Food and drink
The classic menu includes meaty dishes like the great Cote de boeuf, saucisson en brioche and a decadent “Black Label” burger with caramelized onions, which is quickly becoming a crowd favorite despite its $26 price tag.
This has always been a neighborhood institution and I love how McNally has left the bones of the landmark building intact but added vintage black and white photos and cozy red banquettes. It has new life without being precious. And the wood bar is gorgeous.
Just like McNally is a genius for finding beautiful landmark buildings in the hottest neighborhoods in town, he is a genius at staffing the places, from the waiters to the barmen. I especially respect the woman who handles the door - it must be the hardest job in town telling people they can’t come in and choosing the lucky few who get to belly up to the bar even without a reservation.
On Minetta Lane right off 6th Avenue. This part of the Village is too touristy but I like this particular block.
It’s not cheap, even the bistro fare runs from US$16 and a three-course meal without wine will cost about US$50 per person. As far as I am concerned it’s worth it but if you can go on an expense account even better.
Tables to book
I like being in the back room but if you can get a reservation at all you’ll be lucky. Even if you can’t get in for dinner, drop by for an excellent dry martini or squeeze on to one of the counter bar seats for a full meal (the bar choice is the way I like to go here anyway).
- Business travellers
- Celebrity spotting
- People watching