New Bistro Bar Concept at Courtyard Marriott

It’s T here taking over for Makeda on her Travel Tuesday series.  I’ve been getting a bit more involved on her blog as she redesigns and re-brands it into a lifestyle destination for glam girls who love fashion, food, decor and travel.   I’ll be popping in on occasion to give my two cents on food, travel and relationships.  Do let me know if there are any topics you would like to see from me. Today’s post is about a recent press preview we attended for the Courtyard Marriott’s new Bistro Bar.

I travel quiet a bit for work, often being gone for three to four days at a time domestically and a week to two weeks internationally.  After a long day of meetings and conference calls, all I crave is relaxation in the form of a good drink and a good meal.  The Bistro Bar at the Courtyard is the answer to my prayers. There’s no more need to dauntingly research local restaurants, especially since I normally finish work around 8pm, and sometimes as late as midnight, or hop in taxi to get descent food and a drink.

Let’s start with the drinks! The new Bistro Bar concept perfected the old fashioned.  They paid enough attention to the classic way of making an old fashioned (the key is in the bitters) by crafting their own cherry and Angostura  bitters. The result is a well balanced, flavorful, strong yet delicious drink. At the opening, I was pleased to see the second standard cocktail on the menu was a South Side. Gin, simple syrup, bitters and mint.  Seems easy but often times hard to execute.  The Bistro Bar aced it.

The mission here is to get access to a great bar to relax and take a load off after a long day of business travel.  Now, time to eat and avoid (with all due respect) the late night room service.

The food menu at the new Courtyard Bistro Bar concept is nothing original, however, it comprises of traditional favorites that pack a flavor punch.  We sampled the meatballs that reflected the authenticity of a scene of Good Fellas. Pure tomato sauce, premium ground beef and a secret blend of Italian spices. I literally stopped talking as soon as I had the first bite melting in my mouth.

The other surprising dish was the chicken pot pie. Small tasting servings for the event, but I’ll admit I indulged by sampling five of them.  Guests will also have a choice of a pizza bar and of course salads for those looking for healthier fare.  The grilled cheese and tomato soup was also worth writing home about. If you ask me if I will I consider staying at a Courtyard with the new bistro concept? My answer is absolutely yes.

No need to spend time looking on my phone for a late drink and snack joint. Press “lobby” in the elevator and get top notch treats. I foresee the concept as a great way to socialize too. “Good evening person seating next to me absorbed by the flow of information on your work iPhone. Tell me about what you do and what are you doing in town while we enjoy food bites and spot on drinks”.

The point is it’s comforting to have access to a good quality meal that’s more bistro than hotel food. I’m all for discovering local food, but when I only have an hour to relax, I’d rather have easily accessible menu options that feel more like a treat with craft cocktails.




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