11788 W Broad St
Richmond, VA 23233-1005
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bar louie

Cuisine: Lunch, Grill, Tapas

bar louie is a Lunch, Grill, and Tapas restaurant where most Menuism users came for fun with friends, paid between $25 and $50, and tipped more than 18%.

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  • 2/10/2015

    A dining patron from Ashburn, VA tried it, liked it, and rated it . They liked the food, didn't like the service, and didn't like the ambiance.

  • 2/01/2014

    A Lunch chowhound from Ashburn, VA tried it.

VACaverRN photo

VACaverRN

 Richmond, VA
 

Won't return in this lifetime.

Last summer, I chose Richmond’s new Bar Louie as a location at which to gather with several friends to celebrate my birthday. I phoned the restaurant over a month in advance to make reservations for a large group (approx 20), speaking with someone who took all the appropriate information.

During the week of the scheduled event, I called to confirm the event and was told that the “person who handles events” would be calling me to confirm.

By Saturday afternoon, the day of the event, I had received no such phone call, so I again called to confirm the reservation. (At no time did anyone I spoke with say anything about Bar Louie’s policy of not accepting group reservations.)

My husband and I arrived promptly at 5:30 pm (the time of our supposed reservation). At the door, I told them our name and that we had reserved dining accommodations for approximately 20 people. I was (finally!) told at that time that they didn’t accept reservations and that we could have a seat at the bar while they got our tables ready. A mention regarding the reservation policy at the time of my very first phone call to them would have been tremendously helpful.

While seated at the bar corner near the front door, we greeted our friends as they arrived. My husband had ordered a tall draft beer which was sitting untouched on the bar surface as he spoke with our friends. The completely full glass suddenly exploded (I am not exaggerating), showering my husband in glass shards and beer. The glass shards flew so far – halfway down the bar in both directions – that they landed in another patron’s meal and all over the floor. My husband had to leave the restaurant to drive home to shower (to remove the embedded shards from his skin) and change clothes. This removed him from my scheduled celebration for a large portion of the evening, as we do not live close to the location.

Not one single individual member of the staff expressed regret, apologies or made any obvious effort toward service recovery. I asked one of the girls at the seating desk if I could speak to the manager. She had just witnessed the exploding glass and still she had the idiocy to ask what I wanted to speak to the manager about. That I had to request an audience with the manager on duty myself – something that should have occurred automatically without my initiation – floored me. When the manager did come to the table, she did not appear to be at all concerned that a guest at her establishment had been showered with broken glass at her bar and had left to wash off the glass, blood and beer. She casually said she “had heard that it happened”. She was not rude, but neither was she particularly professional or enthusiastic.

I unfortunately cannot speak to the quality of the food except to say that it was mediocre. The inadequacy of the service eclipsed the influence of any other factor affecting my opinion. My friends and I were all in agreement that we will not be returning to Bar Louie. The service was spotty at best and the food only average. None of the staff seemed at all familiar with the items on their menu, and the key ingredients for several of the mixed drinks we inquired about were “not available”. Rather odd for a restaurant named BAR Louie…

The underwhelming evening made it clear that it was an embarrassingly poor choice of venue at which to gather with friends for such an occasion. For the inconvenience and potential hazard of my husband having been showered in glass, we were “comped” one tall draft. That was the singular concession made for a night we’d rather just have erased from our memory.

This particular building location has changed names many times since it was built not long ago, and I had been encouraged by recently noting that the parking lot was always full in the evenings since it became Bar Louie. I can only surmise that far West End Richmond young adults are utterly desperate for an adult urban atmosphere without having to drive all the way downtown.

powellae photo

powellae

 Raleigh, NC
 

This place is a DUMP

First, we were shouted at from across the restaurant to sit any where, which considering it was dead at lunch time, was ok. The waiter came over and we told him we’d never been here before and asked for recommendations. He told us that the soup was “God awful”. We thought he was kidding but he confirmed he was “totally not kidding” and he only lets us know the truth because the restaurant policy is that “if you order it, you are paying for it”, so he didn’t want us to be disappointed. Okaaay.

I ordered the fish tacos and my friend ordered the barbeque chicken salad with no onions and dressing on the side. The food took about 25 minutes to arrive. Her salad arrived with onions, dressing in the salad and more dressing on the side. This might not have been so bad except they were finely chopped, so there was no pulling them off the salad.

My fish tacos looked ok, but when I put the mango salsa on the first taco and took a bite, I discovered that the mangos were rancid. So, that killed one taco right off the bat. Meanwhile, my friend had a terrible time cutting her overcooked chicken breast. We let the waiter know at the end about the salsa (health code violation) but naturally, since I ordered it, I’m paying for it.

During our 25 minute wait time, we were looking at the rather pretty light fixtures but then noticed all the dead bugs in them, the dirt around our booth and the ladies room was gross. The sofas are also covered with a bed sheet – I don’t even want to know.

Overall, a $35 lunch that was not even subpar. We won’t be back and would recommend to others that it may be a good place to throw back some drinks, but hopefully you don’t have to eat anything or go to the restroom while you are there.

Fish Tacos

mango salsa was rancid

vinillashak photo

vinillashak

 Richmond, VA
 

Absolutly Wonderful

To be honest with you, my first impression was fantastic. From the people there to the workers. Bouncers are huge so in a way I felt safe. Food was just a little pricey, but was the best I have ever eaten. I would highly recommend anybody to bar louies.

Cheeseburger*

Was wonderful.

sweetpetite photo

sweetpetite

 Richmond, VA
 

HOW ARE THEY STILL IN BUSINESS?

We attended Bar Louie Restaurant in Richmond, Virginia for a night cap after a local comedy show in the same shopping center in a part of town known as the far West End. (It was 9pm in the middle of week on a Wednesday and I thought clearly, this was a “late night” in my book.)

We stood in a long line without a peep and watched one gentleman enter the restaurant ahead of us. Apparently, the ratio of those entering and leaving the premise must be equal at all times. We get it…fire hazards,etc. We understood and waited our turn, until the gentleman who entered right before us (an African-American gentleman, dressed in khakis and collard shirt), got in. The “senior” doormen insinuated by their comments that he was a stalker of women, and therefore, should no longer be allowed to enter. Oddly enough, we felt the same odd stare shooting our way that the gentleman before us had gotten.

To make a long story short, not even having yet a drop of alcohol we were asked to leave by “management” because we were occupying a bar stool that belonged to someone who had previously been there four hours before we arrived. We had no idea as we sat there waiting for anyone to take our order and get served. No one occupied the seats, and certainly there were belongings in the near vicinity, but who were we suppose to ask. It’s like going to an open concert- Clearly, no seats are reserved, unless duly specified by clear signage. We respect No Trespassing signs because that’s simply what it says we are not to do.

Some time later, the “owners” of the seats returned demanding their “stools.” Having refused to leave the seat because I had no idea that bar stools had been reserved for local alcoholics, I stood my ground and didn’t move until I was asked to do by some one deemed a “manager.” I never verified if he was because he was so condescending, and shouted so loudlyover my head to leave and vacate the seat, which I did with full cooperation, that I couldn’t even get in a word.

I would highly recommend the GM to visit this specific franchise in this locality so as to avoid future mishaps with the same, horrible outcome and experience.

The service is slow and understaffed, clearly indicated by the numerous patrons I spoke to while I awaited my turn.

NO ONE WANTS TO EVER FEEL DISCRIMINATED AGAINST, BUT UNFORTUNATELY, THIS IS THE ONLY WAY TO DESCRIBE MY EXPERIENCE.

I Just want to ensure that NO ONE ENCOUNTERS the experience that me or my friends did this particular night.

Having later read the previous reviews, I echo their sentiments and will never go back to this establishment. It’s poor service and lack of professionalism speaks volumes- given I never complain much less go on a site to submit such a horrible review.

Invest your patronage somewhere it will be valued.

Sincerely,
GUEST WHO IS NEVER COMING BACK

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