Dad’s Dollar Diary #3: Le Cordon Bleu French Fare at a Fair Price

DearLeCordonBleuLogo Diary,

I took my kids out to lunch yesterday. We were hemming and hawing over our usual lunch spots. Natalie wanted to go to Chipotle, but Matthew didn’t want to go there. He said maybe Pieology, where you can customize your own pizza, but he just didn’t want Chipotle. So we were at an impasse. Then I said, “Why don’t we try something different?” and I suggested we go to Technique, a restaurant that the Le Cordon Bleu School uses as the last rotation for their student chefs in training. They both were excited since they are both little foodies. Decision made.

We drove to Technique and went into the Cafe side instead of the fancier dining room, which I think they have mostly just for dinner. They had a display case with all of the food on the menu so we pointed and ordered the food we wanted. Natalie picked the fish and chips, Matthew picked the pulled pork sandwich, and I chose the Salmon croque sandwich over the Reuben, my usual go-to sandwich.

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Salmon croque

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Fish and chips

We paid for it and went to sit down and the student-waiter promptly brought us some glasses of water. After about 10 minutes, the waiter brought Natalie’s fish and chips and my salmon croque. Of course, we had to take some pictures of our food first.

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Pulled pork dip

After a couple more minutes, Matthew said to us, “Hey, where’s my food?” I told him that this is a school restaurant where the students are training to be chefs, so you can’t expect everything to be perfect. The students are probably more focused on the food preparation and plate presentation rather than the business side, so they aren’t timing the food to come out at the same time. That’s why all of our dishes are pretty cheap–only $8 a pop. Well that distracted him for a little bit, but he still wanted to take a few bites of my sandwich. But Matthew’s pulled pork dip finally came out.

We each tried a little bite of the other’s and decided my salmon croque was the best item but they were all good. Then Matthew said, “Hey we should write a Yelp review (check out our review).” I said, “Yeah, that’s a good idea. What would guys write for your review?” So we each took turns telling our reviews.

Natalie: It was good. The fish and batter were very well done. The fries were a little salty.

Matthew: The quality for the price was really, really good (I told them that’s what their Uncle Andy calls a ‘price-performer’.). The pork and onions were well caramelized and the dip was well-flavored. The food was really good, but they need to time the meal better.

Me: The sandwich was terrific with roasted tomatoes and a remoulade sauce. The fries were overly salty. But I was in it for the sandwich and that was great. Good quality food; can’t beat the price. It was clean, but there is no real ambience. Service was OK; they are students learning to be chefs, not waiters.

After we finished up, I said, “Let’s go try out some of their desserts. They’re only a buck a piece.” So we got a cookie, scone and a cheese Danish. For a buck, they were all pretty good. French food is always pricey. Au contraire, mon frère.

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