Petite 4 serves up big-city qual­ity with small-town com­fort

The Idaho Statesman - - Front Page - BY HENRY COF­FEY

When Bleu­bird closed in Jan­uary, Boise went into mourn­ing. The sud­den evap­o­ra­tion of the city’s finest sand­wich shop felt like a night­mare.

But help was on the way for fans of its food.

In April, Sarah and David Kelly, the power cou­ple be­hind Bleu­bird’s mas­sive suc­cess, opened Petite 4. Named after its diminu­tive size and lo­ca­tion at 4 N. Latah St., the new restau­rant aimed to bring “French bistroin­spired dishes to the Boise Bench.”

Petite 4 has in­her­ited much of its stylis­tic vision from Bleu­bird. A strik­ing kitchen forms the heart of the restau­rant, and every mem­ber of the staff looks dap­per in a pin­striped apron.

The restau­rant has also in­her­ited Blue­bird’s fer­vent fan base; the din­ing room was packed at 9 p.m. on a Tues­day in Oc­to­ber. It’s no se­cret that reser­va­tions are highly rec­om­mended un­less you plan on fight­ing for space at the bar.

And I un­der­stand why the Kellys de­cided to close Bleu­bird and open Petite 4. Bleu­bird was pop­u­lar be­cause it was the best pos­si­ble ver­sion of a sand­wich shop, but the type of food and the hours of op­er­a­tion cre­ated in­her­ent lim­i­ta­tions.

Petite 4 does not suf­fer from those lim­i­ta­tions. It can grow and change end­lessly in ser­vice of Sarah Kelly’s unique culi­nary vision. It can bask in the classy-yet-ca­sual at­mos­phere that David Kelly seems to con­jure by sim­ply ex­ist­ing — his en­ergy, charm and en­cy­clo­pe­dic mem­ory make you want to visit again and again.

The menu it­self is pleas­antly sim­ple, with starters, veg­eta­bles, seafood and meat on one side, cheese and char­cu­terie on the other, and a sep­a­rate card for daily spe­cials.

Menus are up­dated sea­son­ally and when in­spi­ra­tion strikes. Reg­u­lar vis­i­tors will be ex­cited to find a new fall menu, which re­tains pop­u­lar items while in­tro­duc­ing im­pres­sive new dishes.


The restau­rant may be petite, but the por­tions are not. The starters are gen­er­ous and the meatier en­trees are ap­prox­i­mately the size of a fam­ily sedan. And when you con­sider the vast­ness of some of these meals, the prices are closer to a brew­ery than a steak­house.

You’d be wise to start your meal with a cheese plate ($15), which fea­tures a ro­tat­ing as­sort­ment and

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