Tustin >Food & Dining > Black Sheep Bistro
303 El Camino Real, Tustin, CA | Directions 9278033.742973 -117.823644
Resting on its laurels, unimpressive – A bit about me and my reviewing style: I eat out at least 7 meals a week, and I consider myself a bit of a foodie. I enjoy all ethnic, continental, and domestic types of food and don't discriminate based on a cooking style I might not enjoy. I review the food for exactly what it is. Price does not affect my decision unless it's a poor value.
A lot of people talk about the price of BSB as being too expensive. I will confirm that it is pricey (average $50 per person + drinks), but I don't think it's "too expensive" for what they are trying to pull off. The problem is that it's simply not executed well.
The decor was boring and did not look like it had been updated since 1994. The seats were hardwood without padding - NOT comfortable and inviting as they should be.
I found the dishes to be average at best.
The complimentary olives and bread are ho-hum and entirely uninspiring.
The goat cheese appetizer was unique, but I would not say it knocked my socks off. Flavor was acceptable but not great.
House salad was tasty. Very acceptable, but not extraordinary. Caesar salad was a total bust. It claims to have the chef's special recipe dressing, but it was lame lame lame.
Wife had Pato Mio (duck). She enjoyed it but said it was not her favorite duck ever. She gave her dish a 4 out of 5. I don't eat duck, so I can't rate it.
I had Borrego Borrego Borrego, one of the most famous dishes the restaurant offers. The chop was smaller than usual, a bit on the fatty side, and very underseasoned. The loin was certainly leaner and had marginally better flavor, but still underseasoned. The stew was by far the best thing on the plate, but I would still only give the stew a 3 out of 5. The other 2 preparations were 2 out of 5. Also, I ordered it cooked medium and it came out medium-well.
We tried to redeem the meal with the chef's special dessert "La Fantasie". We received a chocolate gateau, a berry tart, and their version of creme brulee.
The gateau was OK, and the sauce surrounding it was great. The creme brulee was also great. However the berry tart was NOT acceptable. The crust was rock hard and had no flavor, it hardly tasted home-made. The berries and cream inside were tart and unsweetened at all. Hardly what I would consider a dessert.
For being a lamb-centric restaurant that is highly Zagat rated, I was sorely disappointed with the lamb. I have had better lamb almost everywhere else I've had it.
I so desperately tried to find ways to save this review, as I really appreciate husband-wife restaurant teams. Alas, I must come to the conclusion that BSB is past its prime and does not deserve to be counted among OC's best establishments anymore.
A word to the chef: there's nothing wrong with putting a little extra flavor in the food!
A word to the servers: don't be so stiff. It's OK to be personable and get to know your table.
A word to the wife/host: smile every once in awhile and show some emotion. You looked upset, which does not put customers at ease.
Great to Worse – I've been to BBBistro twice. Fell in love the first time, but was brutally disappointed the second.
First impression was great. Cozy and elegant atmosphere. Great waiter. The food fabulous. The duck was amazing and the lamb was by far the best i've had and many times over better than Turner's. Also, the paella was perfect. I went home and raved about it for months wanting to go back.
Couple months later went back and had a waiter drop a glass of sangria over me. But no apology from the manangement. The lamb was dry and the paella was under cooked. I was embarrased for bring more friends.
Charming, charming, charming! – I have wanted to go to Black Sheep Bistro for a long time, and found that it was worth the wait. Everyone is so friendly, including the chef, who pops in and out of the kitchen occasionally to greet the diners. Food was exceptional, service was doting and overall we had such a pleasant experience we can't wait to go back! We thought the prices were reasonable for what you get, and the ambience is very French country. Definitely recommend for romantic dates, special occasions and group dining!
For lamb lover. – Excellence creative lamb dishes. I have the "four season" lamb dish with four pieces lamb in four difference sauces. It's good but too expensive...$40!!!
Come on....$40?? I know it's good, but I think it's way too expensive for four small pieces of lambs.
Service is very attentive and very slow pace. It's good to bring first time date, as there's no rush in this dining expriences. The decoration is simple but cozy.
Good place to eat for your expensive nights out. – I highly recommend the Borrego (3 different styles of lamb) and the sausage appetizer. The restuarant is small and quiet, leading to very personal service which is nice. It was a nice, somewhat expensive treat for myself and a few close friends to celebrate our birthdays. Definately worth eating here atleast once!
At last – an elegant, non-chain restaurant in Orange County where the food is delicious, the service friendly, and the atmosphere relaxing. I'm sorry to read the last review of this place. I took my boyfriend for his birthday and we had the MOST delightful dinner. Our server was friendly and knowledgeable. We started with two tapas, little spanish sausages served with garlic mashed potatoes and grilled shrimp served with three sauces. Delicious! My boyfriend had the special, lamb prepared three ways. I don't eat lamb but the presentation was lovely... I barely heard a peep out of him as he devoured his entree. I had paella, which was good. We finished with some profiteroles, also very tasty. The chef came out and chatted with everyone in the room, including us, and thanked us for coming in. We'll definitely go back.
the service wasn't worth the price – Upon arrival the hostess showed no warm gracious attitude...just asked name and sat us. NO warm welcome.....and the waiter was short and made an error and tried to get out of it by lying. It has no class...and it's more like a glorifed coffee shop...over priced for the service you recieve.
The only positve thing we saw...was the chef...he was very pleasant.
French, Spanish and Italian influences collide to create a plethora of flavorful and filling dishes at this hidden Tustin gem. – The Scene
Tucked away in Old Towne Tustin, this country-style bistro is truly a destination location. The cozy and welcoming interior ensures a quiet, romantic evening. Rustic patio seating is available on warm nights. Friendly and attentive servers provide excellent service without hoveing. If nothing on the menu looks just right, ask chef/owner Rick Boufford for something special--he is happy to accommodate.
Lamb is the superstar on the menu, which prominently features many a meat dish. The garlicky escargot and sausage plate are great starters. The borrego (lamb three ways) cassoulet (white bean based stew) and four-seasons lamb chops are prepared to perfection. Saffron-laced paella comes with generous portions of fresh shrimp and mussels, and the mushroom risotto is decadent and creamy. Try the dark chocolate mousse or fresh berries with ice cream for dessert.
Great Eating Experience – Like stepping into a great Swiss or Spanish Restaurant where everything is done to perfection. Family owned and run, all personnel trained in the excellence of serving. The food is incredible, the wines wonderful and I've never left there not full and never dissatisfied. Pricey, yes, but such a unique dining experience, well worth the cost.
Try it yourself – We came back from Paris not too long ago, we went to Black Sheep Bistro on 3-13-04 Saturday night for dinner, the food was wonderful. So if you still want something from Paris, give a try Black Sheep Bistro, see want do you think.
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