O'Brien's Bistro

If you haven't tried out O'Brien's Bistro in Pensacola, you're truly missing out on some great cuisine. It's one of the few places in Pensacola that's owned and operated by the chef.  Located on Bayou Boulevard next to Cordova Square, it's a tucked way gem.

I discovered this place years ago when I still lived in Pensacola.  I typically go during lunch and on Sundays for brunch. The menu may have changed over the years but some of my favorites still remain. One of which are these little muffins they give you to start the meal.  When I first had them, I swear they taste just like some stove top "stuffing" baked in little muffin tins.  They still do taste the same to me today. I love to split one of these open and spread butter on it.  I never can get enough.  My friends and I can go through several baskets of these muffins, no problem.  I like the crunchiness of the outside and then the softness of the inside.

On the weekends, O'Brien's serve a similar corn muffin.  Still very delicious.

Since I'm talking about my favorites here, I can't not mention the "trio of salad" option.  For $9.95, you can choose from a list of 8 salads.  I always get the same three; grilled mushroom salad, shrimp salad and chicken salad.  Sounds so simple, right? But they're not.

The mushroom salad is laced with a blue cheese vinaigrette then topped with Parmesan cheese.  The chicken is poached chicken with onions, celery and cilantro mayonnaise.  The shrimp salad is mixed with onions, celery and a creamy dill sauce.  I've tried to make all three at home and it just doesn't turn out the same.  I like to eat all these salads with those delicious little muffins.  Quite satisfying.

You can find one of my favorite entrees only on the lunch menu. Crawfish and andouille sausage.  It's a huge plate of bowtie pasta with andouille sausage and crawfish. O'Brien's doesn't skimp either. There has to be a piece of sausage or crawfish for every other piece of pasta. The sauce is definitely not just milk and cheese.  There seem to be some tomato in it for color.  It's also spicy. Nothing that can make the dish intolerable though.  I'm assuming the sausage is cooked off first and all of it, including the spicy fat, is dumped into the pasta making the sauce spicy and lends more flavor. One thing I find amusing about this place is no matter what the entree is there is always a little vegetable medley on the side.

On the lunch menu, there are a couple of options for ways to enjoy your chicken of veal.  The choices are Marsala, Parmesan, Piccata or Delmonico. While I think the first two is pretty familiar, it's the latter two perk my interest.  Chicken or Veal Piccata is simply the meat lightly breaded, then fried. It's tossed in a lemon butter sauce with capers and mushrooms.  The Chicken or Veal Delmonico is basically the same except this time there's artichoke hearts, mushrooms and lemony cream sauce.  I've had all but the Parmesan version and I have to say it's pretty delicious.  The entree is served over some pasta and that little vegetable medley on the side.

I try to make it into O'Brien's once every few months for lunch or brunch.  I have been here once for dinner.  Dinner was a bit on the expensive side.  Nothing on the menu was below $16 and the selection was not all that impressive. Although the meal was good, I thought the offerings for lunch were a much better deal.  I consistently get good service and good quality food for lunch every time.

The restaurant doesn't have a webpage, but I do have a menu.  I'll try to add that at a later date.
O'Brien's Bistro on Urbanspoon


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