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Reviews + Photos from nymag.com
Posted by Terry on 03/08/2010
Despite the recent spate of bad reviews I preferred to keep an open mind because of the former reputation of this place. We were extremely disappointed however, with the service and the food. We both had the Porcini flan as an appetizer. My companion's was chock full of meaty crab, while mine was practically all liquid with the look and smell of a backed up sink. My roasted black sea bass entree was slimy and tasteless and my companion's rack of lamb (actually two tiny pieces of tough undercooked meat) was even worse. The only edible item was the tablespoon of mashed potato (excuse me, fingerling potato purée) served on the side. Desserts looked good but we were so disappointed that we didn't bother to stay. Needless to say, we will never come back here. I'm willing to pay exorbitant prices if the food is extraordinary but quite frankly, I would have preferred the Recession Special at Grey's Papaya to this dismal dining experience.
Posted by Steve on 02/05/2010
Having had some of the best meals of my life at Bouley in its two prior locations, I looked forward to splurging on the chef's menu at the new location on my birthday last month (January '10). Alas, the new space, while perhaps the loveliest of all, served the most subpar meal I have ever eaten at Bouley. Desserts were as good as ever, but everything else ranged from so-so to awful. A huge disappointment. Not sure I'll return.
Posted by anonymous on 01/04/2010
My boyfriend and i dined here last weekend, and given some of the recent reviews about service, we were hesitant but were looking forward to the experience so we kept our reservation and went. The food was beyond amazing- we did the tasting menu (which i think is definitely the way to go)-- the dungeness crab flan and the duck were standouts- like nothing we had ever tasted before. But really everything we had was delicious. The service was incredible, i even had someone escort me to the ladies room. The food is very expensive ($400/2 ppl including tax tip and drinks) so i'd recommend saving this place for a special occasion. Overall we will definitely go back next time we have something to celebrate.
Posted by Debbie on 12/08/2009
Some of the food was good, some was mediocre, the lamb was cold. The service was poor (excellent wine, served warm, repeated knocks to the head by passing servers...). Ridiculous gourmandise plate with dessert: one or two small items on each level of a 3-tiered presentation piece, all askew. Why bother with the exit gift of a little cake wrapped in Saran wrap with masking tape enclosed in a white bag that looks like it has been used 5 times. Overall the experience suggested a place well past its prime, a famous chef phoning it in and a general lack of attention to detail. Most of the problems could easily be fixed but apparently M. Bouley doesn't have the energy to bother.
Posted by SZ on 11/16/2009
Overall for the price we were disappointed. Food was hit or miss on the tasting menu. Fish courses were overcooked. The mushroom and crab flan signature dish was outstanding. The sommelier was very accomodating as was much of the staff, however there was a young blond guy who must have thought I should be serving him. Real attitude, which was not appreciated when you're paying $400 for dinner for two. Dessert was okay, however by the time they brought the chocolate soufflé to the table the three spoonfuls of ice cream had melted into soup. When we got the check they added a couple of items that we did not have, which again either they were trying to take advantage which I sincerely hope was not the case, or they were just sloppy. For a $400 experience for two people I expect an outstanding overall experience and don't think that's an unreasonable request.
Posted by Sarah on 11/15/2009
The service at Bouley was atrocious. We had made reservations and arrive a little early. We told them this and they told us that no one is seated before their reservation time. That is fine, completely understandable. Our reservation time came and went. Another half hour passed by, still not seated. Other patrons were waiting too and they were given drinks while they waited. It wasn't until 45 minutes after our reservation time that we received drinks as well. More patrons came in, some without reservations. Everyone was seated before us. We asked them about this and they just told us that because of the weather, some earlier patrons came in late, setting back their schedule and making tables unavailable to us now. We would have accepted this excuse, except that people who came in after us, who did not even have reservations were seated before us. When we saw this, we cancelled and tried to leave, but one of the hostesses caught us as we were leaving the coat room imploring us to come back, telling us a table had just opened up, even though no one had come out of the dining area to free up a table for the last half hour. It wasn't until an hour and a half after our reservations that we were finally seated in a tiny corner in their basement. To be fair, their food was good for the most part. I had the 6 course tasting menu all the of the food was very tasty, everything cooked to perfection, with maybe the exception of the dessert. The portions were small, but this was fine, since at that point, it was so late I had no appetite. As I was leaving the coat check girl, one of the only decent workers there, asked us if the food turned out to be worth the wait. The food was great, but certainly not worth that experience. I will never go back there.
Posted by anonymous on 11/10/2009
What heppened to this once great restaurant? I went there last Thursday night with my girlfriend and we could not have been more disappointed. I had heard about the snooty service, but for us the biggest let down was the food. Chef Bouley seems to have lost his touch. The canape was unpleasant, the tuna appetizer tasted like the fish had been sitting there for days and the lobster was rubbery and bland. The duck was good, but not good enough to save this meal. Don't bother with dessert either, not at all worth it.