant side.
We started off with some drinks per the waitress' recommendation. I ordered the Rose of Sharon ($11) which consisted of hibiscus infused vodka, lime, la pinta liqueur, and mint. This was so refreshing; not too strong and could really taste the hibiscus flavor. Would definitely get this again when I come back.
The menu is large but not overwhelming. Tons of choices to choose from that all make my mouth water - braised beef short ribs, low country shrimp & grits, bourbon street burger, and grilled cajun spiced king salmon to name a few. I couldn't decide what to get, but I ended up ordering the Blue Crab & Delta Shrimp Ravioli ($19) and of course the Smoked Gouda Mac' N Cheese ($9) - if there is mac n cheese on the menu, believe me, I'm ordering it. The ravioli was to die for; plated beautifully, everything was definitely "instagram-worthy." The sauce was a cajun lobster sauce and this is hands down the best crab ravioli I've had, and I've had a lot. The perfect ratio to sauce and ravioli, I didn't feel neither one overpowered the other. I could actually taste the crab with every bite. The mac n cheese was done RIGHT (not that there's a wrong way to do mac n cheese, but this one was just delicious). The portion was decent sized; I even took some home. Baked, nice and creamy, and loved the rich taste of the smoked gouda.
The service here was exceptional. Everybody that we encountered was so friendly and made sure we had everything we needed. The owner, Michael, came to us throughout our meal to make sure we were ok and told us about some things he was planning on doing with the restaurant in the future (this restaurant has almost been here for a year!). I am so excited for the things he has planned, and can't wait to return with my family. People like Michael are the reason why I love supporting small businesses and to see the passion he had for this restaurant and his patrons was awesome! Keep up the good work and I believe this restaurant will be around for a very long time.
AMAZING!!!! This spot stole the soul out of the south and stuck it into a cute modern upbeat location. This was worth the 30 miles drive. The melt in your mouth cornbread, the tender and juicy pork chops.... the fragrantly fried chicken!!!!! The yams were the most amazing I've ever experienced. My husband and I only wished this place came with a warning that you need a hotel room for afterwards. Who can stay awake after such a shocking experience. Our server Davina was informative and a sweetheart. I suggest reservations. We walked in and straight to our table. Thank you for the experience.
Server was very rude. We had the special blueberry Cornbread it was dry nit much flavor. Fried green tomatoes also bland. Grits and shrimp where good. Will not be going back.
A friend and I went here for our girls' night out and were delighted with our experience. The owner himself waited on us and we felt like family by the time we left. The food was outstanding -- comfort food with a modern twist, presented beautifully. I'd like to see a few more vegetarian options on the menu. We will definitely be going back!
Not bad food. I had the shrimp and grits. I thought it had too much gravy and would rather most of the gravy be placed on the side so that it allows for me to dictate how much I would like to add to my food. The place needs a little more fine tuning, since I can't pinpoint what is missing at this time. We were the first customers to arrive and the door was locked, so that is a bit of a turn off considering they should have been opened. I will give them another try since the food is good for the most part. The short ribs and grits were a good meal as well. #gravyontheside
omfgeeee heka good!!! i had the grits and shrimp!! i swear i licked the plate! and this peach cobbler!! MAH GOODNEZZZZZ my husband had a burgerand he also said it was SCHMACKIN!!
Food and ambiance was great. The owner, Mike, was very nice and overall service was good. We will definitely come back!
I recently made a reservation for my family to dine here on Christmas Eve. They absolutely raved about it. That says a lot considering two of the family members sit on the board on the California State Fair and pick what restaurants, statewide are chosen/invited to participate in the Grape & Gourmet. Thank you for your great food and service. They brought a ToGo order of your short ribs for my son and he inhaled it. I must admit that it smelled Devine.
I really liked the food.
The service was nice from the host to the runners to the servers to the bus boys. Everyone was professional and I felt taken care of.
The food was really good. The short ribs and the chicken were both excellent, presented in a dynamic and appeasing way and had great flavors both in the main course and in the sides that accompanied them. The short ribs came with grits and the Chicken came with Mac and Cheese. Everything was done well and prices were reasonable. The portions were also generous and that always scores points with me. I was stuffed by the end of the meal.
Waters were filled regularly. There is a full bar available, but I did not partake. The interior is modern and there are TVs at the bar to watch sports.
I would definitely return.
We came here tonight with our 18 month and had an amazing experience. From the moment we walked in, service was great and we were seated promptly.
Ambiance is a bit dark and modern but nice. Very warm.
To start we had the cornbread which was blueberry tonight. So amazing, perfectly sweet but not too much!
Then we had the shrimp and grits, crab bisque, mac and cheese and catfish fingers. Every single dish was perfectly cooked and seasoned.
The standouts were the catfish fingers and mac and cheese. The catfish was not greasy, crispy but soft on the inside.
The thing I appreciated the most was that they were very nice to us even though my son was extremely fussy and annoying! I could tell one of the waiters was annoyed but he at least didn't say anything. We were mortified as it was so we rushed and ate fast so we could let others eat in peace.
We definitely be back on kid free date night to enjoy it more!
Came by for an early dinner and the dining room was practically empty. Strange I thought. But by the time we left, closer to 7pm, the dining room was approaching capacity, so good that people are responding to the good food here.
This time around I started with their Charleston Bisque ($9/cup/5*) as I've already tried their gumbo. This bisque was great. A super rich creamy broth that exudes that fine dining shellfish flavor. Drizzled with chive oil made it artful. Legit chunks of blue crab and crayfish tails laid on the bottom, perfectly tender and succulent. The cup is a little large for a pre-entre course, mostly due to how rich the soup is. They can easily knock back the size a bit and knock it down by a few bucks as well.
Pork Chop ($19/4*) Very nice thick chop. Perfectly cooked as it was juicy. Pork chop is a good barometer if a kitchen can actually cook, as it takes skill to pull it off successfully. Even though juicy, the chop was a bit hard to cut with the knives they provide, like a fancy butter-knife. Tangy cornichon jus was a nice touch as it provides acidity to cut some richness. Rustic mashed sweet potato was just ok, as it was spiced so it gave the impression of pumpkin pie filling. With meat I prefer it to be simpler, like just butter and let the sweet potato flavor burst through.
Crab/Shrimp Raviolis ($19/5*) Probably the best seafood ravioli I've ever had. So the sauce is real similar to their bisque, creamy and loaded with seafood essence. The pasta exterior was silky smooth and not doughy/chewy. Filled with luxurious lump crab meat so the filling wasn't spongey/ground like most raviolis. I may even start/split these on my next outing if it is available, I am that sold.
Peach Cobbler (4.5*) I tried this cuz the only other times I've had "cobblers" were at divey bbq/soul joints. There, they are usually excessively sweet and the dough is well "doughy". I wanted to see if they had a refined version out here.
Sure enough they did. Here it is more of a pot pie, where the crust is laid "on top" of a cup of warm fruit and baked. Traditional is when the crust dough is cooked into the syrup-y fruit so it more poached like dumplings.
So you break the crust to reveal the piping hot peach compote. Very natural peach flavor/texture with hints of slivered ginger (awesome touch) and cinnamon. Sugar level in the syrup was spot on for me.
As the crust breaks a massive ball of vanilla ice cream drops into the hot peach lava. I don't think I need to expound on how perfect that combination is. You know, I know you know.
So I'm so glad that they are maintaining the quality of food here. I'm glad that the community is responding. And most importantly I'm just glad to be a part of it all.
We randomly went here for my birthday after choosing the restaurant based on the menu posted at the door. The food was great and service was fast and friendly. The short ribs and grits were especially delicious! Definitely coming back!
Attended a friend's birthday dinner. The food was very flavorful and seasoned well. I had the pork chops with garnet mashed potatoes and broccoli.
This is "Pican Lite", not quite up to the old Pican/Oakland. Also, don't expect the remarkable bourbons; M. LeBlanc says the locals haven't been interested in them.
The current chef has a Carolina focus on Southern food, not the New Orleans-inspired cuisine of before. Dishes may sound the same but they are cooked differently.
Caesar needs work. Mature shredded romaine was half-wilted from sitting too long in an excess of dressing. Croutons were sloppily cut from mixed breads; some tasted of old oil. The commercial shreds of tasteless Parmesan should be dumped. Even one shaving of a good Parmesan would be better.
Fish Fingers fried in cornmeal (and I think cracker meal) were very good.
Fried Chicken.....uneven. Chef uses milk and vinegar to brine, and he overdid the vinegar on the breast meat. It tasted just like spoilt milk. The dark meat piece was better. Still, it's tender and juicy, with a light crust the way we like.
Gumbo had good flavor but skimpy with the main ingredients; mostly rice.
Key Lime Pie and Pecan Pie: both very sweet, drizzled with chocolate sauce. Coffee was good altho we had to remind waiter when he forgot to bring it.
Playt is okay, but we miss Pican and the New Orleans focus. And those bourbons!
I haven't been here since it was Bijou but I have to say I'm a big fan of the change. The food was great and also a good sized portion. We had the crab ravioli, pork chop with sweet potato mash, prawns, & key lime pie.
The place itself is really chill and we loved that they had the game on. It wasn't to loud and we could hear each other just fine even though the restaurant was nearly full.
The best part overall to me though was the service. Our waiter was very attentive and the owner himself, Micheal (I think?) , seated us & then towards the end of our meal he stopped by to check on us.
We ended up having a really wonderful conversation about him and his travels and he gave us some really great recommendations about things to do on our upcoming trip to Boston.