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Reviews + Photos from nymag.com
Posted by Ann Miller on 10/19/2013
I really don't know what all the fuss is about. Other than the cute, chic French mise-en-scene this place is a total rip off. Yes, it will remind you of bistros in Paris - that slightly poetic, run-down decor that could have been culled from someone's basement - but other than that, you won’t get much for your money. The portions are tiny - if you decide to share one of the plats that begin at $21 for three items. And I mean tiny. We got about a tablespoon – possibly less – of each of the two cheeses we selected and maybe an ounce of duck mouse. That came with toasted - and I believe old - bread that was supposed to be crunchy but literally fell apart. The Pouilly-Fuissé came in a very small carafe that produced one glass and a half. That was excellent as it well should have been for $26. In retrospect, we would have been better off buying a bottle. I sat on a tiny, small metal seat with no back - most of the "seats" were the same for all the small tables and the wait staff constantly bumped into my back as they scurried to the bar. To be clear, I'm 120 pounds and 5'7" so I'm not that big. If any of them had even, just once, said, "excuse me" or even pretended to be polite, I wouldn't have minded that much. I can’t believe they have a ‘Buvette’ in Paris … when I was in Paris I never once paid $100 for a “pseudo” meal [and left hungry]. Come to think of it, I never had to pay that much for a meal anywhere in France and I can guarantee you that the food was abundant and good. So if you just want to drop $100 to sit in a faux French bistro with snooty wait staff on uncomfortable seats with tiny portions and pretend you are chic and privileged, then this is the place for you. If you want real good food at a decent price – go somewhere else.
Posted by LH on 08/08/2012
It seems that most of these reviews have come from people who expected to have "American" service, which is notoriously over-involved in the diners' meal. Buvette offers something entirely different---it gives the diner the opportunity to enjoy the company of his companions without the interference of a waiter. (There's none of this, "Hello, my name is Sally and I'll be your server!" nonsense.) This certainly isn't the restaurant for you if you don't like making friends with your neighbors, as you will invariably be seated inches away from the next party or even at the same table! For people who enjoy that experience, it will be the best meal out you've had in this city. And I haven't even mentioned the food yet! (It's outstanding, and so well executed and true to French cuisine.) Tips: Arrive early, between 5p and 6p to get a table, or sit at the bar where you can watch the action. Keep in mind, "buvette" means "a little drink." Everything about the place is petite, from the plates to the portion sizes to the tables and utensils. It helps if you're thin, as there's not much extra room in the place. (Sorry, but it's true!) Talk to your neighbors! It's the best way to learn about the food and to expand your New York experience. You're missing out if you keep to yourself.
Posted by adoannie on 06/30/2012
3 words: Amazing! Amazing! Amazing! We have a toddler so every meal out counts. This exceeded our expectations on every count!
Posted by Joy on 04/18/2012
Attentive service for a solo diner. Great neighborhood resto, too bad it's not in my neighborhood. Flavorful food , everything on the menu is delicious!
Posted by TRILD on 04/06/2012
The best: The service and specially our waiter Antoine, he was very friendly. He recommended the best wine in the place, it was fantastic. The service was impeccable. Try: The French wine & Pomodorini. We went 3 times in one week, during our holiday in NYC and it was always amazing. Super atmosphere & delicious food. We love Buvette in NYC. Also the neighborhood is bohemian and interesting.
Posted by Anonymous on 11/07/2011
Posted by Richard S. on 09/06/2011
Fearful of no reservations and extended waits the wife and I came here on a rainy post Labor Day evening and found Buvette pleasantly calm. Everything was excellent - the VT cheese, duck rillettes, the crostini, a special of what in Italy would be vitello tonnato but was here made with thinly sliced pork loin, the farro salad and desserts. Prices were reasonable to downright a bargain (for the 'hood)! The wine list is long and interesting and comes in glasses, carafes and bottles all for very fair prices. The place is lovely - including the basement storage area and bathrooms! - and the service was friendly and just right (on this un-busy night). Must go back soon!