Great French Restaurant?
I'm looking for a great french restaurant. I'm craving french food and I haven't had a good french meal in a long time in NY.
Here's some of the things i'm trying to find
Decor: I'd like something nice (although doesn't mean just really fancy, something that is just nice and homey would be fine), but food is obviously the most important (by a long shot).
Price: isn't an issue although that doesn't mean the most expensive option is the best (i'd actually like more than one suggestion at diff price ranges).
Wine: A good wine list would be very nice, but not an absolute must.
Location: prefer something more downtown (14th or below), but doesn't really matter.
Any suggestions would be great. Thx.
Chez Napoleon on West 50th is a homey, authentic, and very good bistro. The complete menu is on their website. Also, Jarnac in the West Village is cozy, charming and has very good food and service.
Hey Lau, Ouest is the French restaurant that made me fall in love with French food, where before I had been indifferent.
The meats, especially the lamb, rabbit, and veal sweetbreads, are brilliant, always flavorful and juicy, never overdone. The baguettes, baked fresh and brought to your table while still hot, are amazing. The service is lovely: never stuffy, always accommodating. And the wines by the glass are all well selected, kept at more or less the correct temperature, and not left in the open bottle for too long. (The Cactus Creek shiraz is a favorite, and unfortunately not available except in restaurants, it seems.)
My only complaint is that vegetables are scant and vegetable sides are overbuttered, which is actually not at all representative of how typical French diners eat, in my experience. It would be lovely to have beautiful, simple, pan-roasted whole tomatoes, for instance, or oven roasted Brussel sprouts and asparagus -- that kind of thing.
I'm a big fan of the red leather banquettes. They make the space warmer and more fun than the typcial white tablecloth French restaurant.
Entrees run from 30-40. There is a $33 prix fixe menu before 6:30 p.m. on weekdays.
I'm no expert on French food, but I really enjoyed the experience at L'Ecole, the restaurant of the French Culinary Institute on the corner of Broadway and Grand. In particular, the winter salad, the skirt steak w/fries, and the chocolate ganache cake were exquisite. I've seen other reviews on here that were more mixed. The four course prix fixe from 5:30 to 7:00 for $40 is prepared by the chefs/teachers. The five course meal at 8:00 is prepared by the students.