NYC's Balthazar Opening Next Month (London)
Lots of buzz about the opening next month in Covent Garden of this beloved, Manhattan restaurant. From what I've read, the prices are going to be tres expensif. Ah well, it's London and not Manhattan SoHo, so it's to be expected.
Robert Reid, who trained under Joël Robuchon and took over for Marco Pierre White at the Oak Room will be the chef.
What I loved most about Balthazar was the great brunch one get always get. I hope they serve the same choices here.
I finally got to Balthazar for lunch yesterday. My daughter-in-law is in London for a few days after a week each in the Cotswolds and Cornwall.
I had a scrummy Eggs Benedict and she had the steak sandwich. All in all it was a good experience with excellent service and there's a huge menu. The seafood offerings from a large seafood bar were very tempting, but I'll have that another time.
It seemed to me that the lush dining rooms make it a much larger space than the NYC SoHo branch - looks and feels a lot more authentic than some of the other brasseries in town, but of course it's the food that really matters most.
Our meal didn't come to much more than a burger with fries and a bowl of soup at Kopapa, so this seems good value for money. By 1, the restaurant was full... appeared to be lots of local workers rather than tourists.
Next store is a very nice-looking bakery. Tourists walking by seemed amazed by the £2.50 price for a croissant. Welcome to London.
The fact that it's in the Covent Garden neighborhood alone will add another few pounds and a couple of quids, lol.
The Manhattan Baltazar already draws an international/touristy clientele anyway. My guess is that Balthazar London will keep with it's Franco-American theme. There's not a lot of reason to deviate from its success but if anything they should go ahead and put mushy peas on the menu.
It will be interesting to see where it fits into the London hierarchy of faux French brasseries. Unlike NYC, of the days before McNally started his empire, London already has a good range of places delivering this style of food - however is going to be positioned as a US faux French brasserie or will Keith try and go more French than US.....the menu seems to indicate the former.
I did enjoy my visits to Balthazar in NYC but was that because of the magic of NYC or because of the restaurants brilliance? I will be intriguied by the reviews.