Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Petit Bill's Bistro
Foods from Petit Bill's Bistro

2008 Jun 29
Went here on Friday night with our regular dinner companions. It was our first visit and we were not disappointed. This place is a real gem.

Reading the other reviews, I think they have improved markedly over the past year since they opened. The service was very friendly and attentive. The server mentioned that the menu had changed recently.

We had 2 baskets of bread - the first was a plain sliced French baguette with butter which was average. We asked for more later in the meal and were given a basket of herbed bread stuffed with cheese. When we asked the server what was in it he did not know for sure but stated that ALL the bread is from Art-is-in including the plain baguette. And we were not charged for it...I guess that puts the bread to rest.

For starters one had the Pan Seared Sea Scallops
(Pancetta squash risotto, bourbon maple glaze, baby tatsoi) which were excellent. 2 of us had the Heirloom Tomato Salad (Sliced heirloom tomatoes served with buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil and mixed greens topped with red wine vinegar, fleur de sel and fresh ground black pepper) which again was very good. It was about half sliced tomatoes/cheese and half the plate was the mixed greens. Another person had Nutty Greens (Crisp baby lettuces, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, seasonal accompaniments and house vinaigrette) which she stated was good but I did not try myself. My husband had the soup of the day - a roasted veg puree with a hint of cream. It was divine and extremely flavourful. I stole 2 sips because it was so good.

For mains I had the Gone Bamboo Chicken (Spicy jerk chicken served on two baked peach halves with a mango salad and a light couscous). It was good. It arrived in a deep bowl which made it a bit more challenging to eat but also was nice change from the standard plate. I could have used a slightly larger portion of chicken and more sauce. But then I was very full by the end also.

My husband and brother had the Smoked Bison Meat Reuben (Braised red cabbage, dijon grain mustard and emanthol swiss cheese served with hand cut fries). It was from the 'Petite Mains' but both had a hard time finishing it...there was nothing small about it. It was also fantastic. The fries were home made and dark browned. They were in our opinion the best we have ever had in Ottawa. On their own they were amazing. Once one started to eat the dinner they did need a bit of mayonnaise to dip which we asked for. I felt like I was back in Belgium. The rueben packed so much flavour and was very moist. Highly recommend it.

One other had the curry chicken and the fifth person had the stuffed pepper both of which they enjoyed.

We were so full that we only had room to share one dessert amongst the five of us. We had the cream pie. Perfect pastry, smooth custard, fresh cream...all I can say is yum! We finished off with espressos and capps. All good.

The wine is worth mentioning also. It is a reasonable selection and many that are not available at the LCBO. We had the Domaine Pochon Crozes-Hermitage (2005) Northern Rhone , France. It was only $50 and well worth the price. We even got an additional half liter serving. Turns out that you can get take out including the wine, as long as the bottle is opened there and then recorked. Now that is takeout.

This could become one of our new favorite restaurants..good quality, reasonable prices, good service.

2008 Apr 25
We were just browsing, checking out menus on a Saturday “brunch” kind of hour. The server at Petit Bill’s Bistro came out and greeted us and because we were looking for lunch, not breakfast, and he was so friendly we went on in. Lucky for us! No brunch menu here on a Saturday at about 1pm. Good for us but if its breakfast/brunch you’re looking for there are other spots for you.
My date had a bit of a cold and wanted some fairly light, healthy stuff. I had been eating pretty healthily lately and was looking for some of my favourite indulgences. We both found what was in order!
Speaking of indulgences—even though healthy food was on her list, it was the first of those early arrival warm days and we both decided people-watching and a drink were in order. We got a seat on the bar side beside the sidewallk (one small table from, out of direct sun—suggested by said friendly server!)
Glasses of iced water arrived while we were perusing the food/drinks menu. We decided on a rose—asked if Beringer White Zinfandel (2006) California was sweet/dry, etc. We each got to try a nice sized sample (about 1-1 ½ oz. sample) and decided it was for us. Even better, though not on the wine by the glass list (by the bottle), we were able to get ½ litre, (cost—just a little more than 2 glasses—nice touch!) I really liked having a little sample because even if I know a wine, I find its really nice to try a bit at the time—this was kind of like sitting at a café in Paris kind of atmosphere.
Mediocre baguette with butter came next--no charge. Didn't seem to be an issue...
So, person with cold ordered soup of day—broccoli. It happened to be ideal for someone with a cold. It appeared to be very fresh broccoli, chicken broth and not much else! She devoured it but I found it quite bland (definitely no cream or cheese). With the soup she ordered the Panko Goat Cheese Salad (greens, beets, apples, peppers and a yummy dressing of rooibos tea vinaigrette). Goat cheese fried in panko too rich for her but I took it home and enjoyed the next day with greens! Unfortunately no candied walnuts as described—they would have been a nice touch.
I indulged myself in burger & frites! Delicious…The frites were a touch brown (oil maybe not ideal…) but I hesitate to comment because they were fresh tasting and I devoured them all. The burger was incredibly moist, flavourful, delicious…The brie/gorgonzola cheese combo was perfectly flavoured and melted, mushrooms were sautéed and held up nicely in the bun—cooked to dry, the onion jam was delicious and the bun (maybe art-is-in potato rosemary ?) held up very well for such a moist, delicious concoction! I ate just over half and was stuffed; too messy to bring remains home. Messy = delicious!
Service was so great and friendly I would probably come back again even if the food stunk. I love burgers—this was better than any at The Works that I’ve personally experienced.
No room for dessert ot coffee.
*Said friendly, informative server was talking up a couple of passerbys and we recommended! Love that we could try the wine.
A few days later my friend informed me her Mom (who lives nearby at Island Park) wanted to have her 90th Birthday Celebration here—because the people were so kind and polite! Works for me.
I'll definitely be back--tho' bathrooms are downstairs and my 90 year old friend is mobile--her friends--hope so.

2008 Apr 18
Finally managed to make it here tonight. Side note - their one year anniversary is April 23rd!

Everything was very good. It reminded me of a casual Juniper. Great food, quick & friendly service, nice decor.

My friend had the bison and it was to die for.

We'll be back next time we want to have a nice date dinner without going "fine dining" - maybe on Tuesday tapas night.

2007 Dec 5
Since Petit Bill's opened in May, I have been at least 8 times and have loved it everytime. the pan-seared tenderloin is to die for. the maple scallops are delicious and the homemade desserts devine.
We live in the neighborhood and have dropped by for tapas a couple of times. the lamb chop is amazing and the fact you can get a half glass of wine is a real good idea as well.
I recommend anyone and everyone to try it.
The atmosphere is warm, the colours bright, the service good and the food great.
What more could one ask for?

2007 Nov 24
I went to this bistro Nov 23rd with four of my friends.
The atmosphere was pleasing and my first impressions were great. Our waitress was professional and attentive.

I tasted everything we ordered at the table so had a good sampling.
The baked camembert appetizer we enjoyed. My friend ordered the three dip sampler... unfortunately one dip was "slightly off" (I would describe it as rancid). They were nice enough to give us another dip but it was the feta dip (which we already had) so we actually only got to sample two dips. And yes, they charged us for it too. As for the of the best parts of the meal. They must have made an improvement

Of the five mains ordered, two were good-average. The other three were disappointing. They serve the same sides with each meal, I felt like I was in a cafeteria. I am used to restaurants of this caliber pairing their meat with a suitable side. It seems they took the easy (and lazy) way out. And this is fine...I see no problem with it...just not in a restaurant that gives the impression that it will go the extra mile.

I ordered the blackened steak..but they burnt the outside to a crisp. I sent it back but was told that is how you blacken a steak (It isn' tasted like charcoal, literally). When I asked for a new steak instead of giving me a blackened steak they gave me an entirely different cut and it was not seasoned at all, just plain grilled. I ordered the tenderloin and I got a fast-fry. One of the waiters tossed me a caramilk bar (Halloween size) for my trouble. I was charged for the steak.
The maple salmon was good. Curry chicken tasty but overcooked.

Apple pie served cold. Chocolate torte was a good ending. Overall, desserts not anything to write home about. Lifesavers as an after dinner mint.

Basically, the food was average (tastes like upscale bar food), and service was the pits (if something wasn't to your liking). I won't be back for sure and will be telling my friends not to waste their money.

2007 Sep 13
Went to Bill's on Tuesday night after discovering that the Wellington Gastropub was closed for a private party. It turned out that Tuesday is Bill's tapas night.

The place was mostly empty (it was early in the week and cold outside) but I really liked the decor inside. Very warm with a casual look that still left me feeling like it was thoughtfully decorated and well maintained.

Service was very prompt and friendly, but not overly formal.

We had a bottle of Chianti to accompany the meal and were very impressed, especially considering that it only cost $36.

While I don't have a great deal of experience with tapas, it seemed that Bill's menu of options was relatively small (around a dozen choices). If you're going to be eating several dishes during a meal, I assume that most people would want more selections to choose from. The other problem with the available dishes is that they vary between choices like a scallop in oil to a 'petit' hamburger. If you want to stick to foods that complement one another, you become very limited.

I had the scallop, squid, eggplant/red pepper tartar, duck confit 'spring roll' and the mini burger. My companion had the chorizo, belgian fries, hummus, and a couple of things I don't remember. The scallop, squid, and chorizo were all absolutely great. Perfectly cooked, with very nice sauces (when appropriate). The other items could all be classified as good...not great, not awful. The one exception was the hummus which was barely touched due to the overpowering amount of garlic in it.

All in all, it was a pleasant experience, but I would probably not return for the tapas night. I'm sure I'll be back at some point to try Bill's on a 'standard' meal night, but it's also not high on my priority list.

2007 Sep 13
from what I read, the only negative in the entire review is the bread,

I agree with the review, it is a great little restaurant

2007 Sep 12
I agree that it's odd, but when you really think about it isn't it even more odd that most restaurants don't charge you for bread? :)

The sad part is that the review said the bread wasn't even very good (although expecting Art-Is-In at a French bistro doesn't make sense because authentic French baguettes are nowhere near as good as Art-Is-In bread). Anyways, I'd happily pay a buck to have good bread with my meal.

2007 Sep 12
Hrm. The review mentions people have to pay for bread if they want any. That seems a bit odd. Anyone have any idea as to why that might be?

2007 Sep 11
Here is a review of the Bistro in the Ottawa Xpress on August 30th.

Newer · Older



2011 Jul 14
Absolutely love the lobster poutine! A great deal for the money and very tasty!

2010 Mar 15
My husband and i had a lunch today.
We heard about Petit Bill's has a reputation but food was disappointed.
I started with beets salad that it wasn't reasonable price, yellow beet was over over cooked and i paid $14.
We studied at Le cordon bleu, many friends recommended and they likes Lobster poutine.
It was soggy fries with broken sauce. I could taste any of Mascapone flavors. It was pretty gross.
I believe that ratings can be very deceptive.
But waitress was nice otherwise pricey and nothing special.

2009 Dec 23
What more can I say that other's haven't already said? Lobster, on mascarpone cheese sauce, on fries, with lobster butter drizzled over top. I put some fresh ground pepper on mine to add a bit of zing, the only thing that could make this dish better would be... some fresh shaved truffles!

2009 Jan 11
Lobster poutine: Chunks of lobster, broiled in butter with marscapone cheese sauce on top of delightly crispy yet tender shoestring fries. I first thought that the delicate flavour of the lobster would be overshadowed by the other flavours but boy was I wrong. This dish is amazing. Try it, that's all I can say.

Chowder 1


2009 Dec 23
They served Clocktower beer on draught here, a pale ale, apparently. I thought it was unusual to see their beer in an establishment other than their own, not necessarily an unwelcome addition! Very cool to see!

2015 Jul 10
My partner and I got a pair of Bill's Burgers on a recent visit, and we both thought it was outstanding-- near, if not at the top of our list of Ottawa burgers. Definitely beats out a couple more expensive options elsewhere in town.

Super friendly service and owner, too. Have to make a point to come here more often.