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Les Halles - Anyone been recently


iainpb
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I'm visiting NYC in August and am planning on visiting Les Halles (Park Avenue) but have seen reports over the last 12 months that say it's not what it used to be. Is it still worth a visit?

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No one goes there any more; it's too crowded... :smile: .

Seriously, though - it has been a long time since I've been, or anyone else that I know has been. Are you interested in dining there because of its "connection" to a chef who went on to become a celebrity?

Because if that's the case, I think you'd have better food at any of the Batali establishments.

And if you want to deal with the madness and insanity for the NY experience, go to Balthazar - you'll have better food too.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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Main reason for wanting to visit is I have the Les Halles cookbook, I like the food in it (and would like to see how it should taste!) and I like the way the restaurant is described. We picked Park Ave because it was the original restaurant, nothing to do with Bourdain himself.

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I was there last September, dinner and breakfast, and both meals were pleasantly memorable, if not awe-inspiring. Dinner was an extremely decent cassoulet, (filling enough that it was the only thing I had), and breakfast involved a quite good croissant and coffee (I also pick up breakfast to take away from the downtown location, fairly often). Dinner is insanely crowded, it can be hard to hear yourself speak, but at breakfast you may be alone in the dining room.

Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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It's several years since I was there, but I had a similar curiosity about that kind/level of French food. Of course there are better places to eat in NY, but we went nonetheless and enjoyed it. However, as someone else who has the cookbook, I think I cook their frites better (using the recipe in the book) than they do. It was an odd experience from that perspective, but we enjoyed it.

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That cookbook is a contender for the best cookbook in recent years

Absolutely! The lamb daube provencial is still one of my favourite dishes ever.

I will pay a visit, think it should be a fun trip. Will post back in August!

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I'd avoid the basic steak frites--the cheapest one. The steak I had seemed over-tenderized. Perhaps the better cuts are, well, better. Other than that the boeuf bourguignon is very good, and I've been happy with the cassoulet and choucroute garnie.

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That cookbook is a contender for the best cookbook in recent years. Lots of solid recipes accompanied by a little schtick.

My copy is more stained/grungy than any other book I own. My favorite cookbook.

Looking forward to the restaurant report. I'm planning on hitting Les Halles, Zabar's and some Arthur Ave. (Bronx) markets next time I'm in New York.

Who cares how time advances? I am drinking ale today. -- Edgar Allan Poe

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