Bistro Rollin in Pelham: Hudson Valley Restaurant Week 2011


Hi, everyone, I’m Jessica Cohn. I’d been hearing about Bistro Rollin and meaning to go there. But this well-recommended restaurant is a “ways” from home, and I get tired of driving, doing, and even thinking too much; so it never happened. That is, until last night.

And thank goodness. It’s a find. My Restaurant Week partner and I went late, when the patrons were unhurried and dinner was winding down. The mussels were gone. But no matter. We savored the celery root puree and munched on the duck and pig croquette, swirled in the sauce Gribiche and vinaigrette. Unfortunately, the first course photos didn’t come out well enough.

But picture the main dishes offered, including this comforting coq au vin. The chicken was melded with mushrooms and bacon and poured over egg noodles.

I love it when a meal makes me feel as though it’s the cooking from childhood, despite a world of differences. Our favorite was the baked trout in red wine reduction – with its perfect buttons of fingerling potatoes and baby brussel sprouts.

For dessert, there was hazelnut cake with Bistro Rollin’s own coffee ice cream, a taste I was hankering again for breakfast this morning.

My partner had the bitty cream puffs with warm chocolate sauce and almonds. Perfect size for stealing.

A nice duck confit and pan-roasted skate were also offered, but we had to choose! Of course, I can picture myself back there for lunch today, for the frisée salad, steamed mussels, and maybe the coconut cardamon rice pudding. Dreaming on . . .

Bistro Rollin is on Pelham’s Fifth Avenue, with an arch of twinkly lights at the entrance. Driving home last night, trying to avoid the crazies on the Saw Mill, I tried composing a post in my mind. I wanted to tell you that the dishes were very satisfying. Generous in spirit. As was the host. Our charming waiter kept calling me “m’lady “. . . which was fun. The atmosphere is elevated by a mash of serious and whimsical art. I loved the dark wood panels on the wall. The small rooms. The perfect acoustics and lighting.

Bistro Rollin is – what’s the word? – civilized. Worth the drive.

The 411 on Bistro Rollin.



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  1. Phyllis Cohn on

    We went to Bistro Rollin on Wednesday evening too and had an awful experience.
    As we entered Bistro Rollin, we literally bumped into the manager who had to leave in order to get wine (from the cellar?). He asked a waiter to seat us.
    The manager returned shortly thereafter and took our order for drinks and food. My husband received his wine, but I didn’t get my diet soda. I flagged down a waiter and asked for the diet soda. Once I tasted it, I realized it was flat, so once again I flagged down the same waiter. He said that the machine wasn’t working, so I ordered a white wine.
    We kept on seeing orders of mussels coming out and we were anxious to get our orders of mussels. In fact, we wanted to order a side order of french fries but the waiter said that they came with the mussels. We didn’t see others eating mussels and fries, but we took him at his word.
    So we waited and waited, while others who had ordered after us enjoyed their food. After waiting 45 minutes (from the time we ordered), we asked to see the manager. Apparently, he had forgotten to put in the order because he was busy being the host, going to the wine cellar to get wine, taking orders, and running around like a “deer in headlights.”
    He did say to us, “things could not be helped” and merely walked away to get coats and jackets. At this point, we got up and left.
    We were terribly disappointed at this experience. We had expected a lovely evening, but instead we watched the waiters and bus boys running
    around as if they were in a Parisian train station at rush hour.
    I light of the fact that it was Restaurant Week, I would think that the owners Barbara and/or Arthur would be there; neither were there.
    Incidentally, my husband has owned a business in Pelham for over 27 years and we often dine in the area.

  2. Thanks, Jessica for a lovely review of our restaurant! We are delighted that you enjoyed dining with us. You captured the spirit we work very hard for every day. Have great fun continuing your reviews over these two weeks!

    Barbara, Arthur and Paul Bratone – Proprietors
    Manny Lozano – Executive Chef

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