Hotel bistro in Maumee deserves another look.
Updated on 3:15 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014 to reflect the following change: Saba's Bistro 1705 was given a three star rating by the reviewer.
It's a hyper-competitive scene for restaurants near the I-80/I-90 turnpike in Maumee, where dozens of eateries compete for the business of passersby and out-of-towners who exit the freeway.
There is plenty of variety and even more signs advertising deals of the day, as restaurants look to reel in customers. With that said, it's easy to see how Saba's Bistro 1705 is overlooked. Hidden inside the Holiday Inn Hotel and Splash Bay Water Park resort, the restaurant does not stand out in the sea of restaurants that dominate the area.
Address: 1705 Tollgate Dr., Maumee
Hours: 6:30 to 10:30 a.m. and 5 to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; Friday 6:30 to 10:30 a.m. and 5 to 10 p.m.; Saturday 7:30 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 10 p.m.; Sunday 7:30 to 11 a.m.
Wheelchair access: Yes.
Average Price: $-$$$
Credit Cards: AE, Dis, MC, V.
Web site: N/A
And that's unfortunate, because it has a lot to offer.
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We visited on a Tuesday night and the place was like a ghost town. Other than a couple of men at the bar, we were the only patrons. Our waitress was quite bubbly and livened up the place a bit.
We ordered the New York strip ($24), a 14-ounce broiled steak, served with red skinned potatoes and au jus on the side. The thick-cut steak was nicely grilled, well seasoned, tender, and with just enough fat marbled in to keep the meat juicy. We were pleasantly surprised by both the taste and quality.
We also ordered the chicken penne pasta Alfredo ($15), boneless chicken breast, tossed with Alfredo sauce, sun-dried tomatoes and mushrooms. The pasta was cooked properly, the sauce was creamy, and the chicken was well flavored, but overall, the dish was pretty standard.
Kids meals on average are about $5 each but are offered free when adults order entrees. The options included the usual chicken fingers and fries, hamburgers, and grilled cheese.
Families that looked to be staying at the hotel were in the restaurant during our second visit on a Saturday night, along with several people at the bar.
We ordered tilapia ($15 for two fillets), broiled and served with a scoop of mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts. The fish was moist and flaky with a crunchy blend of spices and it tasted fresh. The mashed potatoes tasted homemade, complete with lumps and sprinkled with chives.
The baked Ziti skillet with Italian sausage, peppers, onions, mushrooms, and ziti tossed in marinara sauce was smothered with melted mozzarella, creating layer upon layer of cheese that was overwhelming.
The restaurant is open for breakfast and dinner only and doubles as room service operator for the hotel. Our waitress left the dining room several times during our second visit to deliver room service, but it did not affect the quality of attention she provided our table.
Saba's Bistro may be hidden, but it's food and service standout. This place is worth the visit.
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Star ratings are based on comparisons of similar restaurants. The Blade pays for critics' meals.
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