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Reviews + Photos from nymag.com
Posted by Michael Loh - Singapore on 09/22/2008
Bouley was definitely our most memorable dining experience in New York city during our 3-week stay in the Big Apple in August. We were very warmly greeted in French (no less) the minute we arrived and promptly escorted to our table. Our comfort was assured before they presented the menu. We appreciate the extra care they took in ensuring our comfort. This was the start to a great dining experience. The dining room was decorated in Continental style with fresh flowers on every table. The warm red hues were also to my preference. However the placement of the tables were quite close to each other leaving little room for privacy. We had neighbours who were talking not too softly but we tried not to let that get in the way of our enjoyment. Service was impeccable. The waiting staff were very attentive, courteous and friendly yet very professional in their approach and demeanour. I had no doubt that they deserved every penny of the 20% tip. Well what can I possibly say about the food? Everything was fantastic from the Chef's welcome appetizer right up to dessert. Our favorite dishes were the Florida Shrimp, Baby Squid and Cape Cod Sea Scallop - the seafood were fresh and done just right to retain its ocean freshness, and the Tuna Sashimi served on a bed of shaved fennel - the tuna sashimi was so fresh and tender it almost melted in my mouth. After we have paid the bill, we were graciously thanked for our patronage (nothing too ostentatious or embarassing) and my wife received a lemon loaf as a parting gift which we really appreciated. We had initially made a mental note to buy a loaf from their bakery across the street. Overall a most satisfying and unforgettable experience for us. As tourists without a car, we had absolutely no difficulty finding the restaurant from Chambers Street subway station. It is a mere 5 mins stroll from station.
Posted by rjfoodwine on 09/21/2008
Very stiff service to the point it makes you unconfortable. Tables are too close together for this type of dining. If it is a quiet atmosphere why have the tables 6 inches apart. All conversations could be heard. No butter served with bread, water glasses left empty, no manager around from what i could see. The basic service issues not even followed. Food was good but not great. Nothing I can even remember stands out. Even the famous bread was just average. Ended up spending about $800 on the meal with glasses of champagne and a decent Burgundy and would of been happier even if spending more somewhere I liked. Sommelier recommened a 2003 red burgundy and when I said I not very fond of the warm vintage he said I would be impressed with this domaine. He was wrong, hot and unbalanced. Overall bad experience and could not wait to get out of there.
Posted by Australian sisters on 07/14/2008
Chocolate muffin - could get better at Starbucks, cheesecake was soggy and boring. We were recommended to go here by some Australian friends, they will no longer be our friends as we did walk quite some way for sullen service and overpriced average baked goods.
Posted by Anonymous on 07/09/2008
the food was a total disappointment...service was good...but the food was just fussy and did not taste good!
Posted by Food Addiction on 06/26/2008
I rate all the restaurants I go to and Bouley is the FIRST restaurant ever to get a 10 out of 10. The service was absolutely fantastic (the person before must have been on an off day). The ambiance was so pleasant and I have no words to describe how delicious the food was. I had the 5 course tasting menu and couldn't wipe the smile off my face after taking the first bite of each course. Needless to say I'm still smiling now. I can't wait to go to Bouley again. It's a great place to impress a date or an out -of-town visitor and it's a great place to just enjoy with friends. TOTALLY RECOMMENDED! Take me with you -)
Posted by Anonymous on 06/24/2008
First, the service was atrocious. There were so many suited waiters and dining room managers running around they were literally bumping into one another. And,even worse, they were all hovering around - very distracting and unprofessional for a restaurant of this alleged caliber. Also, right inside the doorway to the dining room, right next to our table, was what looked like an end table with a large plant on it. But they used it to store menus in a drawer, so all evening they were opening and closing the drawer to retrieve and put away menus. And, they stored half empty bottles of water and wine on top. It was very busy, distracting, and unappealing to look at someone else's half empty bottles all evening. Service was very poor. We waited over 10 minutes for our drinks (there were only two of us) after ordering, and we waited over 20 minutes between appetizers and entrees. We sat waiting close to 20 minutes after our dessert and coffee was finished, with our napkins on the table and the waiter standing watching us, before I finally gave in and asked for our check to get the hell out of there. No one ever came to us and asked how our meal was and if everything was okay. I guess they were all too busy trying to stay out of each other's way. Food - decent, but nothing outstanding. The Blue Fin Tuna Sashimi appetizer was okay, but had very little flavor. The shaved fennel that was supposed to be on it was invisible and contributed none of the desired flavor . We both had the seared halibut for an entree, which was good, but nothing I couldn't make at home. Breads sounded interesting but were lifeless and tasted like a loaf I had last week from Safeway. We both had two different chocolate desserts - the souffle, and the chocolate brioche. We are both chocoholics, but these desserts were nondescript. Very little chocolate flavor. The little plate of cookies courtesy of the pastry chef was also nondescript and unappetizing. And the bathrooms - broken handle on the faucet, and broken hinge on the toilet seat so that it swiveled around and did not align with the toilet itself. For a restaurant of this alleged caliber (oh heck, ANY restaurant), this was unacceptable.
Posted by Total Foodie on 06/18/2008
My sister and I ate here and had the most amazing experience! Impeccable food, service, atmosphere.. everything! It's my new favorite restaurant EVER! Definitely get the tasting menu and try the lobster, prosciutto, mango coconut dish and the chocolate souffle. Both were too good for words!