Metro Organic Bistro Has Gone to the Dog!

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Well, actually it's the other way around: the dog went to the Metro Organic Bistro. And this, ladies and gentleman, marked a first in his just-past-the-puppy-stage life.

Heretofore, the only restaurants where my darling dining doggie has accompanied me have been in the vain of sit-down, fast food variety. Woofing a Big Mac down in the car with a slobbering, hungry-eyed pooch in the passenger seat is no fun.

So, when I found out the Metro was not a chain and not fast food, but was Fido-friendly, I just had to check it out. And, natch, I took the little rascal with me. I'd tell you his name but we were both incognito so as to do a true review.

As we first stepped foot-- and paw-- into the covered patio area, the beeping horns and grinding gears of the street seemed to instantly melt away. Can you say, "Ahhhh"? The decor, all vanilla's and chrome against a backdrop of green foliage, was simple and elegant. Likewise, the white, cloth-covered outdoor tables sported real glass dishware and silverware. Uh oh. Toto, we're not in McDonald's anymore.

Our server appeared quickly Two thumbs up for both him and the menu, which proved quite extensive. If your idea of organic is granola and yogurt, or lettuce and sprouts done a dozen different ways, you'll be pleasantly surprised by Metro Organic Bistro's offerings. There's seared ahi, a garlicky pork T-bone, and steak -- grass fed, of course.

There are also some delicious-sounding vegetarian options that don't-- shock shock!-- include tofu. The ratatouille description made my stomach -- ahem -- growl, as did the grilled vegetable platter with mint yogurt dunking sauce.

Sandwich platters and entrees are priced from $12.95 up into the low-to-mid 20s, which seemed shockingly reasonable considering the huge mark-up food vendors normally apply to organics.

Both of us being meat eaters, I opted for the filet mignon burger and asked the server if I could swap the fries for grilled asparagus. She didn't even flinch. As I'm sure you know, some restaurants either discourage, or outright forbid, substitutions. And the swap cost me a measly three bucks, $4 less than the side item price. Brownie points!

Though service was quick, the food was prepared with excellence; the grilled asparagus had just the right crunch and the meat was appropriately under seasoned and chargrilled, allowing its natural flavor to shine. Even the bun was exquisite with its crispy crusted outside, and tender chewy inside.

The doggie dined on a sample of everything including, oddly enough, an asparagus tip, all of which he gobbled down and then begged for more. I took that to mean four paws up.

The one slip-up was under-cooking my burger. Instead of medium-rare it was definitely done rare. I didn't order dessert. Unfortunately, I didn't know if the pup's good behavior would last long enough to enjoy the chocolate bouchon a la mode, a choclate-filled chocolate cake topped with ice cream. And so I passed. Sigh.

But I'll have another chance when I return, as I'm sure I'll be going back. Only I'm packing Milk Bones next time around, because the food here is just too good to share, even with woman's best friend.

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