Jules offers a menu of hearty, unpretentious French bistro fare in a room straight from Le Marais. Kronenbourg 1664 on tap and a daily three-course table d’hôte for $26 make it as affordable as it is authentic.
This place is fun, great ambiance, typical of a noisy French bistro. Great prices for food! Come on, a prix fix menu with starter, entree and dessert for $21 for Vancouver is crazy. As we were famished we ventured off the prix fix menu and ordered ala carte instead. I had the prawn avocado salad which is amazing and I had the 8 oz steak + frites, it was a simple dish, minimal sauce but tasty and well aged steak and the crispy piping hot frites made a world of difference, ask for mayo dip! Other diners had their lobster and crab bisque, I had a taste and actually bit into pieces of lobster which is unheard of, wickedly delicious!! The service was prompt, attentive without being imposing. The atmosphere is what kept me enthralled, it was noisy, packed to the seams, every diner was having a great time. I cannot wait to return, this place rocks!
We were greeted warmly as we entered by the restaurant manager. We were offered water as soon as we sat down,I love how they sit down a jar of iced cold water for you. Our server told us about the specials of the evening however she seemed very timid. But the restaurant manager came back to see if we had questions and he introduced the dishes in a very informatively and delightful manner. The bread was warm, crispy on the outside crust, soft and delicious inside, adding butter was just the best part of it all, it was crunchy, and then soft and creamy all together. I really enjoyed the bread, it was one of the best bread I had. The appetizer special of the day was salmon and scallop carpaccio, both was really nicely done. This dish was light and perfect to start the meal off. They have a $25 special that included a mixed greens, salmon frites and dessert. The salad was yummy with bits of walnuts that gave it a nice touch, it was bits of my favorite; crunchy sugar coated crunchy walnuts with a light dressing that kept you wanting to eat more. The salmon frites was grilled to perfection with a touch of garlic, tomatoes and peas on top, all of which I ate and loved. I normally do not eat peas however they made it so good with the salmon that I really liked the peas with my salmon. The salmon came with a side of fries, best restaurant fries ever, super crunchy and fresh, it was perfect! The other entree was the beef tenderloin with a red wine sauce, ratatouille and scallop potatoes, it was so juicy and tender, great dish! To end the night, we got the Marquise au Chocolat, which is a creme au chocolate terrine with coffee cream sauce, it was absolutely amazing, I loved every bite of it, it was delicious! We were welcomed back as we exit the restaurant, not many restaurants makes this gesture anymore, it was very pleassant! Excellent service from the restaurant manager! I would definitely recommend Jules!
We went to this restaurant tonight for dinner. I had read some rave reviews about Jules and wanted to try it for myself. I knew ahead of time that I was probably going to order the prix fixe menu of salad, steak frites and chocolate terrine for $23.
Food: The food was okay. Previous reviews raved about the portions sizes...I didn't particularly find the portion sizes that big. Having said that, I realize that this is a French bistro after all. The salad was good, not great. The steak was on the small size, but cooked to medium rare like I had requested and I asked for the herbed butter with it. It came with french fries, which was a fairly large portion, but it's just potatoes after all. There was a tomato/garlic cheese garnish, which was the only vegetable to food on the plate...and that was quite good actually. The dessert was nothing special. Should have paid an extra $2 and upgraded it to creme brule. We had bread to start, which was probably the best thing about the meal....really crusty and chewy baguette with cold butter. And the price was $25, not $23 after all. Must have increased their prices.
Service: our server was quite attentive and friendly, without being obtrusive.
Ambiance: our reservation was at 5:30 pm, when dinner service started, so it was pretty dead when we got there. It's pretty nice inside, nothing to complain about. Famed music manager Bruce Allen came in and sat down at the table next to us with a group of 6 other people. Vancouver mayor Sam Sullivan was at Rosa's in Port Moody on a night that we went. We must attract all the celebs. ;-)
Value: The four of us had the prix fixe menu, with a bottle of red wine and 2 coffees and 1 tea and the bill came out to $151.98 after tax. I guess that is okay for gas town, but I definitely went away hungry. Wouldn't probably go back though for that price. I was okay, but I just felt it was too hyped and didn't deliver. I've had a prix fixe menu in New York about 3 years ago for $16 and the meal was way better than the one I had tonight.
We went to this restaurant because of all it's good reviews. It was early 5:00 p.m. and the restaurant was empty. And we get "Do you have a reservation?". I mean this place was empty. They gave us the worst table. So we move and are told we can't sit by the window because it is "reserved". They do seat us at a better table finally, but the restaurant stayed relatively empty and the "reserved" window tables were empty throughout our whole meal. This is a Bistro for heavens sake. Ditch the reservation book. First come first serve, and let people line up out the door.
The food was good, butithe experience put a damper on the evening.
Was here with a few friends.
Ambiance: Cozy, small. Quite noisy, but not noisy enough that we couldn't hear each other talk. Nice decor inside, but metal fences/construction going on outside took a bit away from the whole feel of the place.
Food: Very good! Started off with the Moules Frites - so tasty!! I used the bread to soak up the delicious white wine sauce. Had their special dinner of salad, steak & chocolate terrine, great deal. Only complaint was that the steak had quite a few chunks of fat throughout. Oh well, for $23 I guess you can't expect too much.
Service: I'd actually give it a 3.5, but that's not an option. Polite and professional, but not all that friendly. At times we had some difficulty understanding the staff because of their thick accents, but that's what gives the restaurant that authentic feel. Server cleared plates promptly, but didn't always pour our wine for us - no biggie. However, they did ask for our table back after 2.5 hours (no mention of this when reservation was made). This was surprising considering that we had ordered 2 bottles of wine, and our bill came to around $230 after taxes/tips. I guess since the place isn't too big, they don't like patrons to stay for more than 3 hours.
Worth going to at least once.
I can't count how many times I've been in the area and never noticed this wonderful little bistro. A spontaneous evening out found us at Jules. We arrived an hour before closing and were welcomed openly - they didn't pressure us to leave as they were closing, and let us finish in our own time. The live streaming of French radio was a nice touch.
We shared the octopus salad with shitake mushrooms - for my part, i enjoyed it, but would have prefered mushrooms that didn't come from a tin. For mains, we ordered the moules frites and lamb special - both were really well cooked, nice complementing flavours. The fries were so so, but the home made ketchup and mayo made up for the fries. Dessert was ok; not the biggest fan of dessert in general, but the flavours from the roasted pineapple were like a mini explosion in the mouth.
Service and the ambiance were second to none. Very attentive serveurs but not intrusive.
Jules is worth checking out!
Went there for my friend’s Thirty-third birthday dinner on Tuesday night. Made phone reservations with Hostess (Joy) and was greeted warmly at the door. But not before meeting owners Stephan (front of house) and Emanuel (Chef) at the entrance whilst on their breather break. They assured me the steaks are par excellence. I joked with them that the “real” French chefs are still in France but they’ve sent us their French trained dishwashers as a substitute!
We both ordered the three courses dinner from the carte du jour with the steaks done medium rare. One order with black pepper sauce and the other with mushroom sauce. The plate was trimmed with half a baked tomato Au gratin and plenty of frites. To start; the bread arrived at our table warmed with a small dish of unsalted butter and MMmmm. A mixed green salad with some sliced cherry tomatoes was served before our main course and a fruit crumble after. A couple of beers and Americano’s rounded up our meal. All this at a modest $54.00 plus tips and Taxes for two.
They did deliver the goods on the rib eye steaks (very tender) and the sauces were superb. The frits were crisp, clean with out any hint of oil, an added side dish of mayo and I finished every delicious frite, with my fingers (Bistro style).
I only have two minor distractions: The music was (?) and perhaps an injection of Bach would be nicer on my ears. And the restaurant was loud, LOUD but maybe that’s a la Style Bistro. Just be prepared to be boisterous and have some fun.
I’m looking forward to trying their pate and the Al-la-Carte items.
What you think of Jules probably depends on what you expect. If you expect fine dining, you'll be disappointed. But if you expect an above-average meal with great ambience at a reasonable price, that's exactly what you'll get.
My 2 friends really liked the lobster bisque, and their entrees were good, if a tad salty. I ordered the $21 steak and fries special (includes starter salad and dessert). The steak was ok, not the best, but the same steak alone probably would have cost me $25 at a chain restaurant.
The chocolate fondant was more cakey than you would normally expect, and when we told the waitress, she simply said it was overbaked. She didn't comp it or ask if we would like something else.
The lively french bistro atmosphere really is quite fabulous and unique for Vancouver. It's the perfect place to go with friends for a bottle of wine, mussels and a great baguette.
I believe that Gagnon has not been associated with this restaurant in some years.
I do however agree with you about some waiters and the front of house at this location. More than once we have have encounterd the rude, often flustered man matching your description who thinks he can do no wrong. When you start your dining experience so far down, it's really hard to make up.
Food is good enough, however, with a number of brasserie type restaurants around town you are better off to avoid this gentleman and enjoy better food elsewhere.
I've spent a decent amount of time in France and developed a real appreciation for 'bistro' food. Jules has the authentic dishes, my food was good but not as magical as what you can find in an authentic French bistro. Still, I would recommend Jules- it had a great atmosphere, and it was overall a positive experience.
*I've heard lots of great things about the lunch at Jules, but have yet to check it out for myself.
My first visit here was six months ago. I had the pate to start followed by mussels. The pate was not really the texture of a pate, and the mussels sauce not especially tasty. Then I went back and had the Alaska black cod and really did not like this. The fish itself was placed on a bed of very bitter vegetables - I forget what the menu said, either braised celery or endive... the bitterness overwhelmed everything, and the fish, obviously not smoked, was very much in need of a little salt. The side of scalloped potatoes was dry, the potatoes a little hard and the portion only enough for one (usually a la carte sides are enough for two to share). The creme brulee was very good though. And this place gets top marks for atmosphere - very European and no loud music like in so many Vancouver eateries. I would go back and try one more dish, but if that disappointed, then here is yet another Vancouver restaurant that has let me down.
Arrived on a busy Friday night. We had no reservations and despite there being a small group of people waiting at the door for a table, we were seated at two empty seats at the bar. Had a glass of wine while we waited.
We were seated 15 minutes after by the window. Our waitress was very professional and friendly. We ordered a bottle of bordeaux and she always poured our glasses before we had the chance.
To start we shared the country style pate with a blend of balsamic vinegar/caramelized onion on the side. The only thing that was strange was they brought out a plate of fresh bread with butter about 2-3 minutes before bringing out the pate. So we started to eat the bread, not realizing that it was probably for the pate. Because of this, we had more pate on our plate than bread (and who eats pate on its own?). We didn't bother asking for more bread because there was only a tiny chunk of pate left. In the big picture, no big deal.
Food was outstanding though. The filet the boeuf with morel cream sauce, ratatouille and scalloped potato was "très speciale" as they'd say in French - a signature dish that I would not hesitate to recommend to anybody. In fact, this is the second time I have eaten it, and I'm the type that likes to try new things - it was that good.
For dessert, the gateau de riz, essentially rice pudding cake with rhubarb compote, was decadent. Rich vanilla flavour with tangy sweet rhubarb. Definitely not old fashioned rice pudding, that's for sure!
Finally, the ambiance makes you feel like you're in France or in Montreal. "Less is more". The ceilings, window frames are painted a shiny black. The red brick walls are exposed. There's a beautiful extravagant chandelier adding style to the space. Mirrors on the walls extend the room, and maps of Paris and wine-producing regions in France add French character. So does the black board menus over the bar.
One of my favourite restaurants and a wonderful addition to Gastown's new identity.
I dropped in with my business associate here last night and what a pleasant surprise. Lovely selection of BC wines and quirky French wines at decent prices (6.95 to 8.95 a glass). Wonderful lobster and crab bisque to start followed by mustard rabbit leg. My associate had the thick country pate and the casoulett (very filling). The portions are huge for the price all under $21 for entrees. Service was very good with a mulitlingual server from Ottawa. Stephan the owner is charming and looked after us. Great place for dinner in Gastown. It's just around the corner from Salt. Have a drink at Salt then come here for a great dinner.
Returned to Bistro Chez Jules on my usual pilgrimage -- every time I come to Vancouver, which is about twice a year. As usual, the reservation process was friendly and easy, the welcome heartwarming, the food good enough to make me eat a bit more than I wanted too and the service fantastic enough to warrant a really good tip.
I am not the kind of person people recognize by name or even by face in restaurants or hotels, but I have always been treated here like royalty and taken care of as such. Whether I eat steak-frites done exactly as I like it or a more complex dish, everything is always perfect and fresh and the French fries are homemade and to die for. The wine selection is good and they do have decaf espresso. After all that, they even offer to get you a taxi. Really my kind of place.
Not cheap but well worth coming back to.
This place is awful. Stay away. Incredible overpriced in a bad location, terrible - rude and snob - attendants who will compete with each other to serve you but you may end up - like me - waiting and waiting for the drinks you ordered, and will have to order them again.
The steak with fries I asked clearly wasn't up to the price they charged. And talking about charging, double check your bill when you sign the credit card (they tried to charge 98 instead of 38... Like 3 isn't close to 9 in the keyboard, right).
Again, stay away from this terrible place, just like the owner apparently do (the only reasonable explanation for such a mess).
Having tried unsuccessfully to get a table at Les Faux Bourgeois yet again, I remember passing by this quaint Gastown Bistro on several occasions and looking through the window to the warmly lit interiors and small but glamorous bar. Last night some friends and I enjoyed a lovely meal at Jules Bistro and I felt compelled to comment here.
The escargot and tart appetizers were really terrific - flavorful ... full of bacon and butter and garlic - yum!
The duck confit and steak entrees were equally as delicious and nobody felt full or uncomfortable afterwards.
We enjoyed a nice bottle of Pinot Blanc for $38 .... these days, wine for under $40 is nice to see. Oh and most of the entrees were under $20 which is one of the reasons I always liked going to Les Faux Bourgeois.
The only unfortunate part was the flustered (owner?). I couldn't tell but he seemed like the owner. We were running about 10 minutes behind for our reservation and called the restaurant ahead of time to let them know. No one answered and when we had to wait for our table (which was no big deal; we sat at the bar), we mentioned calling but the flustered man made some big exasperated show of not ever being able to hear the phone and I found that all just a bit much. When the staff seem flustered and overworked, it stresses out the diners. So - if you're reading these reviews - please take note.
Otherwise, awesome! Look forward to going again!
Food: My boyfriend and I ordered escargot and bacon tarts for our appetizers. The bacon tart was delicious but the escargot was only alright. As a main, I had the pork chop and my boyfriend had the tenderloin. Both of which were cooked perfectly. I really enjoyed my meal :)
Service: I expected a little more. The servers seemed unorganized. We had the specials read to us twice and then there was a bit of confusion as to who was going to take our order. But they did what they needed to do. They got the food out, they took our plates..etc.
Value: It was worth it, but it's not the cheapest place to go.
Ambiance: Very small little place. It's cute, but a little crowded.
We had such an upsetting experience at Jules and I wouldn't want any other diner to have to go through this. We arrived at 830 on a Tuesday night; there were four of us and we wanted to have desert and wine. We waited for a bit and then were seated by the owner. A few minutes later, when he realized we were there for desert, he stormed up to the table and shouted at us and tried to humiliate us. He simply raised his voice and demanded to know why we did not inform him we only wanted dessert and how he was shocked that hadn't. He said he could have seated other people in our seats and wondered how four people could sit down only for dessert. Other diners looked on and we were shocked by his behaviour. We have been to Jules many times before and we have taken our friends there. We were embarrassed that our friends were treated like this at a place we had recommended and we were totally furious. The owner of the restaurant didn't even acknowledge the fact that we have been there so many times before. The food is good and the prices are decent but a man like this does not deserve the business. I have never written a bad review before...I've never even felt compelled to write a review before but I just felt that I needed to tell people what had happened.
My wife and I felt like French this night and decided on Jules. First impression of restaurant was a fantastic French feel and is a great place to bring a date for that Romantic French dinner. Hostess was nice enough to find us a table for two, despite not having a reservation. Waitress was not warm or welcoming in any way and took our orders in an orderly, almost robotic way. I decided on the "Set Dinner" which consisted of Green Salad, Steak with Fries and a chocolate dessert. My wife ordered the French Onion Soup. The salad was very nice and the Walnuts with the Vinaigrette gave it a very unique taste. From there the meal went downhill. The Steak was a thin cut, gristly steak with way too much Peppercorn. Reminds me of the typical steak you receive at a Pub with an inexperienced chef using the Peppercorn to cover the lacking taste of a poor cut of meat. My wife's French Onion Soup had Onions that were not stewed long enough and therefore still hard. The Chocolate dessert was satisfactory. I don't want to come down too hard on this restaurant,as there is hope, but I believe that the Owner needs to review cooking habits of this chef in order to improve future Diners' experiences.
I heard about Jules from two people: my sister (whose friend's father owns the restaurant) and a co-worker. Both parties said it was a hip bistro with awesome food and an urbane atmosphere. I concur!
First, I love the size of the restaurant. It is intimate yet it avoids the slightly cramped feeling of, say, Pied-a-Terre or Grub. The design is cool too: exposed brick wall, mod furniture and woodiness.
Second, the food was great. Not perfect, but great. Our table ordered the foie gras spinach salad, the escargots, the duck confit, the steak frites and the salmon provencal. My one criticism lies with the salad: the fois gras was raw and did not add much to the dish, and the greens were much too salty. Avoid this starter. Also, I have to disagree with Sandy...the portions are average in size.
Third, the desserts are outstanding. Fairly standard bistro desserts, but all well made, rich and flavourful.
I was totally satisfied with Jules and would definitely recommend it, but I don't have the desire to go back.