ew York is full of restaurants, delis and grocery stores. But the food you so easily find at your local supermarket or butcher in France can be a rare treasure in such a multicultural city.
Not to worry, we’ve got the insider info on the best French food and restaurants in the city.
The food is what I miss the most from France, after my family and friends. Food is an essential part of French culture and goes well beyond the actual meal. It’s a way to share quality time with friends and family. A dinner at a restaurant that lasts less than two hours would shock many French purists, as well as a grocery store that doesn’t sell fresh baguettes and affordable blue cheese.
Fresh French produce
Finding French food in New York can be hard as it is not sold at every corner. You might have to go out of your neighborhood and pay the price. A few grocery stores sell French food in different neighborhoods.
Are you craving French cookies, fruit syrup, mustard and pickles? Head to the Upper East Side to visit Marche du Sud, a small store that also have a bakery counter, a bar and an outside patio.
Want to prepare a good couscous and other Mediterranean meals? Sahadi’s in Brooklyn is where you want to shop.
Dean and Deluca (several locations) and Murray’s cheese shop (Greenwich Village and Grand Central) are always good spots for a wide variety of cheese. For fresh bread and croissants, try Ceci-Cela or Balthazar Bakery in the Village.
As of French wines, most liquor stores carry a decent selection. Don’t forget also to check your around-the-corner deli as they might sell your favorite French cookies or Nutella!
Dining out… French style
I will avoid the obvious, over-the-top and fancy choices that make people think that French food is only served in the smallest portions. My favorite restaurants are the kind of places where you feel like your grandma is cooking, or that you just entered a typical Parisian bistro.
Go to Pastis for their onion soup and kir rosé, to French Roast (open daily 24 hours!) for their selection of cheese and delicious puree, or to L’Express for their charcuterie plate and traditional steak au poivre.
Grainne Café is my place of choice for a lunch or brunch next to the High Line with delicious croque-monsieur and other crêpes.
To test more good spots, don’t miss French Restaurant Week, usually held in the summer.
What are your favorite places in New York to shop for French delicacies and dine out? Do you cook a lot of French meals when you stay home? Join the conversation in the comments box below or on twitter: @MaVieFrancaise & @NYC_Jen.
1. French Roast at dusk, by See-ming Lee via Flickr.
2. French pastries, by You as a Machine via Flickr.
3. Roasted Bone Marrow, by N Wong via Flickr.