A, C, E at 14th St.; L at Eighth Ave.
American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
This venue is closed.
Your out-of-town friends want to see what all the Meatpacking District fuss is about. In-town friends roll their eyes, declaring it overpriced, over hyped and, well, just plain over. Here's a diplomatic fix : dinner at Jarnac, an unassuming French bistro on a sleepy street just south of the swarming scenesters. British owner Tony Powe, a veteran of the hospitality industry, named the restaurant for the picture-perfect Cognac town of his youth, and more nights than not he can be found charming guests with his toothy smile and easy manner. The service generally strikes a similarly pleasing and attentive note. Adding to the sense of a personalized experience, the menu displays the date and changes frequently. Appetizers like flavorful grilled asparagus with Burratta cheese and plum tomatoes or fresh crab cakes with spicy mango chutney trump the entrees, which are mainly serviceable bistro standards (cassoulet, pan roasted duck, lamb shank and so forth). Things pick up again at dessert, courtesy of a few cakes and tarts served with gelato from Il Laboratorio del Gelato. Call for a round of Cognac cocktails and chances are you'll remain comfortably entrenched in Jarnac's small dining area, primly outfitted with wooden furniture and salmon-colored walls, petite lampshades and a prominent mirror. At closing time, there's always the option of Level V's pulsing dance floor a few blocks up.