Between Corton, Fleur de Sel or Dovetail for husbands birthday dinner next week - thoughts??
All the menus look fabulous so I am not worried about not having a good meal so it comes down to other arbitrary things - corton has gotten great reviews here, only one lousy one for bad service - I seemed to have snagged a great reservation and there is a lot of buzz but the photos look a bit stuffy
Fleur de Sel - also gets positive reviews but not as hyped right now which I think is a good thing, it looks like a more comfortable setting
Dovetail - I think I have already crossed off the list, the location is not as convenient – I just remember him saying he wanted to it
Fleur de Sel is a favorite of ours and, yes, it is a very comfortable, cozy place with lovely decor and a romantic feel. And you are also right that the contemporary French cuisine is superb. Service is a bit reserved but always professional. The cost for the 3-course prix fix, $76, is the same as at Corton. But if you are thinking of doing a tasting menu, there is a difference: $89 at FdS; $110 at Corton. We recently did FdS's tasting dinner, and it was stellar -- and at $89, a real bargain for cuisine of such high quality.
We have not been to Corton yet, but from the photos I've seen of the space, it does look rather stark. As for the cuisine, even without having sampled it, it's obvious to me that Liebrandt's style -- more "experimental" -- is very different from Chef Reynaud's at Fleur de Sel, which is closer to traditional.
I think the questions here are do you want more traditional cooking or more modern, and a warm atmosphere versus a more stark modern one. Dovetail has very modern cooking, but the atmosphere has warmth. Fleur de Sel is more traditional with a cozy ambiance, while Corton is thoroughly modern both in food and decor(I haven't tried it yet so can't comment on food quality).