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Restaurant Safran in Chelsea

Dandel Aug 13, 2006 02:31 AM

Just had a great meal at a vietnamese/french restaurant in Chelsea called Safran. It opened a week ago and doesn't yet have a liquor license but is next to a wine shop. We brought a bottle of crianza with us to the dinner. It is on 7th avenue between 15th and 16th street, on the west side, closer to 15th streetl.
I ordred the Cha Dum, a delightful meat ball appetizer made with vermicelli and ginger, and served with sesame shrimp crackers. My wife ordred the sate, a tasty medlee of shrimp, chicken, and vegetable skewers. My chive flowers entree was heavenly, while my wife's bo loc lac or teriyaki marinated beef cubes, with potatoes, was yummy.

We are definitely going to be back.

  1. designerboy01 Sep 26, 2007 12:01 PM

    This place is still very good in terms of quality and portions. I was just here this last Sunday for dinner. Would recommend the Seafood Bouillabaise, Pan Seared Filet of Sole, and the Bo Loc Lac. I was knawing at the sugarcane when I got the Sugarcane Shrimp. Very tasty.

    1. c
      Chelsea Pearl Sep 27, 2006 05:50 PM

      I just got my first lunch delivery from Safran, and it's official: Chelsea needs this place. As recommended above, I got the honey pork chop lunch box ($8.95). What I received in about 15 minutes was:

      pan-fried noodles with peanuts, onions and egg -- standard, but simple, clean-tasting, fresh and good.

      salad -- with cherry tomatoes and a bit of shredded papaya in a creamy cilantro dressing.

      spring roll -- my least-favorite part, but still good. Next time I'll get the summer roll instead.

      pork chops: TWO thin-sliced chops - a large portion. Marinated, supremely tender, with a pronounced smoky-grilled flavor. Very, very good.

      And rice. They included multiple sauces, including a little container of Siracha chili sauce, which would be lovely if you were ordering from work.

      Everything was much less sweet than you get at many thai/vietnamese places. I also got a shredded papaya salad to have for dinner, and it's huge: a great deal for $8.

      The best part of this place is that the menu branches out. I kept it simple for my frst try, but I'm now looking forward to exploring their menu, and I have high hopes. And oh, to have Pho in the neighborhood! Glorious.


      1. l
        lchang Sep 27, 2006 01:56 AM

        I just tried Safran tonight. It was definitely a pleasant surprise. We had the green papaya/beef salad: delicious, one of the best I've ever had (and at $8 seemed like a bargain). Also had the Safran special roll, ok, but nothing I'd order again. And the crispy egg noodle which was very good. It had a very authentic taste. Unfortunately many of the asian restaurants outside of chinatown tend to sweeten their dishes to accommodate a "western" palate but this was quite good. We also tried the banana cake for dessert which was excellent. It was plated in a coconut sauce with green tea ice cream and strawberries on the side. Fantastic. Overall I was very pleasantly surprised, as I'm not usually a big fan of anything that seems too asian-fusion-y. I hope this place makes it. It is badly needed in the neighborhood.

        1. Dandel Sep 7, 2006 12:28 AM

          They definitely deliver and I have ordered takeout from them 5 times already. They don't yet have a menu online but you can pick up a takeout menu from them when u pass by the restaurant.

          1. c
            Chelsea Pearl Sep 6, 2006 09:39 PM

            They deliver, but with a $15 minimum, which is kind of annoying for a place with such good lunch specials. I'm still waiting to try it out--poverty sucks--but as soon as I do I'll post a full report.

            1. f
              Foodluva Sep 5, 2006 04:07 PM

              does anyone know if they also deliver? would love to see a menu online if it exists...

              1 Reply
              1. re: Foodluva
                araess Sep 12, 2006 07:21 PM

                I had the Bamboo Soup which was amazing, the beef carpacio and the vegetable platter, where both good. There aren't chopsticks on the table- you have to ask- and they don't serve hot tea at all as of the time of this post. The downstairs room looked interesting.


                French Vietnamese Cooking
                88 7th Avenue
                (Between 15thst & 16th Street)
                New York, NY 10011

                Free Delivery(min $15)

                Fax:(212) 929-1819

                Open Hours
                Sunday - Tursday: 11:30am-11:30pm
                Friday & Saturday: 11:30am-12:00mid
                Last Order: 20 minutes before closed

                Major Credit Cards Accepted(Min $15)


                Cha Gio
                Crispy spring roll, shrimp, crabmeat, pork, and mushroom nuoc cham sauce 6

                Chao Tom (sugarcane shrimp)
                Grilled shrimp paste wrapped around sugarcane 6

                Fried calamari
                Seasoned w. jalapenos, garlic and scallions, lemon pepper dipping sauce 8

                Medley of shrimp, chicken, beef and veg. skewers, penut dipping sauce. 10

                Cha Dum
                Steamed creamy beef ball w. mushroom, sesame cracker 7

                Little Neck Clam
                Poached in pepper, lime juice, coriander w. broth 12

                Dim Sum Sampler
                Combination of four different kinds of dimsum (Seafood, watercresss, abalone, and foie gras), three dipping sauces) 10

                Tasting Plate (2 person minimum) 16 per person

                Sauteed Foie Gras
                Mango and a ginger balsamic glaze 16

                Dragon Roll
                Spring roll w. shrimp, lobster meat and mushroom served w. a garlic chili dipping sauce 12

                Special Summer Roll
                All tasting summer rolls are served w. 5 kinds of dipping sauce ( Wasabi, lemongrass garlic, spicy mango, lemon citrus, and hoi sin)

                Soft Shell Crab Roll
                Cucumber, mango, avocado, and masago 10

                Lobster Roll
                mesculun salad, mint, strawberry, masago 10

                Safran Roll
                Grilled shrimp and scallop, fried calamari, and crunchy crackers 11

                Spicy Salmon Roll
                cucumber, pineapple, masago 8

                Peking Duck Roll
                Scallion, cucumber and plum hoisin sauce 8

                egg Roll
                Avocado, cucubmer and mesculun salad 8


                Salmon Gravlax
                served w. jicama and thai basil slaw 8

                Beef Carparccio
                Lime juice and chile garlic vinaigrette 7

                Mango and lime juice 10

                tricolor pepper & jalapeno salad, citrus dressing 10


                Prawn and grapefruit salad
                grilled prawn w. grapefruit, avocado and roasted peanuts ina tamarind dressing 8

                watercress salad
                Red onion, orange, grape tomato citrus vinaigrette 6

                Green Papaya salad
                grilled beef, roasted peanuts, basil dressing 7

                String Bean Salad
                w. fresh mushroom, grape, tomato, basil dressing 6


                Duck cosumine
                Clear soup w. foie gras ravioli 7

                La Sa
                curry and coconut milk soup w. shrimp, rice vermicelli

                bamboo Soup
                vegitarian consomme w. bamboo piths, ginkgo nuts, snow fungus, lycium fruit and baby mushrooms 6

                Mien Ga
                chicken cellophane noodles in grandma's chicken broth 5

                noodle & rice

                Stir friend rice noodles
                shrimp, chicken, calamari, egg, bean sprouts, chive flower, roastead peanuts, served w. a tamarind sauce 12

                Crispy egg noodle
                crispy pan fried egg noodles, topped w. sauteed shrimp, scallops, beef, chinese broccoli, shitake mushroom and bean sprouts, in a veg reduction 14

                Foi Gras Fried Rice
                Stir fired w scallops and egg white 16

                Safran fried rice
                stir fried w. shrimp, egg, salmon, and vegs., served on top of crispy lettuce and topped w. rice puffs 14


                Grilled fish of the day
                marinated w. lemongrass and mint, served w. lemon pepper and tamarind garlic sauces 22

                Pan seared filet of sole
                served w. tamarind chili reduction, fried shallots, scallions, and dill 23

                Mekong River Prawns
                Stir friend w. garlic, butter and peppercorns, served w. a lemon dipping sauce and tea noodles 24

                Seafood Bouillabaisse
                hot and sour seafood broth w. prawnws, scallops, fish, mussles, calamari, clams, tamarind, and aromatic herbs 22

                Crab Farci
                crabmeat, mushrooms and cheeswe, stuffed in a shell and baked, served w. a mango salad and a saffron sauce 24

                Seafood Risotto
                Rice shrimp, squid, scallops, fish, clams, mussles, and enoki mushrooms, cooked in a saffron seafood broth 22

                Ga Nuong Xa
                Grilled Boneless chicken marinated w. lemon-grass and lime juice, pickles, mango salad 14

                Grilled rack of lamb
                marinated w. dill and lemongrass, served w. a string bean and musrhoom salad and tamarind sauce 24

                Xuong Nuong (Grilled Pork Chop)
                Marinated w. lemongrass, honey, and garlic, served w. cucumber salad 16

                Green Curry Duck
                Green curry w. bamboo shoots, okra, and eggplant 18

                Duck Breast confit
                Slow cooked in a red wine and citrus sauce, served w. balsamic honey glazed foie gras and a caramel pear 26

                Bo Loc Lac
                Teriyaki marinated cu ed steak, served w. sweet potato-fries and cucumber tomato salad 16

                Saigon Beef Sate Noodle
                Beef sauteed w. a peanut sauce, mango, pineapple, cucumber, tomato herbs, roasted peanut 16

                Soft Shell Crab
                Pan fried in garlic butter, veg. risotto lemon juice 24

                Trio of Tofu
                Sampler of lemongrass grilled tofu, butter sauteed tofu, and spicy stewed tofu served w. baby vegs, mango, and mushroom salad 14

                Sauteed Chives Flowers
                Sauteed w. lily bulb and oyster mushroom, garlic and ginger (beef 4, chicken 3, or shrip 5 can be added for additional) 14

                Sauteed Chives Flowers
                Sauteed w. lily bulb and oyster mushroom, garlic and ginger (beef 4, chicken , or shrimp 5 can be added for additional 14)

                black and White mushroom sampler
                Shitake, oyster mushroom, wodear, cauliflower mushroom, enoki and seaweed, served with sticky rice 16

                Vegitable Platter
                long bean, chinese broccoli, baby bok choy, lotus root, seaweed sauteed w. garlic and ginger creamy veg rice 14

                24 oz Porterhouse
                all grilled dishes are garnished w. mixed greens and baby vegetables 45


                Soi Nep steamed sticky rice w. coconut 3

                Soi Nep Than
                Seamed black sticky rice w. coconut 3

                black & white
                mixed black and white sticky rice w. scallion fried shallots and roasted peanut 4

                Steamed brown rice 2

                Jasmine White Rice 2

                Green Curry Fried Rice 6


                Strawberry Napoleon w. berries coueis and ginger ice cream 7

                assorts sorbets 7

                chocolate souffe 7

                banana cake
                coconut cream and mango sorbet 7

                banana black bean roll 7

                pistachio and almond drop
                a sponge cake base topped w pistachio and almond mouse 7

                Safran Lunch Box
                (Served 11:30 am - 4:00 pm)
                Lunch box comes w. salad, noodle, rice, and your choice of spring roll or summer roll, and one from below:

                Lb1 Grilled lemongrass honey pork chop 8.95
                Lb2 Grilled Lemongrass chicken 8.95
                lb3 Sauteed Chicken w. ginger honey sauce 8.95
                lb4 Sauteed Curry Chicken or beef 8.95
                lb5 sauteed chicken w. sate sauce 8.95
                lb6 sauteed cicken and mixed veg. w. basil 8.95
                lb7 Fried coconut shrimp w. basil dipping sauce 10
                lb8 grilled lemongrass tofu w. sauteed veg. 8.95
                lb9 grilled salmon w. sauteed veg. 10

                dinner combos
                all combo come w. a small soup of the day and small garden salad

                combo a
                bo luc lac (teriyaki cubed steak), w. sweet potato fries and cucumber tomato salad 16

                combo b
                grilled fillet of salmon with mixed vegetable & miso ginger sauce 15

                combo c boneless roast duck with shitake mushrooms & baby boc choy 16

                combo d Girlled lemongrass chicken (beef +2) 14

                combo e
                sauteed chicken w. ginger honey sauce 14

                combo f
                sauteed chicken w. lemongrass & red chili sauce (beef +2) 14

                combo g
                sauteed beef or chicken w. sate sauce (beef +2) 14

                combo h
                curry chicken or beef w. string bean, basil and eggplant (beef +2) 14


                L1. cha Gio
                vietnames fried spring roll made w. shrimp, pork and mushroom 5

                L2. Goi Ga
                Chicken w. julienne cabbage, carrots, onion salad, roasted peanuts, herbs and a spicy garlic vinaigrette sauce 7

                L3. Goi Du Du
                Green papaya salad w. grilled beef, basil, and roasted panuts n vinaigrette sauce 8

                L4. Ga Xaqo Xa Ot
                Stir fried chicken w. mushroom, onion, bell pepper, lemongrass, and a red chili sauce (chicken 8.95 beef 9.95)

                L5. Ga Xao Gung
                Old fashioned vietnamese style sauteed chicken w. bell pepper, straw mushroom and onion in a ginger and honey sauce (chicken 8.95 beef 9.95)

                L6. Chicken Mealody
                chicen sauteed w. mushroom, bell pepper and onion in a spicy garlic chili sauce served w. steamed broccoli 8.95

                L7. Chicken Sate
                Sauteed sliced chicen w. a panut sauce served w. pineapple, cucubmer, tomato, roasted peanuts (chicken 8.95 beef 9.95)

                L8. Ga Nuong Xa
                Girlled boneless chicen marinated w. lemongrass and lime juice, pickles, bean sprout sticky rice 8.95

                L9. Bo Luc Lac
                Teiyaki marinated cubed steak w. tomato, onion and string bean salad 12

                L10 Bun Xao
                vienamese style stir fried rice nooles w. shrimp, bean sprouts, egg and roasted peanuts served w. nuoc cham sauce(vegetarian optional) 7.95

                L11 Vientames Fried Ricce
                Shrimp chinese sausage, egg and bean sprouts, served w. green leaf lettuce and herbs( vegitarian optional) 7.95

                Fesh young coconut juice 4
                Vientamese expresso Coffee 3
                Iced Vientamese expresso coffee 4
                Ginger iced tea(sweetened) 4
                lemon iced Tea (sweetened) 4
                Lemongrass iced green tea (sweetened) 4
                chrysantemum iced tea (sweetened) 4
                soda 2
                s. pellegrino sparkling water (1 liter) 5
                voff water 6

                Lunch Special
                Lunch served Monday - Friday
                between 11:30 - 4:00
                except holidays

                Noodle Soup

                LS1. PHO
                A hearty oxtail soup w. rice noodles and sliced filet of beef served with. basil, bean srout, a hoisin dipping sauce on the side 7.5

                LS2. Lasa
                Light curry and coconut milk soup w. shirmp, rice vermacelli, bean sprouts and herbs. 8.5

                LS3. Mien Ga
                Chicen cellophane noodes, coriander and scallions in cicken broth 7

                LS 4. Bun Chanh Chua
                hot and sour sea food soup w. shrimp, fish calamari, rice noodles, pineapple, tamarind and aromatic herbs, served w. basil, bean sprout on the side 8.5

                LS 5. Chicken Noodle Soup
                sliced breast of chicen , rice noodles, bean sprouts, baby bok choy, corriander and scallions in chicken broth 7

                LS 6. Tofu & Vegitable
                Choice of chicen soup or coconut soup 7

                Bowl of Rice
                the main dish served on top of rice w. steamed baby bok choy, broccoli, strring beans, mushroom, tea boiled egg, pickles salad, chef's spicy dipping sauce on theside, choice of white rice, brown rice, or veg fried rice.

                LR 7. Grilled Pork Chop 7.95
                LR 8. Fried Seame Pork Loin 7.95
                LR 9. Grilled Lemongrass Chicen (Boneless) 7.95
                LR 10. Grilled Ginger Garlic Salmon(filet) 8
                LR 11 tempura Coconut Shrimp 9
                LR 12 Boneless roasted duck 9
                LR 13 Combination 12
                Grilled chicen skewers , grilled pork chop and tempura coconut shrimp 12
                LR 14 Girlled Lemongrass tofu (vegtarian) 7.95


              2. m
                mrnyc Sep 5, 2006 06:00 AM

                holy smokes it pays to scroll the board a bit. we have been starved for good viet in the nabe, this could be the place. shaky beef? count me in. thx for the tip.

                1. Dandel Sep 4, 2006 11:49 PM

                  yeah, let me know how it went for you. We went back for the third time. The last time, we ordered the red devil chicken and the honey pork chops, both of which were amazing. The chef, Laura, was trained at a culinary institute in Vietnam and worked at the rainbow room for 6 years. I can't wait to try the foie gras fried rice.

                  1. c
                    Chelsea Pearl Aug 28, 2006 04:23 PM

                    I'm surprised that this place hasn't had a bigger impact on the boards. It looks great--thanks for the report. Going to give it a try.

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