Antibes Bistro is one of many tiny restaurants in a crowded stretch of 1st Ave. Everything about the restaurant makes it a standout, and well worth patronizing. It's small, decorated simply and elegantly, with good jazz, interesting art on the walls, and -- most importantly -- superb food at decent prices. Their signature appetizer is a duck pate served on poached pear slices with a blood-orange sauce and a balsamic reduction. The combination of flavors and textures was a treat, and set the standard for the other dishes that followed. The salad dressing was balanced exactly, and there was enough to coat the mesculun perfectly. The fried artichokes on the salad added sweetness as a counterpoint to the acidity in the dressing. The grilled Tiger Shrimp were done just right, too.
The main courses we had -- lamb, short ribs, and Steak frites -- all showcased high quality meat prepared thoughtfully to bring out the individual quality of the meats: the mustard sauce with the steak, and the Guiness in which the ribs were cooked, are different from the usual. The lamb shank was moist, and accompanied by couscous and a vegetable stew that suggested the wonderful flavors of Morocco. The potato gratin with the short ribs was rich, with the finest sliced potatoes I've seen yet.
The wines come from boutique vineyards, and for someone who normally doesn't like wines, I was surprised, and thrilled, with the Pinot Noir.
Finally, the desserts. We had the chocolate terrine with brown-sugar gelato, which you MUST have, and the Creme Brulee, simply the best I've ever eaten. It's creamy, with a delicate, natural vanilla to flavor it, and once you've had it, you'll agree it's the best. The owner, and the waitress, are personable, and offer superb service: they wait until all have finished a course before removing the plates. This is high quality dining service, which is almost impossible to find these days. Try it! You'll like it (I promise).
Pros: Food, prices, service
Cons: Parking, phone service a problem (Verizon's, not theirs)