Serious Dining Comes to Bucks.
This class-act BYO (a wine store and beer distributor are a block away) flagged slightly after it was "discovered" by the Inquirer newspaper many months back. Thankfully, it has since recovered and recently has even become more excellent.
Rouget is located within an Addams Family type Victorian building overlooking a large grassy corner with an old stone springhouse. There's lovely seating on a glassed-enclosed porch facing the corner. However, bland Home Depot touches like acoustical tile ceiling and boring carpeting rob the interior of its inherent charm. Too, interior tables, resting as they do on thick carpeting/padding, can be tipsy.
A really great value is their $35 four-course tasting menu Tuesday-Thursday, with creative cheese course optional if you call hours in advance; a pricier six-course menu is also available, and calling in advance helps here, too. Pate and mushroom soup appetizers are world-class; ditto selected mains offerings and white chocolate dessert.
Some main courses are better than others, and it's not easy to tell from the menu which is which. For example, in the last three visits most mains were quite good, but less interesting than the outstanding appetizers. However, on our last visit I felt primal, so ordered a filet mignon steak, even though this is a notoriously pedestrian dish. Yet, the combination of exceptional meat quality, exactly-right cooking and the chef's marvelous cheese-sauce mixture transformed a normally plain-Jane dish into one of the best steaks I have had either here or abroad.
Service, which briefly generated complaints (we know of folks who refuse to go back), was quickly remedied with an employee replacement. It is now efficient and friendly, even if like virtually all other Bucks eateries it comes up short in the finer points of server professionalism.
Bottom line, Rouget offers excellence in fine dining normally associated with Center City standouts. Yet -- weekdays, at least -- at prices from an earlier and happier time.
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