Au Midi Aptos Restaurant
Au Midi Restaurant & Bistro
7960 Soquel Dr # E,
Aptos, CA 95003-3945
|Ambiance||Cozy, Elegant, Intimate, Outdoor Dining, Quiet Conversation, Romantic|
|Cuisine||Continental, European, French|
|Dining Style||Fine Dining|
|Payment Accepted||Cash, Credit Cards|
|Santa Cruz Take Out||No|
Au Midi Aptos - Summary:
(from aumidi.com) - “Au Midi” does not try to be just a French restaurant. We strive to be a good, friendly and neighborly place where one can enjoy local produce prepared with uncompromising technique and then served in sophisticated surroundings.
From her youth, on the French Riviera, Tahiti and St. Bartelemy, Muriel has always worked in a restaurant. After a successful stint in New York and Connecticut where one of the restaurants for which she created the menu, was rated “Excellent” by the New York Times, Muriel and Michel decided to leave the cold of the North East and move to the warmth of Santa Cruz County.
For Muriel, cooking is more than a career; it is an ever-growing passion. Starting with a deep appreciation for the raw product and with unflinching attention to every detail, everything is done to create and present deceptively simple dishes. Open to every flavor, curious about new ideas, Muriel is constantly trying to refine her art. It is done with passion, deep knowledge and a humble attitude.
Of course the flavors of Provence are often present in the dishes she prepares, but it is no surprise that many of these are also found in our area. Olive oil, garlic and artichoke, plus much of the produce are grown on this lovely Central coast. Muriel’s other tempting culinary creations are simply the result of her affinity for good food, no matter whence comes!
With the husband greeting the customers and the wife feeding them, “Au Midi” is definitely a family restaurant. It is also a cosmopolitan place with a warm ambiance and a sunny soul!
Au Midi Aptos - Reviews:
Positive Au Midi Aptos Review:
This is a really difficult review for me. I enjoyed my meal, the service was very friendly and the presentation of the food was decorative and creative. It's a well managed restaurant. But while this restaurant has received superb reviews from the media, I just did not "love it". I "liked it". And I will return.
If I was allowed I would rate this about a 3.8 on a 5 point scale but I just could not give it a 4. That said, I will return (and possibly adjust the rating).
First - a description of the place. It's located in a mini strip mall adjacent to the Aptos Aptos Village Square shopping center (Safeway) whose neighbors include a carpet store, a tanning salon and the UPS Store. So, from the outside it's nothing that stands out. But the real estate has good Karma - it replaced the very successful Italian restaurant Al-Boccalino (the owner sold it I believe due to personal reasons). It seats about 40 people (10-12 tables) in a single open room so it can get noisy when crowded.
The menu is limited with about 7 appetizers (from $8 to $30) and an equal number of dinner entrees (from $19 -$30) and deserts. The wine list is unique offering about 5 reds and 5 whites - all glasses for $7 and all bottles for $25 - I thought this was a wonderful way to offer wines and they were well selected. The only complaint I had is that regardless of the wine ordered they were all served in a chablis / chardonnay glass.
Each of us in our party of 4 ordered a different entree and we all really liked our food - but did not "love it". But each of us said we'd return. By Aptos standards, this is a very good restaurant. It will do well and I'd recommend this restaurant for any occasion - as I said, it is very well managed. It will do well.
-M.D., Capitola, CA
Negative Au Midi Aptos Review:
I am surprised that this restaurant is still in business because the small portions are extremely overpriced. On the dinner menu there is only one entree priced under $20 (barely): the Raviole Provencale for $19.75. The kitchen lacks imagination and has been serving the same items for two and half years while reducing the portions in size and raising its prices.
This French bistro would not stand up next to the likes of Bistro Jeanty and Bouchon. Santa Cruz County deserves a better French bistro representative of the genre.
I wish the owners luck.
-Patty S., Capitola, CA
Average Au Midi Aptos Review:
When this restaurant first opened, my husband and I fell in love not only with its Provencal menu,but its naturally charming owners. The maitre d' is the husband and the wife is the talented chef. We went when it first opened in the fall of 2007 before the place was adopted by the locals. We stopped going on a regular basis because a simple dinner there can be expensive. This past week I went for lunch with a friend and discovered that although the food was tasty, the portion sizes seemed to have shrunken.
My companion had the Quiche Lorraine which included a side salad which was lightly dressed. It was $11.50 for a small wedge.. Its flavor was not remarkable. I had one of my all-time favorite French bistro items, the Croque Monsieur. It too included a small side of lightly dressed greens. The sandwich itself was very small. In contarst, I had brunch at Eccolo in Berkeley, had their Croque Monsieur with a larger side of greens for the same price, $11.50, and it was more favorful and three times the size. Somehow, I think that Au Midi may be suffering from not enough income and is starting to reduce its costs by giving the customer less for his or her dollar. Let's watch this place carefully over the next few months.
-Jane R., Capitola, CA
I have two words to describe this place.. honest and heart. Although I was not blown away by the entire experience. The place has a great heart and you can tell the chef is making honest food. honest = quality ingredients, hard work, and passion.
The lighting was terrible. I wish the place wasn't so industrial in it's lighting design. They also have Fleur De Sel (salt) containers on the table which you have to open and put your fingers in to pinch salt out of to put on your food and that kind of grosses me out. I would prefer a more sanitary way to get to my sodium. Who put their fingers in the salt before me? Blech!
Other than that, I can't say anything bad about the place because the service was so warm and the food was honest
We had the scallops and the steak. Both the sauces were great!
-Whit H., Santa Cruz, CA
Au Midi Aptos - Photos: