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New French Dining Picks


409 Atlantic Avenue, Boerum Hill, Brooklyn

When you market yourself as a bistrot à vins, you might consider postponing your opening till the liquor license arrives. Bacchus didn’t, and it’s a testament to the quality of the cooking and the congeniality of the owners and staff that it’s already become such a beloved, albeit temporarily BYOB, Boerum Hill fixture. A rustic, cozy dining room, a tranquil garden, and a menu that deftly combines the classics (coq au vin, $10; steak-frites, $18) with the more contemporary (baked salmon with tomato jam and artichokes, $12) make the dry spell more than tolerable.

Financier Patisserie
62 Stone Street

Saturated with fast-food outlets and plagued by lackluster saloons, the financial district has always been a budget-dining desert. This elegant café, an offshoot of Bayard’s and Harry’s on Hanover Square, is an oasis—not only for its mouthwatering patisserie but for its lunchtime panini, North Fork salad greens, and satisfying soups. We’re partial to the chicken and goat cheese on Tom Cat Bakery ciabatta ($6.50) but are easily swayed by the equally compelling San Danielle prosciutto-mozzarella-pesto or the house-cured tuna ($7 each). Bonus points: genteel service, real china, and outdoor seating on a lovely cobblestone street.

Family Circle: Sunday afternoon at Redhook's 360. (Photo by Kenneth Chen)

360 Van Brunt Street, Red Hook, Brooklyn

The difficulty of getting to this cozy, off-the-beaten-track bistro is offset by the ease of ordering: The $20 three-course prix fixe changes daily and includes a choice of three appetizers, two entrées, and two desserts. Co-owner Arnaud Erhart patrols the artisan-crafted, vaguely ship-shaped room, recommending mostly organic or biodynamic wines (his particular passion) and scolding scofflaw cell-phone users who violate the house civility code, which also requires reservations and payment in cash for the time being. Irascible interlopers might balk, but the prospect of roasted scallops with leek fondue, a tender paprika-tinged hanger steak, and lighter à la carte bites like oysters and delectable charcuterie will keep you on your best behavior.