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Montmartre May Have Manhattan's Best French Fries

Thin and crispy, sprinkled with salt, onion powder, mustard powder and... sugar.

I had a few last night and was blown away both by how delicious they were and how simple it sounded.

These give the Breslin's thrice fried fries a run for their money.

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  1. How are the portion sizes at Montmartre? I've been eyeing the restaurant for a while but the menu seems a bit pricey. What else did you have there?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pookipichu

      For the two of us, for food and a few cocktails, usually around $100-$110. It varies a lot dependent upon what entrees we get to share between us two. Some of the seafood dishes aren't super big. The duck for two is big, and yielded leftovers. The country terrine is also pretty generous.

      1. re: Monica

        We had a ton of food as we were a party of four, and the kitchen sent out a few dishes. The raw fluke with strawberries was delicious but on the smaller side. The watermelon salad was also very good, large cubes of watermleon with goat cheese in an herbal broth with a lot of Thai basil. We liked the heirloom tomato one even more, gorgeous tomatoes served with a funky cheese and pickled olives. One of our friends tried the artisan salad, which she described as simple but delicious. The country terrine was delicious. A coarse and fatty pate made out of pork. Two large slices, too. We usually get the boudin chinois as well. A crispy patty of Sichuan inspired blood sausage. Wonderfully savory.

        There was a special of a whole grilled turbot, which I shared with my husband. With a side of zucchini with ricotta, pinenuts, and basil, which was fine, not my favorite. Our friends loved their scallops main with corn and shishito peppers. And they sent us fries as well for the table.

        1. re: kathryn

          l think l'd like to come back as you in my next life, if reincarnation there be.

      2. I definitely need to make a return visit soon to Montmartre. I wish they would prepare the duck dish for a solo diner; maybe they would let me take home the leftovers. Will definitely order the fries next time. Their brunch menu looks wonderful too!

        1. Wow- mustard powder?? Are they spicy the way that dijon can be?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ttrockwood

            Not really, but the mustard powder gives it a little bit of "this tastes so familiar but I can't place why," just a hint of something extra going on.

          2. yes, if you put sugar on foods, people will call that "best."

            Glad to hear someone is sparing diners the hard labor of dipping their fries in sugary ketchup. (Curry wurst vendors take note.)

            1 Reply
            1. re: barberinibee

              In this case the "secret" ingredients have been made public: Ryan Sutton spilled the beans in his Bloomberg review, presumably after asking someone at Montmartre just what's in those fries.

              But it's a good bet that many other restaurant dishes benefit from undisclosed boosts in salt, sweetness or fat—PEDs of the professional kitchen. Maybe the less we know, the better off we are.

            2. Sugar has no place on French fries. Jesus told me so.

              1. I really like the fries at Fred's (@ Barney's).

                1. Finally returned to Montmartre for dinner last night, and it was again wonderful! Knew I had to try the fries, and I agree with you that they may be the best in NYC! Loved the salt/sweet taste. The fries are wonderful on their own or with the dipping sauce.

                  Also had the new salt cod brandade with a chili sauce that was delicious. I was "gifted" with 2 additional first courses: the fluke with piquillo, cilantro, sea beans and pimentón that had a lovely heat; and the beet salad. Almost disappointed to see the beets since I don't care for beets, but Chef Tien worked his culinary magic and turned me into a beet lover. The beets were so sweet, accompanied by pears, hazelnuts, wood sorrel and mustard vinaigrette. Never would have ordered this dish on my own, but will order it again.

                  I ordered the scallops with corn and peppers, tomato and celery since it looked so beautiful on my neighbor's plate. The dish did not disappoint either. Scallops were cooked perfectly.

                  I had the fries and the cauliflower as my side dishes. The cauliflower was another winner; it was accompanied with cashews, mint, lime and a cashew cream. Very delicious.

                  Almost too full for dessert, but had to try the yuzu custard with berries that was a lovely finish to a wonderful dinner.

                  I was seated in the garden which was lovely. Noise level was fine. Service was very friendly and attentive. My water glass was always being refilled before I even noticed that I needed refilling. Love that they serve Badoit for their sparkling water.

                  Look forward to returning to Montmartre. Want to try their delicious sounding brunch.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ellenost

                    My goodness. We had the fluke as well as the cauliflower for the first time tonight. So delicious! My husband compared the cauliflower to the vaunted deep fried Brussels sprouts with mint, crispy rice, fish sauce from Momofuku Ssam Bar. One of my favorite things I've had here.

                    We also had the anchovy and black garlic broccoli, carrots with goat cheese & spiced butter, snail "pot pie" with root vegetables and chorizo, and a special of pan roasted red snapper with pickled lemon, olives, wilted watercress. Everything was good, and they've updated their cocktail list to be more "autumnal" as well.

                  2. Finally made it to Montmartre, the fries remind me of barbecue potato chips, not for any barbecue flavor, but because of the sugar. I'm not sure I'm crazy about the sugar but the fries are wonderfully tasty and I prefer them to Breslin (only because my Breslin fries were incredibly salty).

                    The fries came with the moules frites, which were unfortunately, really sandy. Really sandy. But overall, I really liked the restaurant, it's very beautiful and romantic in an unpretentious, effortless manner. The flavor of the moules frites was fantastic, beautifully presented and generously herbaceous. The blueberry cake was absolutely delicious, and very pretty but I wish the cake layer was a little less rustic, and the creme fraiche presentation a little more refined looking rather than a fallen splotch.

                    Service was perfect, attentive, informed and charming. I was able to sit in the backyard, which is lovely and sedate. No blaring music, no loud/shouting patrons.

                    I really need to try other items on the menu, it's such a lovely restaurant and the food has potential.

                    1. This goes into the how to make a lousy day worse: Chef Tien Ho is no longer with Montmartre. Michael Toscano will be running both kitchens at Perla and Montmartre (according to Eater). Hope to see Chef Tien at another NYC restaurant very soon; I adore his cooking, and will miss him very much :-(.

                      7 Replies
                        1. re: kathryn

                          Crap, I'm finally going to make it to Montmartre and the restaurant promptly changes the chef. Looks like the dinner menu is a transitional one, filled with lots of boring French dishes. I like Perla, but Montmartre under Toscano will probably need some time before it starts to fire on all cylinders.

                          Oh well, I'll just order fries for all the courses.

                          1. re: LucidInterval

                            Hope Chef Toscano doesn't change the fries since they were terrific.

                            1. re: ellenost

                              Based on the new menu, the fries look to be changed.
                              They list as 'aioli & brown butter sabayon' now.

                              1. re: kyeung

                                Can't wait to try it. I'm a huge fan of Toscano.

                              2. re: ellenost

                                New menu items are okay, a tad over-salted across the board, and very much boring. And the fries are not good either. It was explained to me that the fries are now hand-cut in house, and still sweet/savory, but it was soggy, rather one-note, and I didn't even bother to try them with the aioli.

                                The service was terrific even though it was quite a struggle for them, as every table had to wait a long time between the courses due to the kitchen's unfamiliarity with the new dishes.

                                1. re: LucidInterval

                                  What a shame! While I found the service at Montmartre to be very friendly and attentive, it was Chef Tien's food that was the real draw. I found the indoor noise level very high, and since its location is inconvenient, it's unlikely that I'll be returning anytime soon.

                        2. We went to Montmartre last night. I ordered the Jerusalem artichoke -- here called "sunchokes" -- appetizer and pappardelle in a lamb neck ragout. R. ordered chicken liver mousse and a duck breast. Portion sizes were large, everything was well-executed and the staff was friendly and efficient.

                          Tables are a bit closely set in the dining area -- not sure about the outdoor garden, which did not appear to be open. It's November, after all. But that's the only thing that I think prevents this restaurant from being a good destination for a romantic or intimate dinner.

                          A very good time. We will return.

                          1. IPA Fries @ Bondurants

                            Brined overnight in draft beer, then seasoned with thyme and salt. Good stuff.