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Recette

Critic's Pick Critics' Pick

328 W. 12th St., New York, NY 10014 40.737409 -74.006612
nr. Greenwich St.  See Map | Subway Directions Hopstop Popup
212-414-3000 Send to Phone

  • Cuisine: American Nouveau, French, Mediterranean
  • Price Range: $$

    Key to Prices and ratings

    Upscale
    • Almost Perfect
    • Exceptional
    • Generally Excellent
    • Very Good
    • Good
    Cheap Eats
    • Best in Category
    • Excellent
    • Delicious
    • Very Good
    • Noteworthy
    • Very Expensive
    • Expensive
    • Moderate
    • Cheap
  • Critics' Rating: **

    Key to Prices and ratings

    Upscale
    • Almost Perfect
    • Exceptional
    • Generally Excellent
    • Very Good
    • Good
    Cheap Eats
    • Best in Category
    • Excellent
    • Delicious
    • Very Good
    • Noteworthy
    • Very Expensive
    • Expensive
    • Moderate
    • Cheap
  • Reader Rating:

    6 out of 10

      |  

    10 Reviews | Write a Review

Photo by Melissa Hom

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Official Website

recettenyc.com

Hours

Mon-Sat, 5:30pm-midnight; Sun, 10am-3pm and 5:30pm-midnight

Nearby Subway Stops

A, C, E at 14th St.; L at Eighth Ave.

Prices

$10-$28

Payment Methods

American Express, MasterCard, Visa

Special Features

  • Dine at the Bar
  • Great Desserts
  • Notable Chef
  • Notable Wine List
  • Romantic
  • Reservations Not Required

Alcohol

  • Full Bar

Reservations

Recommended

Profile

Jesse Schenker and his band of tattooed kitchen serfs at Recette, in the West Village, seem bent on dragging the old French canon, kicking and screaming, into the new millennium. The 30-year-old cook (who sports a tattoo of a Japanese carving knife on his arm) has worked with Gordon Ramsay, among others, and his pastry chef, Christina Lee, is a veteran of Per Se. Rather than rise slowly through the ranks of a stuffy, uptown kitchen, Schenker and company have followed the now familiar David Chang model and set up shop in a small, out-of-the-way location, in this case the former Jarnac space, on the far westerly fringe of 12th Street. Their new restaurant isn’t much to look at (spare dark-wood tabletops squeezed between drab olive walls, with a scattering of antique knickknacks), but the modestly priced (only three dishes cost over $20) small-plate, “urban American” menu is full of all sorts of elegant and unexpected surprises.


The first thing I tasted at Recette (French for “recipe”) was a square of arctic-char tartare, dabbed, among other things, with beet-flavored sorbet and popping little bulbs of salmon caviar. By the time the third dish arrived (a deliciously soft block of halibut, set over a creamy morel sauce), I felt like an opera buff who’d stumbled on a group of world-class tenors singing arias in their garage. Schenker and his associates are just as facile with meat (try the gently caramelized pork belly or the crunchy sweetbread drizzled with brown butter) as they are with fish, and you will find little wonders on the dessert list, too. Lee dresses puffy beignets with cassis-spiked raspberry jam, and makes an updated Greenmarket version of a napoleon with roasted apples. But to finish your meal on a real crescendo, order her ingenious interpretation of s’mores, which is made with burnt marshmallow, graham-cracker ice cream, and a streak of chocolate ganache spiced with cayenne.

Ideal Meal

Crispy sweetbreads, halibut, graham-cracker ice-cream s’mores.

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