France is considered one of the most romantic places on earth due to the proliferation of rose-encrusted street performers and a national motto of "Laissez faire, babe." Relish the cuisine of love with today's Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of upscale French fare at Le Bouchon, located in the Sheepshead Bay area of Brooklyn.
Le Bouchon's elegantly plated cuisine and 19th-century French décor instantly books incoming patrons on a sensory flight to an intimate, romantic French bistro. On the à la carte menu, the culinary excursion begins with exquisite salads such as the confit de canard, a julienne duck breast plated with a powerhouse team of wild berries, spicy walnuts, organic mixed greens, and wildcard citrus ponzu dressing ($16). Shareable seasonal oysters come chilled on a frozen version of their natural habitat alongside spicy horseradish and sweet ponzu sauce ($15 per half dozen), and diners are encouraged to save their shells to redeem for prizes during the lighting round.
Muscle-building protein makes a menu appearance in the form of skirt steak marinated overnight in seven spices and further flavor infused with a shitake mushroom bordeaux reduction ($25), and organic chicken whose desire for flight is capped by a signature cognac sauce ($25). Both meaty dishes are provided flavorful mashed potato escorts.
Hundreds of candles and a romantic fireplace provide the lighting at Le Bouchon, making it a beautiful atmosphere for a special occasion or a realistic setting for a fire drill. A collection of furniture imported from France makes settling in with a bottle of wine or cognac ($25 and up) from the eatery's extensive collection a refined and relaxing experience to share with a significant other or possible kidney donor.
- Alcohol graces some of the most creative sauces, such as a mushroom and Bordeaux sauce for steak and a cognac sauce on Nikhman’s chicken breast. The cognac — and not just any brandy, but Cognac Grande Champagne — also shows up in the excellent tiramisu. – Alex Rush, New York Post
Featured by the New York Post as an authentic haven for French cuisine that stands apart from its competitors—a sea of pizzeria and takeout Chinese options—Le Bouchon woos diners with the complex bouquet of rich sauces and roasted meats that is chef Roman Nikhman's love letter to the French cooking tradition. Le Bouchon, which takes its name from the French word for wine cork, offers à la carte and banquet menus featuring sumptuous Gallic standards including foie gras drizzled with wild-berry port wine or a classic duck magret with a fig-port-wine reduction. Chef Nikhman's love for French cuisine began with its rich sauces, according to the Post, and the menu features mother sauces and reductions by the spoonful, all of which complement the broad palette of delectable proteins that include duck, lobster, escargot, and rich roasted portobello mushrooms. The knowledgeable staff can help diners choose a varietal from among the restaurant's colossal wine-barrel selection or the wine rack that takes up an entire wall, represented on a wine list 13 pages long.