Some Favorite French Restaurants NOT in France

For those of us who have to eat from afar.  Most of these are in NYC and London, so if you have other local favorites, please add them in the comments!  This way, if you want to go out next Thursday night, you can get your reservation in, in plenty of time.

True Favorites

La Fromagerie (London, Marylebone)

Amazing cheese and produce, the best French yogurts, and an adorable market-table atmosphere.

2-6 Moxon Street, Marylebone London W1U 4EW

La Petite Maison (London, Mayfair)

Elegance and refined Provençal fare, all done to the height of Mayfair sophistication.  I love this place: the grilled langoustines and ratatouille are to die.

53-54 Brook’s Mews,London W1K 4EG

Le Bistro d’à Côté (New York, Upper East Side)

A casual, neighborhood place with really great food and a lovely atmosphere.  I love their French Onion Soup.  And anyplace that serves merguez is in my good books.

1590 1st Ave #1, New York, NY 10028

Pastis (New York, Meat Packing District)

My Mecca.  Late night croque monsieurs are not the same anywhere else.  And they have great cocktails, and a Belle Epoque-meets-the-future ambiance.  A must.

9 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10014

Artisanal (New York, Midtown/Murray Hill)

Cheese, cheese, cheese.  Mouse heaven.  The fondue is ridiculous—I get it every time I go, and it’s the best I’ve ever had.  If you don’t want fondue, I can heartily recommend the tuna carpaccio with ratatouille vinaigrette, the mac and cheese, the croque monsieur, and the cheese plate.  All fabulous!

2 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10016

Balthazar (New York, Soho)

The best lentils I’ve ever had.  Lentils, lentils, and more lentils!

80 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012

Kappacasein (London, Bermondsey)

This AMAZING racelette place used to trade a Borough Market.  They also do Montgomery cheddar grilled cheeses.  Literally the best.

1 Voyager Railway Arches, Bermondsey London SE16 4RP

Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecote (London, Marylebone; New York, Midtown)

I love this place in Paris, and have written about it a zillion times.  There is no menu, only sliced steak in this delicious secret sauce, fries, walnut green salad, and dessert (profiteroles are a must).  The best part?  You get two servings of steak frites!  I’ve been to the London restaurant, and it’s just as good as the Paris one.  I imagine the New York location is similar.

590 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10022

120 Marylebone Lane, Marylebone London 

Table d’Hôte (New York, Upper East Side)

Tiny, tucked away around a corner, and ever-so-charming.  I love the mussels.  No fuss, and the perfect quaint date place.

44 East 92nd Street, New York, NY 10128

Tried and True

La Poule au Pot (London, Pimlico)

Authentic, cozy little homestyle auberge.  I love this place—the food tastes homemade.

231 Ebury Street, London SW1W 8UT

Bouchon (Yountville California)

The French Onion Soup here is so thick, so flavorful—it must have some kind of prize.

6534 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

Bisous Ciao Macarons (New York, Lower East Side)

The only place in the States so far where I’ve found true French macarons, replete with super-original flavors like lavender-honey.

101 Stanton Street, New York, NY 10002

Les Halles (New York, Midtown)

A stalwart, owned by Anthony Bourdain.  I go there for lunch, and love any of the meat.

411 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016

Tartine (New York, Greenwich Village)

Ambiance is half of it—a darling, terraced little café in the Village?  How can you not love?  Also good for celebrity sightings (as is Pastis).

253 West 11th Street, New York, NY 10014

Bistro Vendome (New York, Midtown)

The atmosphere is simple, but the moules provençales, on the half shell and baked with butter and parsley and garlic, are delicious.  And it’s pretty hard to find traditional fish soup in Manhattan.

405 E 58th St, New York 10022

Old Standbys

Demarchelier (New York, Upper East Side)

I like this cozy neighborhood place, for its windowed front room and bustling bar.  I always get the mussels, and the artichoke vinaigrette.

50 E 86th St #1, New York, NY 10028

L’Express (New York, Midtown/Murray Hill)

A late night or early croque monsieur never disappoints.

249 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003

La Grenouille (New York, Upper East Side/Midtown)

Fancy shmancy!  Where else are you getting to have a strawberry and thyme soufflé?

3 East 52nd Street, New York, NY 10022

La Mangeoire (New York, Upper East Side/Midtown)

Another restaurant that makes real Provençal home cooking.

1008 2nd Avenue, New York, NY 10022



A fabulous French diner in Meatpacking.  I miss it always!

La Tour

All you can eat moules-frites on the Upper East Side for $18.  And they always gave me a free glass of Sancerre.  How I miss…

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Categories: California, London, New York, Restaurants, Voyages

2 Responses to Some Favorite French Restaurants NOT in France

  1. So glad Bouchon makes the cut. Or maybe not…it’s already difficult to get a table! Have you ever been in the summer? They make this French version of ‘creamed corn’…whole kernels, baked with cream, creme fraiche and tarragon. It is TO DIE FOR. I was also thinking of their moules when I saw your Working Girl recipe. Have you ever read TK’s recipe for mussels? The broth is divine: lots of Dijon, a pinch of saffron, white wine AND chicken stock. Heaven!

  2. Kakie says:

    I don’t think Anthony Bourdain owns Les Halles. Philippe Lajaunie does (who is Portuguese I believe, actually). I love Les Halles though, their mussells and frites are among the best I’ve ever eaten. Their mixed grill is also amazing.