Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Dec 30, 2008 09:41 AM

Les halles...whats the REAL deal?

Going in April, but wanted to have a nice dinner here. What's the story? is it really as good as everyone says?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Who says it is any good? That is not the general consensus at all. If you use the search function you'll find reviews. If it's the Bourdain association that is attracting you, he hasn't been involved with it for many year.

    1. The real deal is that it is an average bistro-type restaurant. There are two locations, Park Ave South and Wall Street. Some of the food is good, and some is pretty awful. Sometimes the service borders on rude, and almost always is "nonchalant."

      There are not too many good places for lunch in Wall Street,, so they get by there on the duck confit salad and steak frites, but I wouldn't recommend either location to a visitor.

      1. I ate there about 2 years ago and thought it was pretty terrible. Def not on my recco list.

        1. I live very close to the one downtown, and use it occasionally as my local grab a bit place. The food is really uneven, but some stuff is good. I generally stick to the moules mouclade, the merguez, and if I'm there for lunch on the weekends, the croque monsieur. Excellent fries as well. But the other respondents are right, not necessarily worth a special trip.

          3 Replies
            1. re: tattud_gurl

              years 10 years ago...les halles was a great bistro...great steak frites...

              these days, its very below average and not worth your time.

              1. re: tattud_gurl

                I also mostly dine in the downtown location and I also like to order their mussels (they have many kinds, and most of them are very good). I like the fact that you can order half serving so you can order other stuff. As for steak tartare, they will prepare it table side by mixing the ingredients in front of you per your request, and that's always nice. Their fries are consistently good!

                Have to agree that their steaks can be hit and miss because sometimes they are overcooked. Avoid chicken as it turned out to be dry everytime I tried. Pasta is so so. Duck confit salad, french onion soup, pate, and salad with lardons are all quite good and consistent (not exceptional, but good to great).

                Just note that the downtown location used to have a lot of office people for lunch and dinner. However, with wall street crumbling there may be less corporate diners so you may enjoy your time better!

            2. I'll be the lone voice in the darkness on this one...The meal I had at the Park Ave location about 3 years ago was one of the best in memory. The food was excellent, the staff was friendly and attentive, and I'd go back in a flash. I thought the prices were most reasonable also. I had the Steak Tartare and it was fabulous.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Fydeaux

                I agree about the steak tartare. Also, the smoked herring, merguez, boudin noir, and choucroute keep me going back occasionally. If the OP likes these dishes, I think it would be worth a try, as there are not a lot of places that serve them. Otherwise, most of the food is ordinary and there are much better brasseries in Manhattan, such as Nice Matin, Marseille and Cafe d'Alsace to name a few, where one can get a better meal.

                1. re: Fydeaux

                  I too am a fan of the Park Ave location. It is a very pleasant little place, not fantastic but delivers a good lunch and has a Gallic vibe.