Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Blue Bicycle

671 Lumpkin Campground Rd., Dawsonville, GA

Last Saturday my sister Sabrina and I lunched at The Blue Bicycle in Dawsonville, GA.

I know what you're saying: Dawsonville?

Or maybe you aren't saying that. Maybe you are familiar with the Dawsonville of today, a growing town centered around the North Georgia 400 premium outlet mall. You know that Dawsonville has two Japanese hibachi-style steakhouses, a hotel and annoying traffic on busy 400, so you can understand that Dawsonville might also have a decent little bistro. Then again, maybe you remember the Dawsonville of yesteryear, which merely offered a McDonald's with a Bill Elliott racing theme and a couple of barbeque joints in an otherwise culinary vacant place. That's the Dawsonville I knew when I lived there during my adolescence, so any inspired and non-chain restaurant there takes me by pleasant surprise.

The Blue Bicycle was my sister's suggestion. She lives in Cumming, so she's got the skinny on the good stuff in north Georgia. While I was skeptical at first, I remembered that it was Sabrina who introduced me to Rathbun's and Flip, both of which I adore. So I decided to give this supposed bistro in Dawsonville a shot.

And I'm so glad I did. The Blue Bicycle, located right behind the outlet mall, is a hidden gem amidst the mundane predictability of nearby Ruby Tuesday and Longhorn steakhouse. The interior is casual chic, with black and white photographs of citiscapes adorning the walls, along with an actual antique blue bicycle. Each table is topped with a different set of salt and pepper shakers, a fun little note in a charming environment.

I began with an order of crab and corn cakes ($6). You can see from the photo that it was in fact only one cake, not "cakes". Possibly it is necessary to advise your server how many cakes you require and understand that you will be charged per cake. I loved the cake. It had a little kick of flavor without being too spicy.

For my entree I chose the pimento cheese tartine. The online American Heritage dictionary defines tartine as "a French open faced sandwich, especially one with a rich or fancy spread." This was somewhat accurate. I was served several ladles full of pimento cheese atop two slices of bread that resembled biscotti in size and texture, but of course were not sweet. The quality of the pimento cheese was on par with my grandmother's, which is a big compliment. The dish ($8) was served with my choice of a salad or the soup du jour. I went with the soup, which was a very thick and creamy potato leek. I give it a 7 out of 10. Would have liked a little more leek flavor, not so much a dominate potato.

Sabrina ordered the curried chicken salad ($8), which was very similar to a restaurant I make at home, and equally good. It contains raisins, chunks of apple and a light curry dressing on mixed greens. A nice choice for those who don't want something to heavy.

Another plus is the wine list. The Blue Bicycle offers a pretty interesting selection (especially by Dawsonville's standards) and includes several wines from the vineyards of Dahlonega, GA, twenty minutes north of the restaurant. Seems that even Dawsonville restaurants are now making attempts to become locavores.

Verdict: Hands down my favorite restaurant in Dawsonville, GA.


  1. Have not been there but the crab cake looks burned to me.
    Thanks Tom

  2. Decent food ,horrible service. Owner has an attitude.