Dining Spotlight: Back Bistro; Polished with Pizzazz
Jun 28, 2018 05:15PM
Back Bistro, 230 Palladio Parkway, Suite 1201, Folsom, 916-986-9100, backbistro.com
Longtime Folsom favorite Back Bistro recently made the leap from its cozy, neighborhood location to the glitz and glamour of a 4,500-square-foot destination at the Palladio. Featuring an impressive craft cocktail bar that commands attention as soon as you enter, the restaurant also serves up the same quality fare that made loyal fans of its original customers—with a few new dishes and a boutique wine selection.
I started with the sautéed artichoke hearts, whose presentation was a bit of a surprise, as it’s served “bruschetta style”—topped with olives, fennel confit, capers, roasted garlic, and the namesake artichoke hearts over grilled French bread. The real plot twist, however, was the white wine cream sauce the sliced baguettes were perched atop—a very creative and tasty application, indeed.
Next came the warm arugula salad with pancetta, quinoa, red onions, toasted almonds, and shaved Parmesan. The balsamic dressing was applied sparingly (thank you), and the tasty, texture-rich toppings were the perfect pairing to the peppery baby arugula.
As I ordered “steak and potatoes,” the server asked if I wanted to “surf and turf” it. He barely got the words out of his mouth when I hit him with a resounding “yes!” The resulting plate featured grilled steak over fondant potatoes and garlic aioli with a skewered shrimp crowning each of the three brochettes. Not surprisingly, this is one of Back Bistro's most requested small plates, and if you’re just looking for a quick bite, there’s plenty of protein here to hold you over.
Between this and the other two starters, I was content, but all willpower went out the window when I saw the bistro’s version of shrimp and grits. Ever since ordering and falling in love with the dish at Luke in New Orleans, I’m tempted to try it everywhere. Whether it’s breakfast (with a poached egg), lunch, or dinner, I’m a devout fan, and Back’s entry hit the mark. The option here featured an Italian twist (creamy polenta in lieu of grits) but still boasted some of the NOLA traditions (andouille sausage and roasted tomatoes).
I’m sure I didn’t need dessert at this point, but when a menu offers “The Famous Triple Pot de Crème,” how can you not find out if it lives up to its nom de plume? After all, it’s French pudding…right? You’ll have to stop by Back Bistro and see for yourself (spoiler alert: My “pot” was spotless).
Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (Sunday-Tuesday), 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (Wednesday-Thursday), 11 a.m.-11 p.m. (Friday-Saturday)
Try This: Sautéed Artichoke Hearts, Warm Arugula Salad, Ahi Poke, Steak and Potatoes, Loaded Baked Potato Flatbread, Shrimp and Polenta, Vegan Fried Rice, Petaluma Chicken, Braised Short Ribs, Triple Pot de Crème
Drinks: Full bar; beer, wine, and cocktails
Heads-Up: Spacious patio; private events and restaurant buyouts available; daily Happy Hour from 4-6 p.m. and 10-11 p.m. (Friday-Saturday); vegetarian and vegan entrées; daily lunch menu from 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m.; extensive wine list; monthly, three-course prix fixe menu with optional wine pairings; craft cocktails include five types of “mules”