Expensive moving to London dinner date in W. Village or UES - Suggestions?!?!
My dear friend is losing his current love interest to the Brits and he want to take her out to a really nice dinner and he wants to wear his new suit (don't ask!).
He's looking for some place where he won't feel out of place in a suit but wants minimal trendiness and as minimal stuffiness as one can get from a restaurant where you won't feel out of place in a suit.
Expense is new issue, preferrably in the W. Village or UES.
I would suggest Cafe Boulud. The cuisine is superb, service is both cordial and polished, and the contemporary decor is stylish. Definitely *not* trendy, and though there are some Hounds who think it's stuffy, I have never found it to be so. Despite the fact that there is no tie/jacket requirement, because of its location on the UES (76th St., b/t 5th & Madison), the preponderance of men do wear them, so your friend will definitely feel comfortable wearing his new suit.
I personally was disappointed a bit in Cafe Boulud and agree on the stuffy factor from both patrons and staff. I love david burke & donatella though and while it can be stuffy, i felt the crowd to be a little more diverse. Have also been meaning to try aureole for a while up there.
I was thinking Wallse but I'd also suggest Balthazar or Il Giglio - or the Harrison in Tribeca. I think any of those are apt to work. Balthazar gets noisy.
What about the Spotted Pig? It is a "gastropub", so it is thematically appropriate, and although it is more casual, it is pricey and I did not feel out of place at all wearing a cocktail dress there for dinner a few months ago. It is also Michelin starred.