Dinner at your French Grandma's house. This is an amazing little restaurant. The souffles are exceptional and freshly and lovingly made by 80+ year old Jacqueline. It is too bad that so many reviewers lack the sophistication and dining prowess to differentiate a fine meal like this with a taco truck and a Pabst Blue Ribbon. It is a special restaurant experience for adults that can sit and enjoy wine, conversation and food that is exceptionally made. If you don't have time for a grown-up dinner, this place isn't for you.
My favorite QUIET place for souffles.
A slow, leisurely meal where reservations are mandatory here if you want to be assured a seating. Located next door to Savoy Tivoli, middle of the block in a non-descript storefront with no menu on display. Expect to stay 2.5-3hrs to fully experience the food and have a conversation and HEAR the people you are dining with. There are 8 tables for 2 and 3 tables for 4 (that's the crowded area) and one table for 6. Because it takes so long to cook and eat the souffles, I saw the waiters turn away folks w/o reservations.
I started off with a lovely French red wine and tasted the onion soup (still salty), butter lettuce & red bell pepper soup du jour - all good. The crunchy, delicious, hot out-of-the oven French bread reminded me of the ones in Paris. The lobster souffle had chunks of lobster but not enough according to my spouse. I thought the savory souffles were saltier than I remembered. Our favorite was the brie & broccoli souffle but nothing compared to the organic strawberry (specials of the day - including morel mushroom & truffle souffles) for dessert, a tad too sweet at the bottom. It was all easily shared by 4. I concur w/an old saying, "Kings wait for souffles, souffles do not wait for kings." The dk curly hair waiter can be gruff, but he was courteous to his customers. The silver-haired waiter is the friendlier one but neither will engage in extended conversations w/the customers. Souffles here are on the "runny" side than "pudding" side but so much better than the overcooked ones which have the consistency of a cake rather than souffle. Chef Jacqueline is a petite, mature woman now. She has 2 helpers in the tiny kitchen area and you can see her when passing by to the outside restroom. I was told she's enjoying herself too much to be thinking of retirement, and I hope not for many more years. I have never left unhappy after dining at Cafe Jacqueline and will miss her souffles when she does retire one day.
Absolutely Fabulous. OK- This place may not have all of the fancy decor of a 5 star restaurant but I got over that very quickly when our food arrived. First let me say this is a great place when you want a romantic spot and you want to hear the words of your dining mate. Our waitress was quite friendly and made some wonderful recommendations. . I would recommend getting one souffle if there are just two of you dining because they are big enough to share. Plus they offer a bread basket prior to your souffle arriving to your table. Also no one will look at you in disgust if you decide to eat right from the serving dish rather than your plate. We also had their lemon souffle for dessert. As a professed chocoholic, I must say this was quite sumptuous and severely curved any cravings of chocolate I had. Sorry for those of you who had the rude waiter. Our waitress/ souffle efficianado was nothing but wonderful. I don't regret going here at all and I plan on going again! Oh and one last thing. We took a cab there. When it was time for us to go, a waiter went and got one for us. I do mean that literally. He went out into the street and about 10 minutes later a cab arrived with him in it. He got out and held the door open for us, told our driver the name of our hotel and off we went. Talk about service!
Worst service ever, be prepared.
I would echo Danielle L's thoughts. The service is just abominable. Let me recount my experience for your reference.
My first time to Cafe Jacqueline was about 2 years ago. The decor was less than spectular, but it was a charming little house structure with tall ceilings. Romantic and intimate in an old-fashioned sense.
The food that time was good. I remember the souffles were good, but I was not in awe with them. There're lots of great restaurants like La Folie and Gary Danko in the city where they also serve excellent souffles. Of course they also come with different price tags for an entire meal, of course, but cafe Jacqueline is certainly no bargain. I remember walking away feeling pretty good about the place. Not spectular in any sense, but good.
This time the experience was different. We arrived early at the restaurant. We had made a reservation at 8:30 pm for desserts, but our dinner ended early at night, so when we got to Cafe Jacqueline, it was about 8:10 pm. What I'm going to tell you about the subsequent experience will be *shocking*.
The waiter (most likely the same waiter as Danielle L. spoke about, since this kind of rude service is very hard to find) came to us at the door, and asked for our reservation. We told him we arrived early and he told us there wouldn't be a table available until 8:30 pm, which is completely understandable. He then tried to convince us to cancel our reservation and go elsewhere. Yes! He told us to go elsewhere, because we arrived 20 minutes earlier than our reservation. He didn't ask us to take a walk and come back in 20 minutes (it was freezing cold outside) for our reservation. He told us to cancel the reservation to go elsewhere. He then tried to physically gesture us towards the door.
Bottomline, worst service ever. The waiter kicked us out the door simply because we were 20 minutes earlier than our reservation.
Expectations met - NO!!!.
Expectations met - NO!!!
1 - Rude server 2 - Over priced 3 - Souffle not cooked properly - still wet
This suffices for my rating... I don't need to elaborate more!!!
Amazing food, ambiance, make sure you're not in a rush.. I don't know how anyone could not write a positive review about this place. I took my girlfriend there on a Friday night and it was one of the best dining experiences of my life. The homey atmosphere adds to the uniqueness of Cafe Jacqueline. The waiters were kind and witty and made excellent recommendations when asked for their opinion. Sure it takes a long time to cook, but trust me - order a nice French wine and take your time and enjoy everything about this place. I recommend the broccoli and garlic souffle. It is unlike anything you've ever tasted. You also can't go without a dessert souffle. I recommend the lemon souffle to cap off your meal. It was perfectly cooked and much different than a chocolate souffle. To really make the night special, order a glass of champagne to accompany your dessert. I highly recommend this place to anyone who wants a nice relaxing meal.
Bad Service...Undercooked Souffle. I had heard about Restaurant Jacqueline for awhile and was excited to try the "delicious" souffles. We went in for dessert at about 9:15 . We quickly ordered our souffle and told our waiter we would order drinks in a moment so he could get it started (we were warned it would take 40 minutes). The server never came back to take our drink order and it wasn't until we literally had to flag him down that we finally ordered drinks. My friend tried to order an expresso ,which was listed on the menu ,and the waiter said rudely that they had no expresso only regular or decaf coffee and walked away! Maybe the expresso machine was broken...but he never said so...and a few minutes later we could hear something that sounded like steam coming from an expresso machine. We got our drinks and about 25 or 30 minutes later got our souffle. We started eating the souffle and noticed that the giant souffle was not cooked all of the way through. My friend very politely flagged down the server and said that the souffle appeared to be slightly undercooked. The server said "that is a perfect souffle" and walked off again! All of us are in the restaurant business and work in very high end fine dining restaurants...so needless to say this was not the first souffle we have every had. Bottom line is the souffle was undercooked (it actually made me sick) and the service was HORRIFIC! Being that I am in the business I rarely complain and have never written a negative review....but under these circumstances I thought everyone should know what kind of experience they are in for. Do yourself a favor....don't go here!
I'm a repeat customer for sure.
Love the romantic atmosphere, or the leisurely meal you can have with girlfriends.
Never go when you are in a rush... Souffle's take a while, but way worth the wait and
truly amazing! My favorite dessert has been the LEMON... oh my goodness... even tho
I'm a choc lover... that one was decadent...
The waiters come across serious, but they aren't... Loosen them up, and you'll have a
great time... Highly recommend the onion soup also...
Have reservations again on Sat... can't wait....
Go say Hi to Jacqueline, her tiny kitchen is a sight to see... she does MAGIC in there...
Best Souffle!!!!. The souffle is spectacular. The ingredients in each souffle are top-notch and the flavros blend wonderfully together. Each souffle is made to order so you should expect to wait for your souffle. A meal at Cafe Jacqueline may last 3 hours, but the souffles are well worth the wait.
Wow, This is the first restaurant that made me sign up and share my opinion with others. I love to eat out and explore new restaurants. I love Souffle which why I went to Cafe Jacqueline. Service was not that bad as other reviews said but the waiting time for the food was EXTREMELY LONG!!! We the only one of the other two tables in the restaurant at 7.30pm on Thu night. It was taking us 45 mins to get appertizer! Food was fine but not worth the time that you have to wait and a little overpriced! ($30-50 for airy Souffle)
It is good for the dates because they don't usually go mainly for the food, they have plenty of time to wait..for something that does not have to be fantastic!!!!! I love the restaurant's idea but I don't think this is the way you do a good business.
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