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Jul 28, 2008 12:14 PM

Avec vs. Blackbird

My family and I (party of 5) had a great meal at Blackbird over the weekend. We didn't get seated until 20-30 minutes after our reservation time due to the previous party at the 5-tops taking their sweet time. Apparently they were there for 4 hours. As a result, the staff was truly apologetic and understanding towards us, doing everything they could to speed things along. When we finally got seated, we were greeted to a free round of champagne! Without getting into details about the food, everything was outstanding, namely the veal sweetbreads, suckling pig, and pork belly. Additionally, we got 3 desserts completely COMPED...another nice gesture from the staff since we had to wait awhile for our table. In total, we paid $300 (incl. tax/tip/3 cocktails). Of course, it would've been slightly more if we had to pay for the 3 desserts.

We want to try Avec sometime soon, so my question is how does Avec compare to Blackbird in terms of price/portion sizes? The prices at Avec certainly look cheaper, but how are the portion sizes? Would we expect to pay the same amount of money to be equally satisfied and full as we were at Blackbird?

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  1. Avec is a totally different concept than Blackbird. Most things on Avec's menu are "small plates" which is part of the reason why prices are lower. That being said, there are things on Avec's menu that are the size of a typical main course (a pizza, a pork shoulder prep, whole fish, etc).

    Anyway, Avec is intended to be much more casual than Blackbird. You will almost definitely pay less at Avec than Blackbird and will still have a very satisfying meal.

    Keep in mind, no reservations at Avec, so be prepared for a pretty good wait if you go primetime on a Friday or Saturday night.

    2 Replies
    1. re: jesteinf

      Thanks. I guess what i meant is value or price for portion size. As much as I really loved Blackbird, I thought the entrees were quite expensive...I probably would've priced them as much as $8-10 cheaper. Was also wondering if Avec's small plates are like the sizes of the appetizers at Blackbird and if the large plates are more like the entree sizes.

      If we go, it'll probably be on a weeknight around 7pm. We saw how many people were out waiting for a table Saturday night at 9pm, and we don't really want to deal with that as much as possible haha.

      1. re: phr208

        Go a little earlier than 7, even 6:30 or 6:45. By 7, you'll wait. It's harder to seat a larger group there. If you think Blackbird is overpriced you'll probably think Avec is overpriced. There is a premium to be paid for fresh, local and in season food, excellently prepared.