In the 19th century, the North Shore’s salty breezes, rocky beaches, and elegant estates drew New York City’s elite out of their Manhattan apartments and into the captivating towns of what was to be called the Gold Coast. The remnants of this storied past still stand and the shore breezes still blow, as diners at Bliss Restaurant enjoy what Zagat deemed “creative American cuisine with a French twist”. Guests seated on the blooming outdoor patio swirl the ice in their seasonal cocktails, dine on baked brie and seared diver sea scallops, and listen to the melodic strumming of a live musician. Other menu items include pignoli-nut-crusted red snapper, half-roasted chicken with wild mushroom sauce, and banana and chipotle-braised short ribs, which can all be paired with sides such as chive and brie mashed potatoes or kielbasa and sauerkraut. Inside the restaurant, diners enjoy candle-lit tables with white table clothes and dark wood accents. It’s a contemporary ambiance that, like the Gold Coast, harkens back to a time of romance and refinement.
Tasty Crêpes's capable crepe craftsmen flip sweet and savory griddle cakes, artfully dressing them in delectable toppings that include local and sustainable fruits and vegetables. Strolling down a cafeteria-style line, patrons belly up to the serving counter to admire cooks as they sizzle traditional or whole-wheat batter on hot plates and then shout out specialty ingredients to customize their edible pouch. In honey-mustard crepes ($6.50), chicken, honey mustard, and herb crème shimmy through fluffy caverns, and chocolate brownies and bananas sweetly cohabitate inside the Brownie Passion crepe ($5.50). For satiating self-expression, diners can color a plain flour canvas ($3.99) with an assortment of cheese, meat, fruit, and nut toppings ($1 each). To wash tender morsels down hatches, nibblers can sip a 100% juice fruit smoothie—a much safer way to get your daily dosage of fruit than ransacking a still-life art class.
A wood fire crackles in a stone hearth, the warm glow of the flames lighting the inside of a cozy Victorian house. Visitors might think they've stepped into a New England country inn, if it wasn't for the white-linen-swathed tables that populate the room—not to mention the aromas of French-inspired, New American cuisine that hang in the air. The genteel space serves as the dining room of Barney's Restaurant, the brainchild of Executive Chef Mitchell Hauser. He waxes Continental with succulent foie gras, goat-cheese-crusted filet mignon, and duck confit, while also paying homage to closer-to-home culinary motifs with crab cakes, crispy-skin salmon, and mussels from Prince Edward Island. Colorful and artistic platings bring each dish to life, but the presentation is not the only area in which Barney's goes the extra mile: Mitchell and his staff scour local markets for the freshest produce to work into their menu, ensuring that each dish pops with flavor and has a passing allegiance to the region's sports organizations.
Brasserie Persil emulates the classic French caf?: it has rich wood paneling, stone-inlaid floors, and a wide variety of traditional French food. Brunches of goat cheese and mushroom crepes or croquet monsieurs make way for elegant dinners of steak tartare, filet of sole meuniere, and beef bourgignon. Feel free to sip a French wine, beer, or espresso martini as you finish up a dessert or a doodle of yourself scaling the Eiffel Towers on your placemat.
OceanView Bistro’s BYOB policy doesn’t apply to its chefs, who use wine as an ingredient in several dishes, including a chicken stew marinated in red wine and mussels sautéed in white wine. The bistro's dinner menu boasts an all-French lineup of escargot hors d’oeuvres, stews, seafood, and dessert crepes drizzled in lemon or orange sauce and served with scoops of ice cream. During breakfast and lunch hours, the chefs shift gears from French to American and serve up deli sandwiches, burgers, and pancakes.
Five-year-old local favorite Ludlow Bistro cooks up innovative, yet simple cuisine and compliments it with modern décor and a friendly, attentive serving staff that will try to meet any request—except for those beginning with "I dare you to…" Diners can dig their claws into artfully arranged appetizers such as the lump crab cakes, whose citrus-marinated fennel and carrots jam harmoniously with chili aioli ($13). Pastas, such as the fresh buccatini, take tongues on a tour of the Tuscan countryside with a merry band of pan-seared chicken, hand-crushed plum tomatoes, and bruchetta goat cheese ($23), along with a sassy 40-year-old divorcée trying to find herself. Savor a whiskered water dweller with the Cajun seared cat fish, paired with a zesty duo of spicy coleslaw and chili cream-corn beurre blanc ($25). Carnivorous connoisseurs, meanwhile, will want to feast on finless finds such as the rib eye with herb gnocchi, caramelized peppers, and a port-wine reduction ($28) or a grilled pork chop, accompanied by braised red swiss chard, gorgonzola mashed potatoes, and caramelized peaches ($26). Oven originals are also on hand, including freshly baked breads and desserts.