Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Mar 15, 2009 05:28 PM

Corton, Shang or someplace else?

Gave my SO choice of Corton or Shang for dinner as a Christmas gift. Based on posts I've read neither seems to be a good option. Per Se and Masa are out. Falai is our current favorite. We have been to Robuchon, Cru. Have not been to EMP, Picholine, Veritas.

What do you suggest?

Thanks in advance. Really appreciate your help.


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hey, fdr,

    The reports I've read about Shang have not been at all positive. However, I'm not sure why you're dismissing Corton. Although we haven't been there, it's on our go-to list because with very few exceptions, the reviews I've read have been raves. But if you still have your doubts....

    EMP would certainly be my #1 rec since, as regulars here know, it's our favorite NYC restaurant. But we've also had superb meals at Picholine and Veritas within the past year, so they would be excellent options as well.

    I would note that these three differ greatly with regard to ambiance, so that might factor into your decision. EMP is very grand and gorgeous, Picholine has elegant, subdued ambiance, and Veritas has minimalist decor and a chic feel.

    3 Replies
    1. re: RGR

      Thanks, RGR.

      I may need to reconsider Corton.

      1. I had the tasting at Corton and did not think the portions were small, after having numerous courses, I would be overly stuffed if everything was normal a la carte sized. I saw other tables that ordered a la carte and their portions sizes were normal. Didn't experience any issues with service either, they were very accommodating to my bf and I and my need to take pictures of everything.

        1. re: lanadai

          thanks for your thoughts, lanadai. Portion size is never an issue for us. I've also read criticisms of Falai's portionsize and it's one of our favorite restaurants (and we think the portions are prefect). I guess people are used to American size portions . . .

      2. Shang doesn't really belong with the rest of those restaurants at all.

        I just ate at Falai and the non-pasta dishes were wonderful, if you go I recommend ordering the tasting and telling them you are gluten-intolerant or hate pasta. 9 courses for 80 dollars make it a real bargain in this company, but the service and wine list are pretty poor. I would go again just for the food, but I wouldn't take someone like my Dad who cares about the service. I would definitely inquire about corkage if you go.

        The octopus & tongue dishes were really amazing though.

        Corton is great. Haven't got to Cru, Veritas is probably next.

        2 Replies
        1. re: brooklyndude

          brooklyndude, thanks for your thoughts. Falai is probably our NYC favorite right now and we have had a different experience re: pasta, service. The octopi is also one of our favorite dishes. Agree Falai's wine list is limited. Cru has an amazing wine list (it was in two huge books!).

          What made Corton great? Please tell me more about the food. Thanks.

          1. re: financialdistrictresident

            The pasta at Falai is good for what it is but seemed out of place with the rest of our meal.

            The food at Corton is really inventive modern French cuisine which has been pretty well documented elsewhere. It's really intricate without being fussy and is technically very well executed.

        2. Having been to both, I'd probably say Corton. The majority of posts and reviews I've read about Corton have been positive. Shang is more of a mixed bag. Though if you order wisely, I think you can have a very good meal at Shang. But I'd say service at Corton is better.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Miss Needle

            Thanks, Miss Needle.

            I'll report back (though right now I'm a bit behind in reports for Keen's, Gordon Ramsey Dining Room and The Inn at Erlowest on the Tristate Board).

            1. re: financialdistrictresident

              Hey, fdr,

              The Inn at Erlowest has been on my "go to" list for the longest time, so I'll be very interested in reading your report on the Tri-State Board. :-)

              1. re: RGR

                RGR, we just missed Chef Dale Miller who left the Inn right before New Year's Eve. We actually enjoyed the New Year's Day dinner and breakfasts better. The Inn is lovely and some rooms have lake views. Dale Miller will be opening a new restaurant in downtown Albany.

                1. re: financialdistrictresident

                  Thanks, fdr. I thought I'd read somewhere that the chef was leaving. From looking at the website, the inn does look lovely, so if you say the food remains good, I'll still consider going there. Looking forward to your more detailed review on the Tri-State Board.

          2. Made reservations for May. Thanks to Miss Needle, etc. and who also experienced similar issues trying to reserve via I will report back (though I'm still behind on my reports for Keen's, Gordon Ramsey Dining Room and the Inn at Erlowest/TriState Board).