Cru Event at Lafayette – The Dutch

Last Wednesday was the presentation of the Georges Duboeuf 2012 Crus. Known as the biggest French negociant who started exporting wine 31 years ago in the US, Duboeuf does not mean only Beaujolais Nouveau. His 10 Crus, from the best part of the Beaujolais area, are named Flower and present a great value. But he also owns other domains and bottles the juice in his property.
The presentation took place at Lafayette, the new restaurant that has been open for exactly one month, owned by the same team behind The Dutch and Locanda Verde. 5 tables were dressed in the wine cellar downstairs, which was really appropriate for this event.
The first step was a walk-in tasting with some small appetizer. The gougère was too hard, but the mini slider was definitely one of the best burgers I had, and it is on the menu! The secret must have been the raclette cheese, even though it was a bit too salty.
The star of the event was again the Juliénas, Château des Capitans. The Beaujolais and Mâconnais were also featured with a special mention to the Pouilly-Fuissé, Domaine Emile Béranger, which is going to be the killer once people understand Duboeuf can also be featured in white tablecloth restaurants because of its quality.


As part of the lunch, the paté was paired with Beaujolais-Villages. All the French people got a bit disappointed since they put so much spices and fresh herbs you can barely taste the meat. And I hope you have strong teeth to eat the toasted bread served with it, you will need them.
Between each course, the legend, Georges, and his son Franck, talked about the wines.
The spinach and slight goat cheese ravioli were really fine. The roasted chicken was definitely the best dish. Naked, served only with 5 bites of roasted potatoes, it was like getting the chicken from the farmers market a summer in France. I was expecting a tarte tatin for dessert; we got a tarte fine, which is absolutely not the same. Thin slices of apple served on a puff pastry dough with a slight burned taste. I should probably share with them the actual recipe.
Overall, Lafayette is a very nice place to get the spirit of a French Brasserie. And I will probably go back to taste their bakery for breakfast.
And I have to say that the flower bouquet with the gift bag was a nice wink to the Flower label and kind thoughts to women.

Lafayette
380 Lafayette Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 533 3000

The Dutch is the American Soho restaurant own by the same team. The venue is bright, with the same snobby atmosphere you find in these trendy Manhattan spots I talked about in earlier posts. The non-so classic poached egg was served with ham, chipotle and tomato and a cheddar biscuit in an oven dish. Special mention to the burger and French fries. I feel I always get my best burgers in restaurants that are not known for that.

The Dutch
131 Sullivan St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 677-6200

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Reynard at the Wythe Hotel

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Some places decide to change their name to refresh their image. Last August, Tarlow decided to officially change the name of “Reynards”to… “Reynard”. Since I first came to NY in August 2012, I would not be able to tell if there was any change, but I will try to suggest you why you should brunch there next weekend.

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Personally, I will definitely spend all my weekends on the other side of the River since such great chefs have recently decided to establish outside of Manhattan.

Located in the Wythe Hotel in North Williamsburg, you can’t miss you have landed on Hipster Land. Do not forget to bring your Hipster Starter Kit:

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But since waiters are nice to average-non-stylish-Parisian-tourists like us, it makes the experience even better. High wooden ceiling, lot of space, large windows that make this rainy Saturday brighter.

The February menu offers nice out-of-the box options. The rosemary-mandarin scone is a nice mix of sweet-savory flavors.

The duck banh-mi, on whole-wheat bread, is a complete different dish from what I am used to with Vietnamese sandwiches. The slightly-Asian flavors with the cabbage slaw, cilantro and pickled egg make you travel a bit while the outstanding French fries remind you we are not in Asia.

Even though I would not have a burger for brunch, go for it! This fancy grass-fed burger features excellent basic ingredients: bun, meat, gruyère cheese and grilled onions. Some greens in or on the side would have made look it healthier though!

Excellent vibe, this venue is great to relax during weekends and eat delight food.

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Reynard at the Wythe Hotel
80 Wythe Ave,
New York, NY 11211
(718) 460-8004