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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Cafe Bethesda Restaurant Review: The grande dame of Bethesda eateries is this genteel destination, owned by the same folks who own and operate the adjacent L'Academie de Cuisine (located in Bethesda and Gaithersburg). The décor is almost ladylike with its café curtains, assorted plants and window boxes. Of the several starters, try the Café Bethesda salad with Melba toast croutons and tiny wedges of Brie. Entrées are pricier than expected, but you do get your money's worth. Selections include rack of lamb, Chilean sea bass, tenderloin steak and seared duck breast. We chose the veal scaloppine with a slick of melted fontina cheese and resting on good, old-fashioned whipped potatoes. It was an ideal meal for a chilly evening, and so substantial that we should have halted there. But chocoholics are well-advised to select the truffle cake, an adaptation of the volcano cakes with molten centers. While the food here is not flamboyant, it is reliable and safe, with just enough edginess to please the adventurous. But, the service lags, so be forewarned.