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Murray Hill - French Bistro and Italian

s
sgaston Jan 15, 2007 08:14 PM

We're at the Carlton, at 28th and Madison for 2 nights, and are considering the following after reading on Chowhound. Comments, and suggestions please.

French Bistro
Artisinal
Le Petite Auberge
Park Avenue Bistro

Italian
A Voce
Il Trulli
Campanile

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  1. e
    eve RE: sgaston Jan 15, 2007 09:02 PM

    for bistro, Artisanal or Park Avenue

    for Italian--A Voce is a mess-can't respond to the others.

    1. c
      cricri7 RE: sgaston Jan 15, 2007 09:06 PM

      I stayed at the Carlton last summer and I brought my boyfriend to Campanile. I always go there when I am alone in NY and he just loved it. The food is incredible. I have dinner at the bar when I am alone and chat a bit with the owner. He makes you feel welcome and the food is really good.

      As for french, I told myself that I would try La petite auberge and artisanal the next time I am in town. Some people knock it, but I had a good experience at Les Halles, dinner and breakfast.

      Have a nice trip!

      1. r
        RGR RE: sgaston Jan 15, 2007 10:17 PM

        Artisanal is a brasserie, not a bistro. Ergo, it's big and quite noisy. It's particularly known for its cheese. I'm not a fan of the food.

        I like Park Bistro and La Petite Auberge, both of which are more intimate and cozy. PB's cuisine is of the modern persuation, and the setting has stylish Paris bistro-type ambiance. LPA serves classics, and the interior is like a charming little inn in Brittany.

        I haven't been to I Trulli in a long time. A Voce's modern Italian cuisine is wonderful, but the horrendous noise level when the room is full has kept us from returning.

        If you like traditional Italian, Campanile is an excellent choice. The food is expertly prepared, service is efficient, and the space is very attractive and comfortable. Truly a below-the-radar neighborhood gem.

        The Cafe at Country, in the Carlton, has very good food. However, I would caution about eating there when the place is packed because service can falter, and the noise level can be uncomfortably high.

        Enjoy our stay and Bon Appetit!

        1. s
          sgaston RE: sgaston Jan 16, 2007 01:58 AM

          Thanks for the help. Any deli's close by, heard of Sarge's - any even closer, or on the way to Madison Square Garden, looking for deli breakfast, bagel, lox, etc.

          1. sivyaleah RE: sgaston Jan 16, 2007 01:27 PM

            Artisinal is very large and loud for sure. I have a different take on the food, I love it, have been there numerous times. One of the best onion soups in the city, they do seafood extremely well and you can't get a better hangar steak anywhere. And of course, there is always the cheese, of which they are famous for. Service is kind of spotty, but never so bad that you feel ignored; or at least I've never felt that way.

            I've only been to I Trulli once and it was a couple of years ago so I don't know about right now, but my husband and I had a lovely meal on his birthday. It's particularly enjoyable in the winter when the fireplace is roaring but don't sit too close - it's very warm! Very cozy place. Everything was lovingly made and served.

            1. ellenost RE: sgaston Jan 16, 2007 03:19 PM

              I like both Artisanal and La Petite Auberge. As RGR noted above, Artisanal is a brasserie, whereas La Petite Auberge is a more of a bistro. Sarge's is great for deli.

              1. l
                Lucia RE: sgaston Jan 16, 2007 04:26 PM

                I like Artisanal and LPA. I'm not a fan of Park Ave Bistro, but I only gave it one try. I've only been to A Voce of the Italians. I went soon after A Voce opened and wasn't too impressed.

                1. NYChristopher RE: sgaston Jan 16, 2007 07:22 PM

                  I live a block from you and can tell you a very good bet you didn't list was Les Halles. Walk over to Park Avenue South ... between 28th & 29th.

                  I also like Artisinal, but it'll run you more. I Trulli is, in my humble opinion, terribly overrated.

                  FWIW, the place in the Carlton (Country?) looks very good as well, I just haven't been.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: NYChristopher
                    r
                    RGR RE: NYChristopher Jan 16, 2007 09:58 PM

                    Someone else did mention Les Halles up-thread. Mediocre food at best, problematic service, sardine-like seating, and intolerably high noise level. Too many other superior places in the vicinity to waste a meal there.

                    Note that there are two restaurants in the Carlton: the upscale Country and its less costly, though not inexpensive, more casual sibling, Cafe at Country. As I mentioned in my previous post, we've been to the Cafe, and the food is very good.

                  2. d
                    dbird RE: sgaston Jan 17, 2007 02:26 AM

                    Les Halles is abominable and I say that advisedly. I persisted over the years despite hair, rodents and insects in and around my food. Finally woke up to the fact that this is New York, and there are plenty better bets for my ninth life! I don't like Artisanal either. Loud room, indifferent service and unexceptional food save for the gougeres which are spectacular but overpriced and send me rummaging for my pastry sleeve.

                    Haven't been upstairs at Country but am ambivalent about the cafe. The much vaunted steak tartare is a waste. Dominated by pickled chanterelles, which might as well be vinegar soaked corrugated cardboard. It's criminal to obliterate both mushroom and meat like that. The presentation is nice.

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