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Bistro on the boulevard

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Citrus Springs eatery introduces innovative catering to include its special desserts

By Julianne Munn

Good food and friendly service are the keys to longevity for the 3-year-old Boulevard Bistro in Citrus Springs and the business is also emerging as an in-demand catering venue as well.

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Owned and managed by Kathy Weiler and her daughter, Michelle Colbert, the bistro has branched out to provide unique and innovative catering throughout the county for events such as weddings, reunions and birthdays — even a gig at Rock Crusher Canyon.

The Bistro is their base of operation and features breakfast all day, plus a large variety of sandwiches, homemade soups and salads. Specialties include such as shrimp — hand breaded and fried — and open-face roast turkey plates, country fried steak, haddock and fried chicken breast, all $9.99 with trimmings.

Newer items include customer favorites like the quesadilla burgers, chicken parmesan subs and a new chipotle chicken panini, Colbert said.

Desserts are in the “yummy” category, all home baked by Kathy Weiler, including pies, pastries, cakes, cookies and more. Weiler also accepts orders for her specialty pies and other items.

Ben Hensley helms the kitchen at the Bistro, but desserts are the domain of Weiler, whose love of baking is evident when she describes the daily treats.

Not long after the opening three years ago, the women attributed the Bistro’s success to their focus on “listening to our customers.”

The focus was apparently on target, because there are many regulars to visit the restaurant on a daily and weekly basis from throughout the community.

It’s easy to see why.

The food has that welcome homemade vibe and portions are more than generous.

Patrons can choose between comfortable booths and tables in the sparkling clean restaurant and all are met at the door by smiling servers.

Breakfast has ample traditional items, plus some specialties such as Grammie’s French toast, three slices of sourdough bread dipped in a sweet vanilla butter and grilled golden brown in full or half orders; homemade corned beef hash; eggs Benedict, biscuits and sausage gravy and a whole lot more.

Hot and cold sandwiches and subs, including a shrimp Po’ Boy ($10.99) topped with slaw and homemade Remoulade sauce are favorites on the lunch menu, as well as the selections mentioned above. And a kids’ menu is available for youngsters.

Beverages include the usual and also a variety of special drinks, namely mocha capacchino and other variations.

If you are interested in a catered affair, just some of the samplings range from appetizers of shrimp cocktail, deviled eggs, fruit and cheese trays, Pina Colada bites (cream cheese rolled in coconut, topped with a cherry and pineapple), mini meatballs, Buffalo chicken won tons and more.

Just a few of the selection of catered entrees available are carved ham, roast turkey and roast beef; lasagna; chicken Cordon Bleu; slow-roasted prime rib; filet mignon; stuffed cabbage and peppers.

Sides can be potatoes in a varity of forms, brown sugar glazed carrots, rice pilaf and pasta, potato, Caesar and seafood salads. And, of course, desserts.

Special requests are also accepted and a trained staff is available to provide planning, setup, service and cleanup, Colbert said. They can also provide all necessary glassware, plates, linens, chafing dishes, ice and other extras if needed. 

A well-equipped catering food truck is always at the ready to transport food and service to events.

Originally from Fort Lauderdale, Weiler came to Dunnellon 35 years ago and retired as a bookkeeper from C&S Roofing after 18 years. Colbert lives in Citrus Springs and became involved with the restaurant business as a trainer for the Outback restaurant chain, visiting franchises nationwide.

Colbert’s background also boasts 17 years with the Marion County School System, in Dunnellon and Ocala, and most recently, as principal at Florida Virtual School, an online educational program.

Formely the site of Mango’s restaurant, the Boulevard Bistro is at 9576 Citrus Springs Blvd. It is open for breakfast and lunch from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.

For information about catering for private functions and daily specials, call 352-897-5155. Major credit cards are accepted.