We ended up at one of the area's best restaurant's - Cafe Des Artistes. We have had dinner here several times and it never disappoints. The chef consistently serves up fresh, quality, classic dishes with just the right amount of butter and heaviness that you expect from a good French restaurant. The ambiance is exactly what you want it to be; dark lighting, kitschy decorations, and friendly staff and the location couldn't be any better - right in Leonardtown square in a perfectly East Coast brick, historic building.
This visit, we intended to grab a couple cocktails at the bar to make up for our bust of a festival day. The bar here is really cute and comfortable with plenty of room for multiple guests to enjoy drinks and dishes. Once the bartender informed us that they had Hendricks gin, we quickly ordered a couple gin and tonics. Any bar that serves Hendricks gets an extra point in my book; gin and tonics made with it just cannot be beat on a warm Spring/Summer day.
After enjoying our drinks for a few minutes, we decided to grab an appetizer because...well why not? The only complaint from this visit was that the bartender disappeared for a pretty long time in between handing us our menus and coming back to take our order. We were there at an odd time of day so he was probably doing some daily tasks that took him away from the bar, but in my mind, if you have paying customers in the restaurant, pay them attention while they're there. A woman walking around who I would guess is the owner noticed our wait and had a waitress grab the bartender and he took our order right away after that. I appreciated this; there's nothing like an owner or manager that stays on top of things and takes care of customers before they get irritated and angry.
This restaurant always has unique specials on its menu and today we ordered a special of venison and hazelnut terrine. The texture of the terrine was perfect; not rubbery, not too thick, just perfect for slicing and eating on the warm baguette they provided.
Overall, it was another perfectly pleasant and delicious visit to Cafe Des Artistes. If you've never been, add it to your schedule soon! It's a perfect place for a date night or just a quick drink at the bar. If you're coming for dinner, make sure to make reservations; they book up quickly.
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