I’m not one of those people you’d usually find at grand openings for things. But when I heard The Whole Foods Market in Columbia, MD was finally opening its doors, I couldn’t resist…I tried, but somehow around lunch time, I found myself there. I came up with a clever way to trick Kevin into going with me. We had a morning meeting in Baltimore City and on our way home I “suggested” we go for an early lunch somewhere. We haven’t been to Iron Bridge Wine Company in Ellicott City, MD for some time so we thought we’d head there towards Howard County.

“…actually, Kevin…we haven’t had Petit Louis Bistro in a while either…mmm I could go for a Quiche Lorraine. A nice brunchy lunch. Doesn’t that sound good today? …And maybe if we have time we can quickly drive by Whole Foods and see if it’s really busy, I mean it’s just right by there…and if it’s not too busy maybe we could go in…OMG You know what? We’re out of Raisin Bran…” INCEPTION! I’m such a genius! 😉

Kevin hates going to the supermarket with me. He says its not normal for someone to be so excited about browsing the aisles of a supermarket. Oh Kevin, but it is! 😉 I especially love Irish supermarkets. They have so many fun snacks and chocolates that we don’t have here. Whenever we’re in Ireland, I ask Kevin a million times to stop by SuperQuinn, SuperValu, Tesco or the Ardkeen Shops. He’d always have to drive me around because well I’m terrified of driving over there. You see in Ireland, they drive in the other side of the car on the other side of the road. (Irish friends and family are probably reading this thinking…No my dear, you drive in the other side of the car on the other side of the road. HAHA.) In all my years visiting Kevin and his family in Ireland, I’ve never gotten behind the wheel. Ok, that’s a lie. Kevin tried to get me to drive once and I completely freaked out! There’s too much space to the left of me, there should only be a door! HAHA. I think after all these years with me, he’s just supermarket-ed out! So Thanks a bunch for going with me on opening day! 😀

I didn’t take any photos of The Whole Foods Market. I’m sure people will be writing about it or posting photos on facebook in the coming days. I was kind of overwhelmed with the crowds and all the action going on inside. I’ll probably give it some time to calm down a bit and then go back again. Definitely had a different vibe to the tranquil waterfront we experienced at lunch.

Anyway, back to what I really wanted to share with you today – Petit Louis Bistro on the Columbia Waterfront. I’m a huge Foreman Wolf fan. I love Cinghiale (My favorite restaurant in Baltimore.), Charleston (I dine here when I’m feeling fancy pants.), Pazo (Great spot for large parties. I heard their menu has changed from Mediterranean tapas to Southern Italian fare, must go back soon and check it out.), and of course Petit Louis Bistro. Kevin and I met in Paris, so every year on our anniversary, we go out to Petit Louis Bistro in Roland Park, MD for a lovely French-y meal. We’ve been to the Columbia location a few times for pastries and coffee at Le Comptoir and on one or two occasions for dinner. This was our first time there for lunch. What a treat!

petit louis bistrot

It really was the perfect day for outdoor dining, so we asked to be seated outside.

plb menu

Le Menu. They offer a 2-course menu (Formule Petite Faim) for $19 and 3-course menu (Formule Grande Faim) for $27. We weren’t too hungry so we ordered one dish each a la carte. My favorite menu items for dinner are – Frisee aux Lardons, Truite Almondine and Champignons du jour. Perfect meal! When you order the champignons, the server will bring it out and have you take in all the mushroomy aromas before plating it for you. Yum!

drinks on table

On a normal lunch date out I wouldn’t hesitate to order a glass of wine. But I had planned to go to the gym afterwards so I opted for a French press coffee instead. I love how they give you a sand timer for the french press. After our first visit to Le Comptoir, I went home and ordered the sand timer online HAHA.

quiche lorraine

Pour moi, Quiche Lorraine. Delicious! It was light and fluffy and satiny smooth.

croque monsieur

Kevin had the Croque Monsieur avec Pomme Frites. I grabbed some frites when Kevin wasn’t looking. 😉 It’s served with ketchup and Dijon mustard. Frites and mustard are so good together!

le comptoir

I added in this photo of coffee and pastries we had on our first visit to Le Comptoir on Valentine’s Day. Le Comptoir is the casual counter service part of the restaurant. And by the way, those eclairs in the photo were delicious. The last time I popped in for a coffee-to-go was in May. I was looking forward to tasting the chocolate hazelnut coffee eclair again but they didn’t have any in the dessert case. Was a little bummed, but no worries. They offer loads of pastries, cookies and desserts. And I hear all their desserts are delicious, right HowChow?! 🙂

If you haven’t tried Petit Louis Bistro yet, bump it up to the top of your list. You can meet friends over coffee and pastries at Le Comptoir, go for an aperitif after work in the bar, have a lovely lunch outside or a romantic dinner for two at night. Petit Louis Bistro offers great food and service with beautiful views of Lake Kittamaqundi. AND you can always stop by the new Whole Foods Market when you’re finished, just a short walk along the lake. Let me know about your experiences at Petit Louis Bistro and any recommendations on your favorite dishes in the comments section below.

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