French restaurants NYC

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Francophone (French-speaking) countries restaurants
Coming soon: French-speaking Countries Restaurants
Forget TripAdvisor, Zagat, etc.: our reviews come from our "scouts", all members of the Academy des Gourmets, American and French people including myself, all professionals and / or lovers of real French cuisine
Like you, we are customers expecting true French recipes, good service, fair prices, comfortable seating and cleanness. But we do NOT blame a restaurant because of the bad mood of 1 waiter. 
If you had a bad experience with a restaurant mentioned below, please let us know at:
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Please contact Thierry at Merci!

Newly Open / Listed (in red in the text below)
L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon (Downtown) $$$
La Goulue (Upper East Side) $$$
Saju (Westside) $$+
Chez Joséphine (Westside) $$+
Dominique Bistro (Downtown) $$
Lucien (Downtown) $$$
Côté Soleil (Woodside, Queens) $+
Recently Listed (in red in the text below)
  Le Coucou (Downtown) $$+
   Café Gourmand (Downtown) $
Gabriel Kreuther (Midtown) $$$
Le Tocqueville (Downtown) $$
Le Rivage (Westside) $$
Recently Closed
Bistro Citron
Le Périgord
Mon Petit Café  
Cercle Rouge
Pétrossian (Store still open)
Le Paris 

Chef Joël Robuchon is back in NYC, finally!
His "L'Atelier" is (re)open at 85 10th Avenue.
Monsieur Robuchon is also planning to open a restaurant and gourmet market
at the corner of East 53rd Street and Lexington Avenue.
"Le District" is a French "food" center with boutiques, stores and restaurants.
You can also attend culinary and wine class sessions.
It is located in Brookfield Place on Liberty Street, Downtown.

La Goulue restaurant is reopening!
It is now located on Madison and 61th St., not far from its former place. 
The cuisine, Art Nouveau panels and features are back!

Our Grades: 1/10 Bad; 5/10 Average; 7/10 Nice; 10/10 Fabulous
 Pricing: $ Moderate  $$ NY Average  $$$ High  $$$$ Outch!    B Nice Brunch   T Terrace  
Dishes mentioned below are sometimes removed from menus.

~~ Just for lunch & Pastry Shops - Sur le pouce & Patisseries ~~
6/10 $ La Tropézienne - 2131 1st Avenue in East Harlem - The Quiches, hot Sandwiches, and Ratatouille are fine. Their Brioches filled with custard are excellent.  "NY's Answer to Tartine"? Not really!
2/10 $ Au Bon Pain - Several locations - It is not a French company despite the name. Their entrées, soups, sandwiches are either Italian or American deli style, and their croissants and bread tastes like industrial ones!
7/10 $ Bel Ami - 30 East 68th Street - The owner of the little shop is American but they have good French style Salads, Sandwiches and Soups a
s well as very tasty French pastries. It closes at 7 pm. 
7/10 $
$ T La Bergamote - 512 West 52nd St. & 177 9th Avenue - They serves tasty French dishes such as Chèvre chaud, Quiches, Salade Niçoise, etc. They have excellent pastries you could find in a good Paris patisserie. 
7/10 $$ Bouchon - 1 Rockfeller Plaza & 10 Columbus Circle - This American pastry shop restaurant serves good Parisian sandwiches, Quiches, French Salads, as well as Macarons, French tarts that can satisfy a sweet tooth.
7/10 $$ Epicerie Boulud - Lincoln Center, Plaza Food Hall, World Trade Center - From Patés, Quiches, Smoked Salmon to Pastries, Sorbets, etc., everything is fresh and good. Boulud's website focuses on his restaurants and it is hard to find the "Epicerie" menu
6/10 $$ Fig & Olive - There are several locations in the NY area. Chef Lorange's good Mediterranean cuisine fits a lunch, not a real dinner
6/10 $ B French Café Gourmand - 9 Maiden LN (Financial District) - With a Provençal accent, this café restaurant is perfect for breakfast, brunch and lunch; the French dishes are good and portions are generous.  
6/10 $$ B T  Gastronomie 491 - 491 Columbus Ave. Although it's more an American coffee shop, they serve various French products such as Cheeses, Quiches, Macarons, Crème Brulée, Chocolates, etc., as well as Italian and Kosher food. They also have a small market area. Tables are comfortable and there is a terrace in summer.
6/10 $$ Macaron Café4 locations in Manhattan, some are tiny! - Although the owner is not French, they sell good Parisian style sandwiches and a dozen different flavored Macarons. "We pay homage to the French pastry" they say; not as good as at La Durée but prices are lower! Several products are Kosher
8/10 $$ B Maman (Mom in French) - 4 locations in Manhattan and at the French Institute E 60th St. on Saturday morning. - They are charming pastry shops with excellent French dishes and pastries. The quiches and croque-mamans are yummy! Try their Financiers and Croissants! These people care about their customers.
8/10  $  B  Maison du Croque - 17 East 13th St. - The tiny place serves various style Croque-Monsieurs (alike French Panini), all tasty and fresh, so convenient to eat / take out.
8/10 $+ B Maison Kayser - 11 locations in Manhattan - Eric Kayser is known in Paris and now also in NYC. His pastry shops have a  small restaurant. We recommend his Parisian and Vegetarian sandwiches, the quiche, gratinée, egg Cocotte, soups, and the pastries such as Éclair, Saint Honoré, and tarts. Try the mini Financiers, they are yummy! The baguette is "ok" (I am picky for real baguette!)
7/10 $ B  T  Moulin à café - 1439 York Avenue - This small French style "restaurant" serves good Entrées and sandwiches, as well as Chocolate Mousse and Crème brulée, etc. Curiously, the small Wine list has a couple of good names, not too expensive. They also have a small French "Epicerie" and a fire place.
6/10 $+ Pain d'Avignon - Plaza Food Hall, Manhattan - Essex Market, Queens - They make good Quiches and French sandwiches. Their baguette is good but not crunchy enough
5/10 $ B Le Pain Quotidien - Several locations - The Belgian company shops seem alike a blending of German bakery, American deli and Parisian café-bar. Nothing spectacular however they serves good Quiche, grilled Salmon, and Scallions Omelet (The Menu varies according to locations). Most tables are communal and I don't like it! 
3/10 $ Paris Baguette - 15 locations in NY area - It's Korean despite the name and the Eiffel Tower in the window. Although some pastries and breads are ok, I would not go there for their "French pleasures". It is a worldwide industrial food production with supermarket style taste born in Seoul. 
3/10 $ Paris Croissants - 1776 Broadway - It's Californian, not French, and not always fresh! And we don't fill croissants with cream in Paris... Must be Paris, Texas! 
---  PicNic - CLOSED
5/10 $ Prêt à manger (Ready to be eaten) - Several locations - This is an English chain. The sandwiches are ok but their baguette bread is too chewy
8/10 $ T Tartine - 253 West 11th St. - Size doesn't matter! The tiny place serves excellent French dishes: Croque Monsieur, Bouchée à la Reine, Salade Basquaise, etc, and a yummy Dark Chocolate Mousse Praline. Be ready to wait: people like the place very much!
5/10 $ Vive la Crêpe - Several locations - Guess what this non French chain is specialized into? They have various savory and sweet crêpes, most of them good but not truly à la francaise 
6/10 $ Raclette - 195 Avenue A - It is a tiny place but they serve good Swiss Raclette and Croque-Monsieurs, and everything is fresh! The pricing is honest; you help yourself at the counter.
6/10 $ Bien Cuit - 120 Smith St. in Brooklyn - This American Bakery pastry shop serves good French breads, Quiches and sandwiches, as well as a yummy Brioche crème fraîche. By the way mister Bien Cuit, you should correct your site: Baguette is a feminine word so it's Petite Baguette no restrooms
8/10 $$ Bistro Petit - 170 S 3rd St. in Brooklyn - It's a small food bar where Korean Chef Sung Park fabulously marries French & Korean cuisines: Foie Gras Prune Mousse, Kimchi Bouillabaisse, Korean Bourguignon, etc. The small affordable menu also includes Croque Monsieur, Organic Mesclin, etc. No desserts, no wine.
7/10 $ Colson Patisserie - 374 9th St. in Brooklyn - Belgian Chef Hubert Colson serves good Quiches, sandwiches, soups and salads, Belgian, French or Italian styles. He also makes fine pastries and country breads
6/10 $ B Provence en Boite - 263 Smith St. in Brooklyn - This simple location has nice Charcuterie plates, good Croque-Monsieur, Endives salad, etc. The pastry section includes fine Fraisier and Napoléon  Why the Sterling sign instead of $? 
6/10 $ Café Triskell - 30-04 36th Ave. in Astoria - The Crêpes, savory or sweet, are great for lunch. The flour is organic; vegetarians are not forgotten. Weird advertisement on the home page!
8/10 $ B Cannelle - 75-59 31st Ave. in Jackson Heights (LIC) - This Pastry shop with only few table serves great quiches, sandwiches and savory tarts. For dessert, try their nice Eclairs, Praline cake and Saint Honoré
~~~~~  For a real meal - Pour du sérieux  ~~~~~w
[P]  Available pictures on the right side  > >
(Nice Cuisine, Efficient Service, Nice Location, Fair Pricing - Details below, by area)
Bistro SK [P] - 273 City Island Ave. (City Island - Bronx)  $
La Grenouille [P] - 3 East 52nd St. (Midtown)  $$$$
Bistro Vendôme [P] - 405 East 58th St. (East side)  $+
Benoit [P] - 60 West 55 St. (West side / Midtown)  $$+
L'Entrecôte - 589 Lexington Ave (East side)  $
Sel et Poivre [P] - 853 Lexington Ave (East side) $$
Pardon my French - 103 Avenue B (Downtown) $$
Tartine Café - 253 West 11th St. (Downtown) $
       La Sirène [P] - 2 locations (Downtown & Upper West Side) $$
Our Grades: 1/10 Bad; 5/10 Average; 7/10 Nice; 10/10 Fabulous
 Prices: $ Moderate  $$ NY Average  $$$ High  $$$$ Outch!    B Nice Brunch   T Terrace  
Dishes mentioned below are sometimes removed from menus.

7/10 $ B T Bistro SK [P] - 273 City Island Avenue, City Island - It is not the only French restaurant in the Bronx despite what they claim but their cuisine is deliciously French! Senegalese Alsace born Stephane Kane and his Bronx originated wife did a great job with a small location, making it an affordable and cozy place in City Island. The menu is "bourgeois" and the dishes such as the Escargots, Mousse de Foie, Boeuf Bourguignon, Confit de Canard Sarladaises, Gratin de Fruits de Mer are excellent. All desserts are very good, particularly the Chocolate Mousse and Ile Flottante. The Wine list agreeably fits any of the dishes. Patrons are welcomed by the "Patron" (Owner in French & Latin) which is exceptional in the NYC area.
7/10 $$ B T Chez Lucienne [P] - 308 Lenox Avenue, Harlem - It is a comfortable restaurant with a nice ambiance, despite a service a bit slow and a lack of decoration. The menu includes a dozen of real French dishes and an interesting "Fish Market" list. The hot Foie Gras, Saucisson en Croûte, and Poulet Rôti à l'Ail are the stars while the Fixed Price Menu is satisfying. As a dessert, you could hesitate between the Profiteroles or the Crêpes au chocolat. The wine list is limited, balanced by a large number of cocktails. The prices are all fair and there is a bonus, a terrace that recalls Saint Germain des Prés quarter.
1/10 South of France - 1800 Westchester Avenue - You mean South of the USA: It's Puerto Rican! Several violations on Hygiene in 2007 & 2009 (NYC Gov.)  
--- L'Absinthe - CLOSED
6/10 $$ Le Bateau Ivre (Named after a poem by A. Rimbaud) [P] - 230 East 51st St. - It is one of the rare and real French wine bars in New York: their Wine list is large and well composed while several French dishes are satisfying: Asperges, Côtes d'Agneau, and the Gratin Dauphinois as side order. The Fruits de Mer (Sea Fruits in season) go well with their white wines and the selection of French cheeses is perfect for their red wines; it's enough for a meal in a wine bar! I would like to say that prices are fair but some good wines are too expensive. The service is descent but casual.
6/10 $$+ Le Bilboquet - 20 E 60 St. - The trendy hot spot is located along the French Institute. Curiously, there is not any name at the front of the restaurant; it seems that Mr. Delgrange keeps his "savoir-faire" in nightlife and elegant decor a secret. The French cuisine is satisfying, not more than that. We wouldn't dare to list any of the dishes since the menu frequently changes. The courteous service, the cool ambiance and famous guests have built its reputation. Pricing in food and wines are honest for the UES but not cheap! Their website is only for "emails". No menus.
8/10 $+ B T Bistro Vendôme - 405 East 58th St. - The entrance is small, it is not a fancy location but we rate them 8/10: It is a very comfortable and convivial restaurant with an agreeable decor and efficient service. And there is not too much noise! Most dishes are French and well prepared: the Fish soup, Pâté, Frog legs, Filet Mignon, etc., are excellent! The Quenelles are WOW! All desserts make a great finale. Be aware that menus change according to seasons. The Wine list is mostly French and satisfying. The pricing is fair. They have a small inside patio
---  Brasserie CLOSED 
---  Brasserie 360 - CLOSED
6/10 $$ B T Bistro 61 - 1113 1st avenue - Marseillais Chef Anthony Raggiri does well despite his location is small and simply decorated. It can be crowded and noisy but the service and prices are fair, while the dishes are generally good. You could enjoy a Soupe de Poisson, the Ris de Veau (sweetbreads) on toast, the Terrine de Foie Gras à la Truffe, the Blanquette de Lapin, and the Saumon Grillé. Try one of the fine cheeses then a warm Fondant Chocolate or the Crêpes au Sucre. The wine list is short but can satisfy any taste No credit Cards for Fixed Prices Menus
6/10 $$  T Café d'Alsace [P] - 1695 2nd Ave - The Choucroute and Baeckeofe are Alsatian but their Potée and Tarte Flambée lack of true regional taste. They invented a new Alsatian dish: the Alsatian Burger (My Alsatian nanny never made that in 14 years!). Actually, several dishes comes from around the world. By the way, is it Muenster, the American cheese? The Alsatian cheese is spelled Munster! The wine list has only few Alsace: a Cremant, 2 Pinot Gris and a Reisling. For the beer, the selection is large but no Alsatian beers! The decor, the service and prices are ok but again it's not really l'Alsace.
8/10 $$+ T Café Boulud [P] 20 E 76 St.; Daniel 60 E 65th St.; Bistro Moderne 55 W 44th St. - Chef Daniel Boulud presents French cuisine with savoir faire (Know how)! He manages several restaurants and épiceries in NYC (and worldwide). The NY restaurants are "Café Boulud", "Daniel", and "Bistro Moderne". The "Daniel" is expensive and sublime, while the 2 others have lower prices, still with a top quality. In any of his restaurants the decor as well as the service are impeccable. Among all the dishes, we could recommend the Foie Gras Torchon, Sautéed Skate (Raie) meunière, Bouillabaisse Pot Pie, Pain de mie crusted Dorade, and Crispy Duck Confit. And there is the famous Burger Royale: $70 the piece! For dessert: La Lune (The moon) and the Peche Melba cake are delicious. The wine cellar is exquisite and pricey but few half bottles allow tasting good wines at affordable prices. Reservation recommended; Informal (Evening).
5/10 $$+ T Le Charlot - 19 East 69th St. - Several scouts went there at different times: this restaurant is "variable". The comfortable restaurant becomes too small at pic hours and the service is either fine or very poor and snooty. Their dishes are either pricey (it's the UES) or affordable. The Moules Marinières and Steak au Poivre are good but other dishes can be disappointing. For dessert, the Praline Bombe and Tarte Tatin are worth a try only when they are fresh! The wine list is bigger than the menu, yet affordable. For a Brunch? Quality is rarely worth the Fixed Price menu!
7/10 $$+ Le Chat Noir [P] - 22 East 66 St. - This "casual elegant" bistro is very neighbor oriented (old clients pass first). It has an elegant decor while prices are at the UES area level. They serve several good French dishes: Cheese soufflé, Raviolis de Royans, Truffle French fries (side order), and a fine Ile flottante. Their wine list is well selected and includes some crus which quality justifies high prices. The service is professional, yet not too snobby. They have special events all year long. Reservation recommended; Informal attire (Evening).
9/10 $$$$ Le Cirque - One Beacon Court - What a twist! The owner is Italian and the famous and classy restaurant was serving Italian dishes for years: why a French name then? They finally hired the reputed French Chef Olivier Reginensi and the cuisine turned French: Wild Burgundy Escargots, Foie Gras Raviolis, Paupiettes of Bass, Roasted Black Truffle Chicken, Chocolate Soufflé, etc. Prices are Parisian chic + NYC top notch: Fixed Price Menu at $125 not including the wine .. outch! But the comfortable seating, the impeccable service, the palate pleasure and the impressive wine list make it worth the spending.
8/10 $$$ Daniel - See above Café Boulud
6/10 $$ Demarchelier - 50 E 86th St. - As said on their website, this family "tries" to bring a piece of France to New York. The decor is agreeable, the service is basically efficient although too snooty at time, and several dishes have organic / grass fed origins. Unfortunately, while the menu has interesting choices such as Bison Burger, Cheese Fondue, Daily Specials, etc., the kitchen has too many ups and down; several of our scouts were very disappointed. Price are fair, including for the Fixed Price Menu and the Wine list is ok but without greatness.
---  Frère de Lys CLOSED 
9/10 $$$$ La Grenouille [P] - 3 East 52th St. - Despite what it is said in their posted review, this is not the "Last great French restaurant in NY" (see: Veau d'Or; Bernardin; Le Cirque). The prices are high including for any of the fine wines and you feel like also paying for the wow decor and service. Never mind: their cuisine is really impressive and among other pleasures, they have an excellent Foie Gras chaud, great Quenelles, delicious Ris de veau and a fine Soufflé Grand Marnier. They also have nice vegetarian dishes. This is the location for an exclusive French dinner, perfect for celebration or anniversary. La Grenouille also has a private party room upstairs featuring a wood-burning fireplace, Juliette balconies, high ceilings topped with a sun drenched skylight. The room was once the home of the painter Bernard Lamotte, who along with his friend Antoine de Saint Exupéry (author of "Le Petit Prince") hosted many parties with Greta Garbo, Jean Gabin and Charlie Chaplin. Reservation recommended; Informal attire 
6/10 $$ Casimir & Co. (former Le magnifique[P] - 1022A Lexington Ave - The restaurant has a small 1st floor and a larger 2nd floor. The ambiance is perfect for a cool drink and/or a casual dinner. We recommend their Kir Royal: Champagne & Chambord liquor (Real Burgundy Kir: white Aligoté wine + blackcurrant liquor). The menu is mostly French including among other dishes, a fine Lobster Brulé, good Noix de St Jacques and a great Tartar de Boeuf. Keep some space for their desserts such as the Crêpes Suzette or Vacherin. The wine list is not long but it is enough to match all dishes. The service is "cordial", sometimes a bit slow, the pricing is fair considering the area (UES)  
--- La Goulue - E 61th St. - Reopening November 2017 - Review & website coming soon.
6/10 $$ T La Mangeoire [P] - 1008 2nd Avenue - The decor is French countryside style with limited space. The cuisine is good without panache despite Chef Delouvrier is former Chef of famous restaurants such as Essex House, etc. Anyway, try the Escargots, Provence Aioli, Lapin legs a la Moutarde, Duck Confit, Roasted Porc with "truffled" potatoes. For a dessert, what about real Profiteroles or tasty 5 Sorbet cup? The dishes of the Fixed Price Menu are small and average in taste. The wine list is interesting and affordable, with few exceptions. Unfortunately, the service is rarely cordial, sometimes messy, and the pricing is too high for the overall comfort. There is a small terrace. Reservation recommended for dinner
7/10 $$$$ Mark Restaurant by Jean Georges - 25 E 77th St. - See "Jean Georges" in Westside section below
---  Marché du Sud - CLOSED 
$ B Moulin à Café - 1439 York Avenue - Lunch and Brunch only; see chapter "Just for Lunch" above - 
--- Mon Petit Café - CLOSED
5/10 $$ Paname - 1068 Second Ave - Paname is slang for Paris but the location seems more NYC, as for the general comfort and pricing. Nothing bad in that if the Menu and Wine list were really Parisian or French. Actually, both are international  / Italian with few French names. The making is not bad but again, we are looking for real French stuff expecting at least 70% of French dishes.
5/10 $$ T Papillon - 22 East 54th St. - This superb restaurant is decorated and set as a club with 2 floors and a billard room. It honors the memory of Henri Charrière, a French convict that wrote the famous "Papillon" novel. Alas, the cuisine is not as good as the novel and French dishes are only a few on the menu; it is not the place for a real French meal or dinner. Prices are fair but the service is either hectic or snooty
7/10 $$+ B Orsay [P] - 1057 Lexington Avenue - This is a comfortable French brasserie, a bit less noisy than others mentioned in this blog. Designed by Jean Denoyer, "Orsay strikes that delicate balance between sophistication and warmth". The guests do not pay for the decor: prices are fair considering the area (UES). From the Planche de Charcuterie, the Escargots, the Foie Gras to the Sea Food platter, the Bouillabaisse or the Roasted Farm chicken, everything reminds of a Paris Brasserie. The La Goulue style Soufflé (from the restaurant on Madison Avenue) is amazing. The wine list can satisfy any palate and wallet. The service is efficient. 
--- Le ParisCLOSED 
6/10 $+ Pascalou - 1308 Madison Avenue - This small location makes you travel to France with detours: on the 3 dinner menus, beside several well prepared French dishes and Vegetarian courses, you find Peking Duck, Thai Chicken, Mozzarella & Tomatoes, Scottish Salmon, etc. Affordable prices and fair service go along with a nice attempt to make the place comfortable, thanks to table clothes and fabric benches. It is fine for dinner, if you are a couple or a small group of friends
--- La Petite Maison - CLOSED  Still open in Nice and London.
--- Le Périgord - CLOSED
6/10 $$ Quatorze Bis - 323 East 79th St. - Is it a Parisian restaurant or a Bouchon (Lyon restaurant)? Dressed with mirors, portraits, and leather benches, the restaurant is noisy when it is full, with a service sometimes hectic at pic hours. But they serve good old French dishes: Terrine, Saucisson de Lyon, Choucroute, Boeuf bourguignon, etc. Their classic French desserts are not exceptional nor bad. The Wine list is well done and fits most of the dishes. All prices match with the uptown area without excess. But it's very neighbor oriented and old clients pass first  Ph: 212 535-1414  No website 
5/10 $$ Rotisserie Georgette -  14 East 60th St. - You got to like birds if you want to eat a French style entrée at the "Rotisserie". Are the birds organic free-range? No information about that. The 2 founders names seem Greek or Lebanese but there is no Georgette. The  Wine list is as big as its pricing. Decor and service are nicer than the menu and you pay too high just for that!
7/10 $$ B Sel et Poivre [P] - 853 Lexington Ave - "A taste of Paris on Lexington"? True! This small French restaurant serves good old French dishes such as Country duck pâté, Fish soup, Escargots, Veal kidneys, Frog legs (from American frogs?), Orange Duck, and for desserts, Mousse au chocolat, Profiteroles, etc. If you like red wine, try the glass of Savigny les Beaunes; for the white, the Sancerre is great. The service is fine and prices are "competitive" for this uptown area. It's crowded Friday and Saturday evenings: you better have a reservation.
--- The Simone - 151 East 82nd St. - - Review coming soon
6/10 $$ Table d'Hôte - 44 East 92nd St. - In France, a Table d'hôte is a table in country houses or farms open to outside guests. Here also, the menu is simple with limited choice but the cuisine is generally good and prices are fair. This is a cute little restaurant with a family like ambiance. Since the seating is limited it is hard to have a table on the spur of the moment.
6/10 $+ La Tarte Flambée (Flammekueche in Alsatian) - 1750 2nd Avenue & 153 E 33rd St. - You will not find any Choucroute or Baeckeofe in this small Alsatian restaurant; for those 2 dishes, go to Café d'Alsace. But you can try one of their good Alsatian Tartes, savory or sweet way (they explain what the tarts are made of on their website). The location is "simple" with a small Alsatian touch, the service is casual and prices are fair. They have several nice beers including the French Kronenbourg but only few Alsatian wines; actually, it's enough to fit the Tarts from Eastern France 
7/10 $$$ Le Veau D'or [P] - 129 East 60th St. - Since 1937! It is the most ancient French restaurant in NYC. Grace Kelly was among the frequent customers. First, you have to find the location: it's very small. Don't fear the exterior appearance, just enter and discover a 50's little classy piece of France. Actually, you need a reservation: there are only 8 tables. The menu includes good old French dishes: Vichyssoise, Poireaux vinaigrette, Saucisson chaud (hot dry saussage), Frog legs, Tripes, Veal Scalopes, Duck with cherry sauce, etc., and among the desserts an amazing Ile Flottante (Floating island). The wine list is short but French! Don't mind the service that is not always efficient / courteous: just enjoy a fine food. Prices are a bit high ($30 / 40 a dish) but it's worth the spending. 212 838-8133  No website  Reservation recommended
7/10 $$$ Benoit of Alain Ducasse [P] - 60 West 55 St. (more like Midtown) - It is a real French brasserie: its big bro in Paris opened in 1912. The location has a nice classic decor with painted ceiling, as well as an efficient service. The French cuisine is enhanced by Alain Ducasse: we recommend the Paté en Croûte, Escargots or Tarte Flambée, then a real Cassoulet, the Loup de Mer or the tasty Quenelles de Brochet (Pike). For the dessert, the Mille feuille or Chocolate Soufflé are a good finale. The Wine list is interesting, unfortunately some of the good French crus are really too expensive. The prices are at the level of the quality and area: not cheap! If you organize a party, you have to reserve a room with a deposit Reservation recommended
6/10 $$ T La Bergamote [P] - 512 West 52nd St. & 177 9th Avenue - They are Pastry shop restaurants (1 with terrace) where you find some tasty French dishes such as Chèvre chaud (Hot goat cheese), Quiches, Salade Niçoise (really Niçoise!), Roast Duck, Sautéed Saint Jacques, etc. Since they primarily are Pastry shops, they have excellent pastries such as Concorde, Magellan, Opéra, etc. Prices are fair and the service is courteous. It's not for a grand dinner but it is worth having a meal there 
9/10 $$$$ Le Bernardin of Eric Ripert [P] - 155 West 51st St. - This is the place for a grande célébration but you got to love seafood! Chef Eric Ripert (Born on the French Riviera) makes all "Fruits de mer" (Sea fruits) exceptional, sometimes with an Asian or Italian or Spanish twist: Striped Bass Tartare, Baked Skate in Papillote, Langoustine Truffled, Lobster Carpaccio, Poached Turbo, etc. The superb decor and top service match the dinner menu / à la carte prices ($125 to $190 per person without the wine). However, you can enjoy some of the marvels in a less expensive way with the lunch menu ($75) or at the "Lounge". The wine cellar is abundant, exquisite, and pricey; the "Lounge" has a more moderate pricing by the glass. Reservation recommended; Informal attire
---  Bistro Citron CLOSED 
6/10 $$ Boite en Bois - 75 west 68th St. - This location near the Lincoln Center is tiny like a "boite" or box which makes hard to get a table and a fair service at pic / theater hours. The "pre theater" menu is large and very French. Dishes are generally good: try the Soupe de Poisson, Saucisson Chaud, the Lotte or the Veal Calf. For dessert, we recommend the Chocolate Mousse or the Tarte Tatin. The Wine list is satisfying. The prices are fair considering the area.
6/10 $$ T La Bonne Soupe [P] - 48 West 55th St. - It's a 2-floor simply decorated restaurant, with a small balcony (good luck to get a table there!) and several good French dishes: Onion Soup, Crêpes, Omelette Paysanne, Quiche, Filet Mignon, Fondue. The Chocolate Mousse and Tarte au Citron are nice when they are fresh! The Wine list is ok, a bit pricey, but they have a nice affordable red Moulin à Vent; we also appreciated their Armagnac de Ravignan 82. After 8 pm, the location gets noisy and narrow, the ambiance raises while the service becomes hectic. The prices are fair for the area. They welcome large groups but you better make the reservation in advance
5/10 $$ Brasserie Athenée - 300 West 46th St. - The word "Athenée" for hotels often means classy but for this case, I would rather use "Lottery". The menu includes a fair number of French dishes but the preparation is either good without panache or below average. The service is either fine or lousy, while the decor is average. The Gratinee and Chicken Livers are ok, not the Escargots! It's not the place for a Duck Leg Confit either, so better get a Ratatouille or simply the Steak Frites. The Sorbets are good, so is the Napoleon when it is fresh! The Wine list includes only few good French wines. Be aware that prices on the menu could be higher on the check. No Website  (212) 399-1100
--- Brasserie 8 1/2 - CLOSED 
--- Ca Va of Todd English - CLOSED  It was not French anyway!
6/10 $$  Café un deux trois [P] - 123 West 44th St. - Back a couple of years ago, we didn't like their cuisine. Lately, several scouts ate there a couple of times: they tried the Homard Bisque, Lamb Leg, Steak au Poivre, as well as the Crêpes Suzette and they were satisfied. For the wine, you better order by the glass: no  regret if you are not happy! The decor is nice and reminds of a Belle Epoque brasserie with chandeliers. The ambiance is pre-Theater like. Prices are fair and the staff is friendly "with a few exceptions" as 2 scouts told me. It is crowded and the service is hectic before theater opening.
--- $$++ Chez Joséphine (a tribute to Josephine Baker) - 414 W 42nd St. - Review coming soon -
7/10 $$ Chez Napoléon [P] - 365 West 50th St. - It's a small and fun decorated restaurant (Bric a Brac style) serving "bourgeois" dishes, a real French cuisine at competitive prices from an abundant menu. Try the Rillettes de canard, Escargots, Coq au vin, Ris de veau, or Bouillabaisse; their Soufflé is great as a dessert. Be cautious with the Menu Prix fixes (Fixed prices): it doesn't always has the same quality. The Wine list is not impressive but if you bring your own wine, you are only charged $20 for Corkage! Some say the service is lousy, others say it's fine; it was fine with us
4/10 $$ B French Roast - 2340 Broadway - 78 W 11th St. - Again the group "Tour de France": their Brasserie style locations and their dishes try - I insist "try" -  to be French. But it is not satisfying on the overall. Both locations decor is simple as for the service. It's convenient for lunch but we would not go there for a dinner, nor for the Wine list. Only one good point: the pricing is fair.
8/10 $$$ / $$$$ Jean-Georges [P] of J. G. Vongerichten - 1 Central Park West and at the Mark Hotel - Jean-Georges Vongerichten is Alsatian and an artist! You first have to select one of his restaurants then make a reservation. The original "Jean-Georges" is exclusive and expensive but at the same address "Nougatine" is a bit more affordable. The restaurant at the Mark Hotel is alike the original "Jean-Georges" but a bit smaller. The smaller restaurant "Jojo" is a casual version more affordable (see below). All have weekly Fixed Price Menus that allow your wallet to survive. They all serve a very creative cuisine, although not totally French. "Nougatine" proposes a great Lobster Burger and a marvelous caramelized Beef Tenderloin. The warm Chocolate Cake and Strawberry Shortbread whipped cream (Chantilly) are heaven. The service, wines and prices are at the level of the "grande" quality and of the decor. A couple of scouts were not deeply impressed by the cuisine but yet, they say it is worth the experience and the spending Reservation mandatory; Informal attire / Habillé
---  Jeanne et Gaston - CLOSED - Chef Godard is still operating Madison Bistro (See below)
8/10 $$+ Jojo - 160 East 64th St. - This is a more casual and more affordable version of Jean-Georges restaurants. - - See above "Jean-Georges".
---  Le Madeleine - CLOSED
6/10 $$+ Le Marais - 150 West 46th St. - You better like meat: Le Marais is a Steak House, actually more American than French; still, there are 2 or 3 dishes based on fish. Business men and women (there are several banks around) come for lunch or stay for dinner. Prices are bit high for their best pieces of meat such as Entrecôte or Côte de Boeuf, but real good fries French style are included! The desserts made with chocolate are devine. The cellar list has only few French wines and is too pricey for the overall quality. The decor is "soft" and classic, the service is professional but it is not for a romantic dinner. Reservation recommended for dinner
4/10 $$ Le Monde - 2885 Broadway - Loire Valley cuisine? Alike other restaurants of "Tour de France" (Maison, Pigalle, Nice Matin), Le Monde does not serve the regional cuisine they announced: the Bouillabaisse, Cassoulet, Coq au Vin, Escargots are NOT from the Valley. But Andouillette, Butter Asparagus, River Perch in white wine, Roast Game are from there and yet not found on their menu, except for the Rillettes. Beside, the food they serve is not always tasty. The service is basic. C'est un monde! (That too much!)
4/10 $$+ Nice Matin - 201 West 79th St. - From Nice? (Nice Matin is a newspaper). Another "Tour de France" restaurant that misses the target: the chef is probably not from Nice or forgot his/her origins: half of the dishes are not Niçoises, the rest is from? The Bouillabaisse doesn't taste "Provençale" nor the Pistou soup, while Escargots are originally from Burgundy and there is no Trout in Nice region (They have Sardines)! Service and decor are basically ok but some prices are unjustified: $35 for a small Steak Béarnaise? (a recipe from the Bearn region by the way, not from Nice)
---  Petrossian - CLOSED  Their store is still open at 911 7th Avenue 
6/10 $$ Poulette - 426 Amsterdam Avenue & Hell's Kitchen - Chicken, more chicken French style "rotisserie" but free range and without hormones! A small variety of dishes in a simple location. Prices are fair for NYC. Nice food to take out, not to eat on site.
--- $ Le Rivage - 340 W 46th St. - Review coming soon -
3/10 $$ Rue 57 - 60 West 57th St. - A "Brasserie Parisienne" with a huge Shushi bar? Then it's should be ストリート 57 (Street 57 in Japanese)! Only 6 so called French dishes are featured on a menu of over 30 dishes. It's crowded with tourists so waiters don't care if you (New Yorkers) are satisfied or not. The decor is basic. It is not the place for a real (French) meal.
--- $$+  Saju - 120 W 44th St. - Review coming soon -  
8/10  $$$ La Sirène - 416 Amsterdam Ave - The original restaurant is in Broome St. (see Downtown chapter) This is the 2nd newly opened location. Marseillais chef owner Didier Pawlicki makes southern cuisine singing high tunes. The menu, much bigger than the location, is a festival: Roasted Pear melted Blue Cheese, Sautéed Baby Octopus with Garlic, Roasted Beets on green Salad with Brie, Gratin of baked Seafood Mornay sauce, Sliced Pork Tenderloin with Morels & Port Wine creamed sauce, Kassulet (signature name Cassoulet), etc. For a great ending: Cannelé Cake with coffee & Rhum sauce, Choux Chantilly, 3-flavor Sorbet cup, etc. The Wine list is abundant in good French wines. The service and decor are "bon Marseillais" - cool Marseille style. The prices are not cool but it's really worth the spending! Cash & Amex Only 
7/10 $$ Vin sur Vingt [P] - Several locations - The name Wine on Twenty is a play-word: Vingt sur Vingt or 20 / 20 is the top grade in French schools, almost accurate for this Wine Bar chain. In most of the locations, the decor and ambiance remind of a Paris Latin Quarter restaurant. It has a sufficent French menu and a fine list of French wines: 20 red, 20 white and few sparkling wines can be tasted by the glass or bottle. Some wines are fine, others are just ok. If you liked a particular wine, make sure to enjoy it this time: their Wine list is continuously rotating. Price are fair considering the generous pours and friendly service. You could have to wait for a table at pic hours.
Our Grades1/10 Bad; 5/10 Average; 7/10 Nice; 10/10 Fabulous.
$ Moderate  $$ NYC average  $$$ High  $$$$ Outch!   B Nice Brunch  T Terrace
5/10 $$ Artisanal [P] - 2 Park Avenue - "NY Best French Restaurant"? Come on! It is a classic brasserie by the prices and service, while real French dishes count only for 40 % of the menu. The Fixed Price Menu is worth it but they add $ for cheese! The Plateaux (trays) of seafood are great although a bit too pricey. By the way, "Plateau" is masculine: it's Petit (no "e") - Grand (no "e"); you should know that if you are the best as you say! The cheeses selection is large, including nice products from France along other nationalities'. The Wine list is international with only few good French wines, some of them too pricey! They have a small list of desserts: the warm Chocolate Tart is good and they nicknamed their Profiteroles "Sundae" because they are not real Profiteroles. 
6/10 $$+ Balthazar [P] - 80 Spring St. - It is a well known "typical brasserie" where you go to be stamped as a "Parisian New Yorker": Balthazar is noisy, its tables are narrow and the service is often hectic around 8 pm. If you are lucky you could be sitting near a "famous" person. Nevertheless, several dishes should satisfy your palate but not always your wallet: Frisée aux lardons, Brandade, Escargots, Moules frites, Steak au poivre, and a good baguette, also sold at their bakery stand. The grand seafood plateau is enough for 2, although it is pricey. For desserts: let yourself tempted by the Tarte Tatin or the Profiteroles. The wines are generally fine and affordable by the glass
7/10 $$ Brasserie Cognac [P] - 1740 Broadway - The manager is Italian but he seems really to love France. The decor is nice and the seating comfortable. Several dishes match their French name and we can recommend the Terrine of Duck Liver, Gougères (Burgundy fluffy cheese bread), the Chicken, Cassoulet, Sea Scallops and for desserts the Tarte Tatin. The Wine list is impressive. The staff is generally courteous. The prices are fair but not for the "Specials". The restaurant is crowded at theater hours
6/10 $$+ T Brasserie Ruhlmann - 45 Rockefeller Plaza - Brasserie is a French word but in this case the menu is only half of it. However, the chef from France knows how to cook the few French dishes and know about French desserts. The small selection of French cheeses is nice. The decor is classic, the service can be hectic at pic hours, and the location is often crowded. You are lucky when you can sit at the terrace in summer. The Wine list is large but prices are at Rockefeller level.
--- $$+ Coq Rico - 30 East 20 st. - - Review coming soon
4/10 $ La Carafe - 653 9th Avenue - Is it a small (noisy) NY wine bar or a tiny (noisy) Mediterranean restaurant? French posters on the walls do not reflect the cuisine: the dishes are mostly Italian and Spanish without panache. The wine quality is as cheap as the prices. The service often lacks of care! Website down  212 333-5300
---  Dans le Noir NY CLOSED - 3 other restaurants worldwide
6/10 $$ Les Deux Amis - 356 East 51st St. - The 2 friends, probably not 100% French, have a charming place with a comfy setting, a friendly service and a good cuisine. But why the Spanish music in background? The menu is small but "generous" enough: Escargots, Moules, Duck, Steak au poivre, etc. And they serve a "Vol au Vent" which is rare in NYC! Kabyle Couscous are not French (although it is often served in France) but it is a good alternative to all other classic dishes. The few desserts are equal in quality to the main dishes. All that at fair prices! The Wine list is satisfying by the choice and pricing. Please guys, correct your website: it is "Vins" not "Vines" -
7/10 $+ L'Entrecote at Le Relais de Venise - 589 Lexington Ave (52nd St.) - It is a French steak house, cousin to the famous Paris "Entrecote", also found in London. The only dish on the $30 Fixed Price menu (without wine) is a fine Sirloin steak with a nice sauce and great French fries! It comes with a nice green salad Mustard sauce as appetizer. Then you have a choice of fine French desserts at fair price. The wine list is short but satisfying per the glass. The decor seems of a nice Paris Brasserie, the service is efficient and the pricing is fair because of large portions.
5/10 $$ Fig & Olive [P] - Several restaurants in the NY area - Chef Pascal Lorange brings Méditerannée into your plate. Actually, dishes are mostly Italian and Spanish, however the Salade niçoise, the Rosemary lamb shop, the Lemon Sole papillote are Provençal style. But since menus vary from a location to another, the few French dishes could not be on the list. The decor is agreeable as for the casual service but some locations have few tables with a lot of bar seating: a better fit for a lunch than for a real dinner. Prices are fair but too high for some hot dishes. Wines are from around the world with only few French ones that are too pricey.  Menus hard to find on their site
6/10 $$+ Gaby at Sofitel - 45 W44th St. -  Gaby is an Art Deco-inspired restaurant at the Sofitel hotel featuring contemporary cuisine. It is a little piece of France for the hotel less for the cuisine: A la carte prices are too high for the limited choice in French dishes. However, the decor, the quality of dishes and the service help a bit to "digest" the bill. If you go there, we would recommend the Fisherman Marmitte, the Angus Filet Mignon, and Profiteroles. Wines are matching the style and prices.
---  $$$ Gabriel Kreuther - 40 W 42nd St. - Review coming soon -
6/10 $$ B Les Halles [P] Park Avenue CLOSED but 15 John St. location is still open (See Downtown Chapter) -
7/10 $$+ Jubilée - 948 First Avenue - The place is quiet, the decor is warm and cozy, the service is courteous most of the time; perhaps all this explains why average customers are over 60 years old. The menu is classic French except for Dorado a la Plancha and Porcini Ravioli. We recommend the Snails Cassolette,  Frisée, Dover Sole, Pork Shop, and Moules Farcies. For dessert, the Soufflé or the Gratin de Framboise are a great ending. The Wine list is superb. All price are fair although the Appetizers are a bit too pricey
7/10 $$ Madison Bistro [P] of Claude Godart - 238 Madison Ave - Burgundy Chef Claude Godard as a passion in cooking. Dishes are French country style and everything is well prepared. Let you tempted by the Crispy Goat Cheese, Foie Gras, Stuffed Sole Filets, Pike Quenelles, Braised Bourguignon Beef, or Duck Confit. For dessert, we keep in mind the Frozen Nougat Parfait and Paris Brest cake! The Wine list is not too pricey, even for the fine Crus of the Reserve such as Volnay Vieilles Vignes or Chablis les Preuses. The decor is simple, a bit oldish. The service is overall satisfying and the prices are fair; the Fixed Price menu (without wine) is a good deal. Reservation recommended for dinner.
---  Maison - CLOSED 
5/10 $$+ Matisse - 924 Second Ave (at 47th) - It is a casual restaurant, without any painting of Matisse but with pictures of actor M. Mastroianni and landscapes. The service is efficient thanks to a Latin American waiter who does a great job, while the 2 other (French ladies) just chat at the bar after taking orders. The menu is appropriate but the cuisine is not great: the Pâté and Onion soup were so so, we liked their Steak Tartare and Lamb Shank, not the Boeuf Bourguignon (In Burgundy, it never comes with Pastas!) while the Sole fish was too buttery fat. For dessert, the Profiterolles and Crème Brulee were honest, not the Ile flottante. Pricing is NY style, a bit too high though considering the overall quality 
5/10 $$ T Marseille [P] - 630 9th Avenue - "Tour de France" chain is not French and this place, as for their other 4 NY restaurants, serves only few dishes from the corresponding region: Fish soup, Bouillabaisse, and Couscous (yes, Marseille has a large North African community). The quality of the cuisine is just ok. Don't go there for wine, even Rosé: they mostly serve beers. Prices and service are NY brasserie style, while the decor seems coming from Algier. They have 3 tables in terrace
---  Millesimes - CLOSED 
9/10 $$$++ Nomad of Daniel Humm - Nomad Hotel, 1170 Broadway (There is a another Nomad in NYC serving Spanish food) - Holala! The restaurant of the Nomad Hotel is not French and the Chef Daniel Humm is Swiss but they really deserves to be in this blog: the cuisine with French flair and flavor is exceptional! We will not recommend any dish since everything is sublime. We had the opportunity to taste several samples: it was amazing. Nomad Wine list is one of the most impressive we have seen in a NY restaurant. The prices are impressive too but it's fair considering the top quality! The décor is elegant and the service is perfect. Chef Humm was nominated Grand Relais & Chateaux in 2008, and the Michelin Guide attributed 3 stars to his previous restaurant Reservation recommended
--- Opia - CLOSED
6/10 $+ Le Parisien - 163 East 33rd St. - This is a little piece of France on 33rd Street! The cuisine is good as for the Duck paté, Escargots, Mussels, Skate and Confit. We will not get upset because of other nationalities in the menu! The service is friendly and prices are fair from Appetizers to Wine. Don't expect Versailles, it's Parisian and tiny and you need to reserve your table!
6/10 $$$$ Per Se - 10 Columbus Circle - Some people talk about this location as a reference, the place to try, one of NY top notch, etc. Yes, Per Se could be one of these top classy French restaurants with superb decor, impressive cuisine, fine service and of course pricing going through the roof. But there is a problem: Per Se is not French! By the way, some clients say it's not anymore exceptional
--- Pigalle - CLOSED  (Tour de France, a US group - 4 other restaurants)
1/10 $ Réunion Surf Bar - 44th St. & 9th Ave - It's supposed to be about the beautiful  French island of Réunion, but here réunion means meeting! This restaurant is more like a weird bar owned by someone who loves surf. They serve cocktails and some kind of hamburgers .. not the Réunion cuisine!
6/10 $$ Tout va bien - 311 West 51st St. - Everything goes almost well (Tout va presque bien), depends on the hour because Broadway is nearby. The location is small, fun casual decorated, and the service is generally convivial. The cuisine is French and good, not exceptional, with few mistakes. We didn't like the Escargots but the Saucisson Brioche and Scallops were nicely done. The kidneys, Calf liver, the Veal and the Sole fish are pretty good. For desserts try a Peche Melba or a Caramel Custard. The Wines list is acceptable without great wines. The overall pricing including for the Fixed price Menu is fair and at the level of the cuisine quality.
--- Villard Bistro - CLOSED
7/10 $$ Amélie - 22 West 8th St. - This is the sister of Amélie in San Francisco: a Wine bar with French flair including a large restaurant section. The Wine list is long and well selected with some good French wines among other origins; but it is confusing: the White Wine section includes a Rosé and goes from Country names to Grapes Names. Side of the kitchen, the Mussels, Tuna Tartar, Chicken Mousse, Raviolis de Royan, and the Cheeses are great. For dessert: why not a Chocolate Fondant with Champagne? Prices are low during the happy hour then go up quickly. The casual service and cool atmosphere are fine enough for a Wine bar.
6/10 $$ B T  AOC (Aile Ou Cuisse) [P] - 314 Bleecker St. - AOC normally means "Appellation d'Origine Controlée" for wines but their Wine list doesn't fit. So Aile ou Cuisse (wing or drumstick) is the right choice. A fair number of dishes are French and basically good: the Salade Chèvre chaud, Salade Niçoise, Croustillant, Coq au Vin, etc. The Jarret d'Agneau is alike a Moroccan Couscous. But Escargots with Pastis sauce and Grand Marnier in Confit: that's wrong! The French cheeses selection is satisfying and the Crème Brulée is tasty. For a brunch, try the Feuille de Briques. Price are fair while the decor is simple but they have a back garden very nice in summer. The service is casual efficient. There was no connection with AOC Bistro in Brooklyn (Closed).
--- Antibes - CLOSED  
--- L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon - 85 10th Avenue - Reopening beginning of November - Review & site coming soon.
6/10 $+ B T La Bergamote [P] - 512 West 52nd St. & 177 9th Avenue - They are Pastry shop restaurants (1 with terrace) where you find some tasty French dishes such as Chèvre chaud (Hot goat cheese), Quiches, Salade Niçoise (really Niçoise!), Roast Duck, Sautéed Saint Jacques, etc. Since they primarily are Pastry shops, they have excellent pastries such as Concorde, Magellan, Opéra, etc. Prices are fair and the service is courteous. It's not for a grand dinner but it is worth having a meal there 
7/10 $$ B Bagatelle - 1 Little West 12th St. - Bagatelle is an elegant part of Bois de Boulogne near Paris. In NY, it is a large chic restaurant with graffiti decor and comfortable seating. It has cousins around the world including in Saint Tropez. The menu proposes several great French dishes such as Petits Burgers de Foie Gras, Tarte aux 2 Saumons, Tournedos de Lotte (Monk fish), Canard a l'orange et citronelle, etc. The desserts are great particularly the Beignets de Bagatelle and Dark Chocolate Mousse. The Wines list is well set but expensive. The service for dinner is without fault. Prices are matching the quality but you won't regret the spending. There, people dance and party at Brunch hours.  Bagatelle is also in Dubai, Miami, Monte Carlo, St Barth, Sao Paulo, and St Tropez.
6/10 $$$$ Bouley - 163 Duane St. - David Bouley, born in Connecticut, learned cooking in France but its cuisine is not French, despite a "French Approach" as mentioned on his site. It is actually more of a fine creative American / Asian / "new cuisine". But even with the exquisite decor and service, asking $185 for 6 "dish samples" is abusive!
8/10 $+ T Buvette [P] - 42 Grove St. and a cousin in Paris - Buvettes are tiny popular bars in French villages and this NY location fits the description. But this Buvette has a back dining room where you must get a table. The owner Chef Jody William certainly loves French cuisine: despite some American or Italian dishes in her small menu, most of her dishes are French, home made country style or creative and very good! Check her website to discover what she is preparing at the moment and get a reservation, you will not regret it! She doesn't serve any French cheese (why?) but no shortage for the French wines! As a bonus, Buvette has wine festivals & presentations. Don't go there for a formal meal, just enjoy the cool ambiance, friendly service and fair prices
--- $$$ Le Coucou - 138 Lafayette St. - Review coming soon -
4/10 $$ Café Gitane - 113 Jane St. & 242 Mott St. - More a Soho style café-bar than a French restaurant, it's a place where beginner artists and models hang out, drinking a tea or eating a salad. Only a couple of dishes are kind of French. It is not for a real meal.
6/10 $$ Café Loup - 105 west 13th St. - It is a cool French American blending for the decor and ambiance, with live music several times a week. Most of the dishes on the menu are French creative: Escargots in home-made sauce, Salade Lyonnaise, Grilled Tuna, Chicken Tarragon and a nice Crème Renversée dessert. The Wine list is limited and doesn't include any Beaujolais, which is weird for a restaurant mentioning the "Ordre des Compagnons du Beaujolais". Prices are fair, although a bit too high for the Entrées and the Fixed Price menu. The service is sometimes hectic.
5/10 $$ Café Luxemboug - 200 west 70th St. - This is a NY French style restaurant / brasserie without any surprise, good or bad. The seating is comfortable, the service is efficient, the décor is basically "clean". The menu too is basically French without superb from appetizers to desserts. The Wine list is well composed and ample, although they should not mix Pinot Noir and Gamay! All prices are quite fair. The place is ok for a classic meal but not to impress your guest -
6/10 $$ Cantine Parisienne - 40 Kenmare St. - If all Cantines (French school cafeterias) were so nicely & modern-style decorated and serving such a variety of food, I would go back to school! The Rillettes, Beet Salad & hot Goat cheese and Foie Gras are very French, the Taragon Chicken, Veal Scallop, and Pesto Pastas are excellent. For desserts, you can trust the Lemon Tart and the White Chocolate Mousse. The Wine list is limited - no top wines - but the pricing is honest. The service needs some training.
--- Cercle Rouge - CLOSED
--- Chez Jacqueline - CLOSED  ??  Weird, their webiste is still up and running
5/10 $$ T Cocotte - 110 Thompson St. - This is a small restaurant with funny decoration. Despite Cocotte is a French kid nickname for little chicken, they serve a limited menu blending French south-western / Basque / Spanish style dishes, but you will not find Basquaise chicken, Paella nor Piperade. Prices and service are fair but it is not for a real dinner. Neighbors could probably enjoy a dish there once a while. 
--- Corton - CLOSED  
--- $$ Dominique Bistro - 14 Christopher St. (West Village) - Review coming soon -
4/10 $$ L'Express [P] - 249 Park Ave. South - Another restaurant "Tour de France" that doesn't serve the original dishes of the region: Lyon people would not agree with their claim as a "Bouchon", Lyon style restaurant. It's more a basic NY brasserie: noisy, narrow tables for 2, service hectic around 8 pm. The "Specialites Lyonnaises" are not Lyonnaise: Escargot Bourguignonne (it should be Bourguignons) are from Burgundy, their Onion tart from Lorraine, and the Tripes are Normandy style. Only the Quenelles could be from Lyon region. There are no real Lyon dishes such as Tablier de sapeur, Saucisson de Lyon, Blanquette or Petit Salé! Don't go there for a French wine either. The prices are fair but what's the point anyway?
4/10 $$ Félix - 340 West Broadway - It was a nice French restaurant 10 years ago but not anymore! Several of the dishes seem like rewarmed frozen stuff, the Confit is not really confit, the Béarnaise is a warmish liquid, etc. The seating and decor are acceptable while the service has some ups and down at pic hours. Besides, 2 of our scouts has a bad surprise with the check: much more expensive than expected (compared to the pricing on the menu) and no visa or master card! You still can go there for the music though Amex or Cash only
5/10 $+ French Roast - 78 W 11th St. - 2340 Broadway - Again the group "Tour de France": this Brasserie style location and dishes try to be French but it is not really satisfying on the overall. Both locations decor is simple as for the service. It's convenient for lunch but we would not go there for dinner, nor for the Wine. The pricing is fair.
6/10 $$ Le Gigot (Lamb Leg) - 18 Cornelia St. - It is a small, romantic restaurant / wine bar, with a cool ambiance that you could find in Paris, Saint Germain des Près. A reservation is required at pic hours! If you don't like Lamb leg (by the way, it lost a bit of its quality lately), there are good alternative: Escargots, Frisée, Duck Confit, Bouillabaisse. The Crab Cakes are ok but not French! For desserts, the Banane Flambée or the Chocolate Cake are good ending. The Wine list is small but can match any of the dishes. The service is friendly while the pricing is NYC style. Amex / Cash only
6/10 $$ B T  Les Halles [P] - 15 John St. - Park Avenue location CLOSED. Chef Bourdain's cuisine is good and the menu is abundant. We recommend the Escargots, Croutons de Coulommiers, Saint Jacques, Filet Béarnaise, Hamburger Rossini, and Duck Confit. The Cote de Boeuf is fabulous. Sorry, nothing much for a diet / vegetarian. For desserts, the Crêpes Suzette and the Chocolate mousse are great. The Wine list is correct, perhaps a bit too pricey and with a lack of Burgundy red. The ambiance is Brasserie style, the service is descent and prices are fair.
6/10 $$ T Jules Bistro - 65 Saint Marks Place - Another restaurant of the Group George Forgeois. It seems alike a Saint Germain des Près Jazz bistro in the 70's, with permanent noise, people moving around, and small tables with candles, and posters. Their classic French dishes such as Gratinée, Rillettes, Raie, Onglet, Cassoulet and the nice dessert Café Liègeois go well with the Jazz bands playing every night. The Wine list is ok but a bit too pricey as for the food. The service can be hectic at pic hours and the Fixed Price Menu is a secret on their website. The terrace has only 2 tables but you got "free" jazz!
--- Lyon - CLOSED 
5/10 $$+ Le Midi - 11 East 13th St. - This restaurant Le Midi (nickname for Southern France) is not typical and has only few Provençal and Mediterranean dishes: it is more a wine bar restaurant considering the huge list of beverages and the flashing bar. Nothing bad in the overall cuisine but it is certainly not the place to experience the real southern French cuisine. The décor is modern and certainly not romantic. The Wine list is long with some good French wines at fair prices. The service is ok with few mistakes at pic hours. A couple of prices on the menu are too high.
--- Le Philosophe - CLOSED 
--- $$ Le Village - 127 East 7th St. - Review coming soon -   
--- $$$ Lucien - 14 1st Avenue - Review coming soon - 
5/10 $$ Parigot - 155 Grand St. - Parigot means Parisian in popular slang. It's the case for this restaurant: casual, with a basic decor and simple seating. The menu is huge but if you remove the non-French dishes, it becomes average in size and prices - some meat / viande dishes are too pricey. Nothing bad, nothing breath-taking from the kitchen! The Wine list is great with honest prices while the service is ok.
6/10 $$+ T Pastis - 9 Ninth Ave - This brasserie / bar mixes French and American cuisine but they have several good French dishes: Onion soup, Moules frites, Tripes gratinées, Farcis niçois, etc. The fine desserts such as Profiteroles or Tart Tatin are not on their site (why?). A couple of dishes are a bit too pricey. The Wine list is satisfying with fair prices even for top French wines. The service is pleasant. The location is convenient for a party or a celebration and there is a terrace
7/10 $$ PMF (Pardon My French) - 103 Avenue B - PMF, former Casimir, is a nice place to enjoy good French cuisine with a few foreign accents; the Chef is Brazilian French. This is a simple but convivial location, a bit loud at pic hours, with an efficient service provided by French waiters. Several dishes really deserve to be tasted: Accras de Morue, Vol au vent, Os a moelle, Canard, and Filet de Bar. The desserts are international while the Crepes soufflées are French typical. The Wine list is well done and all prices are fair. Better arriving before 7:30 pm.     
5/10 $$ Poulette - 790 9th Ave (Hell's Kitchen) & on Amsterdam Ave - Chicken, more chicken French style "rotisserie" but free range and without hormones! A small variety of dishes in a simple location. Prices are NYC style. Nice food to take out, not to eat on site. 
6/10 $$ Raclette - 195 Avenue A - This restaurant is too small for a comfortable dinner or for a party of more than 3. Don't expect a large menu with French dishes and wines; they only serve Swiss Raclette and Croque-Monsieurs. But everything is fresh and good. The pricing is honest but you help yourself at the counter.
6/10 $$ T Le Singe Vert [P] - 160 7th Ave - The Green Monkey - a name you don't forget - is a "squared" restaurant with a simple decor and fair service. The dishes are all French classic: Cassoulet, Raie au beurre noir, Moules Marinières, Profiteroles, etc. The cuisine is "good average" and the prices are moderate. Le Singe hosts musical events several times a month therefore it can be noisy and certainly not romantic. You can have a great casual time with friends, a dish and a glass of good red Bordeaux wine. The terrace is small
8/10 $$$ La Sirène [P] - 558 Broome St. - Now also 416 Amsterdam Ave (See Westside Chapter). Size doesn't matter: La Sirène is a tiny restaurant but Marseillais chef owner Didier Pawlicki makes southern cuisine singing high tunes. The menu, much bigger than the location, is a festival: Roasted Pear melted Blue Cheese, Sautéed Baby Octopus with Garlic, Roasted Beets on green Salad with Brie, Gratin of baked Seafood Mornay sauce, Sliced Pork Tenderloin with Morels & Port Wine creamed sauce, Kassulet (signature name Cassoulet), etc. For a great ending: Cannelé Cake with coffee & Rhum sauce, Choux Chantilly, 3-flavor Sorbet cup, etc. The Wine list is abundant in good French wines. The service and decor are "bon Marseillais" - cool Marseille style. The prices are not cool but it's really worth the spending! Cash & Amex Only
7/10 $+ T Tartine - 253 West 11th St. - Tartine is a tiny restaurant, simply decorated with few tables, a limited service, and not any wine. But they serve really good French dishes, all tasty and fresh: Escargots, Gratin Goat Cheese on Toast, Warm Onion Tart, Mussels, Steak au Poivre, etc. They propose dishes rarely found elsewhere: Grilled Saucisson, Bouchée à la Reine (Mushrooms & Chicken creamy Pie), Boeuf Mignonette, and a yummy Dark Chocolate Mousse Praline. The pricing is moderate. The small terrace is open by fair weather.
6/10 $$ Taureau - 558 Broome St. - It is the same group that owns La Sirène restaurants. But it is not the same size, style and ambiance: Taureau or Bull serves various type of fondues, all good and / or interesting in taste. The service is casual, prices are fair, and the Wine list fits the different fondues. It is fun to go there in group of 4 or 5 but you need a reservation - Their site doesn't give any information (?) 
--- $$ Le Tocqueville - 1 E 15th St. - Review Coming soon -
--- $$ Vin et Fleurs - 69 Thompson St. - Review coming soon -
---  AOC Bistro - CLOSED   AOC in Manhattan is open & running - See above.
6/10 $$ T Bacchus - 409 Atlantic Avenue - Bacchus is a small French wine bar restaurant. This is a simply decorated location with a private patio. Despite Zagat good grades, their Wine list is really limited for a wine bar and they have a too small choice by the glass. But several French dishes such as the Rillettes, Brandade, Raie, and Poitrine de Porc are very good. Why categorizing as "Tapas" instead of Amuse-Bouches a Warm Brie on Toast? The desserts are classic but well prepared. The service is casual efficient and prices are fair; the Fixed Price Menu is satisfying
5/10 $$ Le Barricou - 533 Grand St. - This simply decorated country restaurant has several communal tables which means you have to share if there is no private tables available. It also features a wine lounge and a fireplace. The small menu includes classic French dishes at fair prices such as Pâté, Escargots, Coq au Vin, Rôti de Porc, nothing exceptional, nothing bad. Along the cheeses, you could hope for desserts but the menu provides only 5 choices. Can you get a nice pastry from Marquet Patisserie, cousin to the restaurant? Depends on the day! The Wine list is limited in good names and a bit too pricey for Brooklyn. The service is either decent or hectic: good luck!
5/10 $$ T Bar Tabac [P] - 128 Smith St. - In France, "Bar-Tabacs" are not restaurants, but this one in NY is. However, the outside appearance could be of a Parisian Bar-Tabac. Part of the Group George Forgeois (Cercle Rouge, Jules Bistro, Ceci-Cela, etc), it is cool and fun, not chic. Only few of the dishes seem prepared by a French chef: the Duck salad, Daube de Boeuf, and Moules Marinières. The dessert menu is small and a bit disappointing. The Wine list doesn't give any of producer names: trust your instinct and good luck! The service is correct and prices are generally fair. 2 good points: they have jazz 4 times a week and a small terrace Cash / Amex only
--- Belleville - CLOSED
8/10 $$ Bistro Petit - 170 S 3rd St. - Really "Petit", this restaurant is cute but doesn't include real tables; so I would call it a food bar. But what a cuisine! Korean Chef Sung Park marries French and Korean recipes and the result is fabulous: Foie Gras Prune Mousse, Kimchi Bouillabaisse, Korean Beef Bourguignon, etc. The affordable menu is small and also includes a few classic dishes, as well as Croque Monsieur, Organic Mesclin, Vegetarian Frittata and a Kobe Burger. There is no desserts nor wine but it's not a miss. You pick up your order and enjoy a great meal at one of the wall tables with stools.
--- Café Lafayette - CLOSED 
--- $$ La Cigogne - 215 Union St. - - Review coming soon
--- $$ Le P'tit Paris Bistro - 256 Prospect Park W -  - Review coming soon
6/10 $$ B T Provence en Boite [P] - 263 Smith St. - If you like clichés about the French you will like this simple restaurant pastry shop: small tables, waiters in beret, simple French dishes, and French service (come on, it's not always bad!). But it is not a location for a romantic dinner. The cuisine quality is a bit "surprise of the chef" but people are generally satisfied by the Bouillabaisse or Cassoulet. Keep some space for the pastries: they are really tasty. For the wine, don't expect miracles nor any good Burgundy. Prices are NY style whatever dishes or wines you order. Why a Sterling sign instead of $?
** QUEENS **
--- Bistro 33 - CLOSED
--- $+ Côté Soleil - 50-12 Sillkman Ave, Woodside - Review coming soon -
5/10 $ Café Triskell [P] - 30-04 36th Ave, in Astoria - It is a small and very simple location that serves French dishes, some of them from the Brittany region. Actually, only the Crêpes (savory and sweet) are worth a visit: they are good, the flour is organic and vegetarians are not forgotten. Don't go there for wine. The owner from Brittany is also waiter and does his best when all tables have customers. Prices are fair but not low enough considering the overall quality. Café Triskell is fine for a lunch, not for a real dinner.  Weird advertisement on the home page!
5/10 $ B T Tournesol [P] - 50 12 Vernon Blvd, Long Island City - It's a simple French restaurant with simple service. Curiously, the menu for lunch is large with few French dishes while for dinner more French dishes show up on a smaller menu. The Tartelette de Saumon (Salmon) and the Duck Magret are fine. Check also their Plats du Jour (Daily dishes) that are generally good. Prices are fair, although the few good wines are too pricey. They have a small terrace. Cash / Amex only
7/10 $$ B Brasserie Persil [P] - 2825 Long Beach Road, in Oceanside - If you are in the middle of Long Island, you still can eat French. Although it's an American owned restaurant, most dishes are French and good: you could particularly enjoy the Onion soup, Escargots, Moules Marinières, Orange duck, Sole meunière, and Crêpes Suzette. The Wine list includes a large French selection; the "Grand crus" are too expensive (We do not always agree with the comments on their site) but they have some good wines at affordable prices. The decoration is simple but comfy, and even with a small space the service is efficient. Prices are "honest" except for a couple of hot dishes.
5/10 $$ T Le Jardin Restaurant - 1257 River Road, Edgewater; NJ - Located along the Hudson River, looking over Manhattan, Le Jardin is not French despite the name. Only the Noix de Saint Jacques could be a French dish, everything else is basic American bar menu. However, the view is absolutely sumptuous and the garden is marvelous in summer. The service and prices are fair; the Fixed Price Menu is only available Monday to Thursday. There is live Piano music Friday and Saturday evenings
7/10 $$ Chez Vero - Florham Park, Montclair, NJ - This is not a restaurant but it deserves to be on this list: a very nice little catering business delivering fine "home made" French dishes for dinners and parties. The French Institute, Montclair branch, always orders there which is a good reference. You need to call them for the menu: it is frequently changing and they have specials for parties. They also organize cooking classes. (201) 289-0356  

Coming soon
Boston, D.C., Chicago, L.A., New Orleans, San Francisco, etc.
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