Lafayette, Andrew Carmellini

Well, Andrew Carmellini has done it again, folks. And by ‘it’ I mean absolutely nailed it. Lafayette, which opened only two days ago at 380 Lafayette Street in New York City, was a-buzz last night and ticked just about all of the boxes: friendly, fast service, delicious food and a cool ambiance. The French cafe is massive, yet cozy, and even if you don’t make it past the bakery at the front (which you may not, as they’re expecting wait times to be hours long), you’ll still be able to sniff and sample some pastries.

On the menu at Lafayette there are, of course, plenty of traditional French dishes and a few more adventurous plates to choose from. As I was dining with only one other person and sat at the bar, we had to choose carefully, and I would recommend you follow our lead:

Baked Oysters “Sargent” with seaweed, $18

Duck au Poivre, organic grains, radish, smoked bacon (as well as candied kumquats & whole peppercorns), $30

Black Fettuccine, seafood and chorizo, $21

For dessert, we had to pick two. The warm Beignets were little pockets of fried heaven, with a caramel mousse or passion fruit dipping sauce.  The Sweet Cheese Cremant (the pastry chef’s ‘twist’ on Cheesecake) with pickled blueberry sorbet and cornmeal croutons got points for creativity and presentation.

According to the bartender, Lafayette will roll out lunch in the next few weeks, followed by brunch. Which I will absolutely be there for.

The damage: $152, before tip (2 people, 2 glasses of wine (ok, 3, one was comped!) and 2 gin & tonics)

380 Lafayette Street, ph: 212-533-3000

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