Diners at Meet are encouraged to share dishes by the on-staff mom trying to raise upstanding progeny. Politely split an appetizer such as cheese fondue (serves two, $14) or Meet's beets, served with goat cheese and honey-champagne vinaigrette ($10). The moules frites (mussels) come five ways, including au Roquefort (garlic, shallots, Roquefort, chives, and cream) and à la moutarde ancienne (tomato confit, mustard, tarragon, and cream) ($10 for the appetizer, $16 for entree). Pair a side of potato gratin or pommes puree ($5 each) with a classic of French cuisine like cabernet-braised short ribs ($22.95). The planche à fromages (assorted imported cheeses, $11) or pot of chocolate fondue (serves two, $12) brings the meal full circle like a Frisbee thrown into the wind. For a traditional finishing touch, try the tarte tatin (puff pastry, red apples, and caramel, $7).
Bistro Laurent shows off authentic French delicacies in its relaxed yet stylish dining space, festooned with elegantly framed vintage photographs. Armed with the bistro’s dinner menu, diners can bid bienvenue to the bavette à la Bordelaise ($14.75), a succulent hanger steak finished in a cabernet and onion balsamic reduction. Or, sink your mouth bones into one of the bistro's signature crepes, such as the Florentine, an edible envelope stuffed with spinach, smoked turkey breast, béchamel, parmesan, and elf wishes ($7.75). On the lunch menu, the biquet salad proudly brandishes its crest, emblazoned with goat cheese, grilled chicken, seasonal fresh berries, and grilled pecans ($5.95). Bistro Laurent's robust wine list offers complements for any meal and high praise for any diner who can correctly identify the tannins in a bottle of merlot.
Inspired by the culture and culinary traditions of Brittany, France, Cr?me de la Cr?pe Bistro specializes in authentically prepared sweet and savory crepes, which are staples of the region. The staff stuffs buckwheat breakfast crepes with combinations of eggs, meats, and cheeses, and dessert crepes?such as the bretonne?come layered with Nutella, bananas, and housemade whipped cream. Hearty pastas, risotto dishes, and specialties such as beef bourguignon join the menu for lunch and dinner, helping guests recover from stressful daytime chores, such as ironing clothes while wearing them.
One sunny afternoon, Ginnie Lu and her friends sat in a café sipping hot drinks and chatting about how much they would love to run their own tea and coffee house. When the group realized that they had the means to carve their dream into reality, they spent the next two years saving and planning. Finally, in 2010, they opened Four Leaf Tea Room, a cozy enclave where guests can sip specialty brews amidst the aromas of sweet and savory crepes. Mugs of oolong and chrysanthemum keep fingers warm during the year's cooler temperatures, and when the summer returns, they cool down with iced teas and mango freezes on an outdoor patio.
Despite Four Leaf’s name, its upscale, innovate crepes force its teas to share the limelight. A chef trained at Le Cordon Bleu dreams up the lavish fillings, pairing smoked salmon and caper-herb cream or soy-marinated chicken with crushed peanuts for savory meals. Sweet versions make use of exotic ingredients such as red-wine-poached pears, candied pecans, taro paste, and gelato. As guests fork into these creations, they can admire walls decorated with spring-green leaves and shelves filled with loose-leaf blends and prehistoric fossils of steam from early teas.
Much has changed since 1927, including the price of a chicken dinner. When Marius Taix Jr. first opened Taix, he served chicken dinners for 50 cents. Though the price may have changed, owner Raymond Taix made sure that the French country cuisine didn’t. Meals still come with a tureen of soup and freshly baked French bread, and the dinner menu of roast chicken au jus, salmon filet with champagne cream, and frog legs Provencal still honors the founder's original intentions. And though Raymond's staff is considered “vintage”—some having served more than three generations—they can still hang with the night owls, serving entrees from a late-night menu until 1 a.m. Taix also feeds cravings for late-night entertainment. Thursdays and Fridays, the restaurant hosts live music in the 312 lounge. On Sundays, the lounge also features standup comedy.