Friday, June 7, 2013

Mon Ami Gabi Food Review

Prime Burger with Egg

It's been a year or so, since I last visited Mon Ami Gabi in Bethesda Row (shame on me for waiting so long!) I swear by their delectable Steak Sandwich, but it was high time to finally try their Prime Burger, and tell you about it. How'd it go? Mon Ami Gabi not only makes the best burger in Bethesda (by a mile) they're the best restaurant in town too.

Ideally located on Woodmont Avenue at Bethesda Row (across the street from Barnes Noble, and next door to the Landmark theatres) Mon Ami Gabi is no stranger to full houses. That's no accident, as the food and service are without equal in downtown Bethesda. I like to eat near the bar in front... There's traffic at the door of course, but otherwise it's a more peaceful spot to dine. As I stated earlier, I came in to try one of their burgers (normally $9.95 with Gabi's hand-cut fries) but for a dollar more, you can take that same burger to another level by adding a fried egg. Done. Let the joy begin.

Within seconds of sitting down, I was served still water (complete with full bottle for refills.) The hosts and servers don't miss a thing here. Less than a minute later, my super-efficient server (Said) stopped by to take my order and offer me bread. The bread here is killer, but what's even more amazing is the size and presentation. A minute or two passed by, before another server brought a bagged 3/4 sized baguette... still warm from the oven (with garlic butter.) Am I in Paris or what?

Signature Hand-Cut Fries

Diet Cokes are refilled without asking (and before I've finished my first one.) Everything's first rate... on every visit. Keep in mind, this is a chain restaurant (albeit a small one... five nationwide locations.) My burger arrived in spectacular fashion (even the plates look delicious.) My burger was huge, cooked perfectly (MEDIUM, as requested) and topped with fresh, colorful toppings and the aforementioned fried egg, which bled bright yellow yolk with each bite. Fries are to die for; but if I had to complain, I'd argue that they're hard to handle. Hand-cut means small, and using a fork is a near impossibility. This means dipping into the container to get each and every remaining fry: You didn't think I was going to leave one undevoured, did you?

Pressed for time, I had to rush things along; but Said didn't skip a beat, keeping ahead of me every step of the way. Including a $5.27 tip (he deserved more, shame on me again) my entire bill came to 20 bucks. Said even offered, "Do you want to take the rest of the bread with you?" I did, but I wanted to give myself more motivation to return sooner this time. How does next week work for you?

Atmosphere: A- (It's a little busy, but perfect otherwise.)
Burger: A (Abundant and Juicy... one of my favorite combinations)
Fries: B+ (Hard to eat... literally, but scrumptious.)
Service: A+ (I used to treat myself to dinner at Prime Rib in their heyday, and Mon Ami Gabi could be better.)
Value: A+ ($20 for all this? I spent that at Loeb's NY Deli the other day: Guess who's better?)
Overall: A+ (Best burger and restaurant in Bethesda.)