La Grenouille, That Manhattan Jewel

Bright Spears of Spring Asparagus

Bright Spears of Spring Asparagus

Last week I had lunch in the private room upstairs at La Grenouille.  I’ve dreamed of visiting this restaurant in all its storied elegance and beauty so that I might try their souffles, but in this age of boisterous, casual dining it’s difficult to commit to a formal meal in a place where you’re paying for an experience on the verge of extinction.  I’m a downtown girl, I like eating at the bar, I like brasseries and bistros and cafes. 

Which is exactly why this experience was so beautiful and served as a great reminder that we can’t let these kinds of restaurants go quietly into our dining history.  High-end Manhattan restaurants face huge challenges to stay not just profitable but relevant in a culture that now can get high-end food in low-down places.  My meal at La Grenouille (a pre-planned business luncheon) was rather simple, but well-executed, served with two lovely French wines by wonderfully professional, refined servers in a gorgeous room that invited calm.

Wine, a perfect Pouilly-Fuisse, on my table adorned with peonies

Wine, a perfect Pouilly-Fuisse, on my table adorned with peonies

the infamous flowers of La Grenouille- the owner does his own arrangements

the infamous flowers of La Grenouille- the owner does his own arrangements

 

A very elegant "floating island" with spun sugar... also known as oeufs a la Neige (vanilla custard and meringue)

A very elegant "floating island" with spun sugar... also known as oeufs a la Neige (vanilla custard and meringue)

 

the elegant room upstairs

the elegant room upstairs

 

La Grenouille, 3 E. 52nd St, New York.  Visit their website for more info.

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Filed under Eating, Entertaining, Restaurants

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