All Reader Reviews of...
230 E. 51st St., New York, NY, 10022
nr. Third Ave.
By yiannis60 on 8/9/2012
Visiting New York with my friend for a fortnight and enjoying it! We were in East Midtown and decided to have something simple for lunch and a glass of wine in the neighborhood. We found Â«Le Bateau IvreÂ» in Not For Tourists guide and decided to try it. We had three glasses of white wine and two tartines (open sandwiches) and as soon as we finished, the waiter rushed to bring the check. We paid a total cost of 61.5 dollars and decided to leave 4 dollars as tip. It was a quick simple lunch and the service was basic. Five minutes later and as we were walking along Third Avenue we were suddenly accosted by an irrate, foul-mouthed French server, threatening that he will call the police because we did not tip him enough and that this was illegal. When I said that I did not think so, he used an adoring set of f-off words as we stood stunned in the middle of the pavement, harassed and watched by the passersby. We decided to go back and complain to the (French) manager who was almost as arrogant. I am amazed that places like this are recommended in otherwise great city guides. Even if we were silly tourists who do not understand the tipping etiquette of New York, shouldnâ€™ t they find another way to convince people to tip them more than chasing, threatening, insulting and swearing at them? If you are visiting New York, as they say in the local dialect: fuhgeddaboudit!
By Eugene007 on 4/16/2011
This restaurant is absolutely amazing. Went out for dinner and was quite impressed. The escargot appetizer was a serving of 6 and was well cooked. I ordered the duck breast and had it cooked in a medium manner. I can honestly say it was the best duck I have ever ate. The sauce was terrific and the meat was tender and full of juice. The desert was certainly a pleasure as well. We ordered the exotic caramel, vanilla ice cream with roasted nuts. Each course we ordered was cooked to perfection and was a delight to eat. The only thing that I didn't like was the pricing. The wines are a bit over priced, but then again what restaurant doesn't overprice the booze... The staff is well trained and do everything possible to make your meal as pleasant as possible without even having to ask. Overall, if a $100-140 dinner fits your budget, I would recommend this place without any hesitation!
Always a pleasure
By babyphat523 on 8/18/2010
I have been here at least 9 times with my husband over the past year. Most recently, I took a friend for dinner on a Friday eve. I am usually overwhelmed by the extensive list of wines and it being summer, I was interested in a rose. But my friend was a red wine drinker, so I asked our server, who is ALWAYS attentive and helpful - to suggest a medium bodied red for us to enjoy with our meal of foie gras, escargot & mussels. He suggested a wonderful pinot noir, which was outstanding. My foie gras terrine was delicious as usual, buttery soft and smooth, served with sour cherry preserves and a wee mache salad. My friend's escargot came out piping hot, full of - yes, bubbling butter, garlic & parsley. The mussels portion is huge, and are IMHO the yummiest in the city, served in cream & shallot broth. Very rich. Not the white wine version you might normally find elsewhere... Do tell the server if you have sodium restrictions, as I find that it could be a tad salty, but never overwhelmingly so. (My friend did not think so at all and my hubby certainly never thinks so!) The mussels come with small cone of super crispy fries/frites, which at my table, usually do not get eaten until all the mussels are gone... they then get thrown into the broth, and become a mussel chowder for 2 to share. Finally after 3 hours, 2 full bottles of wine, and a perfect creme brulee - we were ready to leave. Love to linger here, never feel rushed. The staff is awesome & our lovely hostess was Fatou (sp?).
best french bistro in town
By pamglick on 3/10/2009
100s of wines by the glass; great french bistro food; true parisan atmosphere; all for a very reasonable price.
My Favorite New York Wine Bar
By nsmith on 8/28/2007
It's the wine, although I must admit, the limited menu is just right. My wife and I have had dinner, lunch and breakfast here and we highly recommend the breakfast. The staff is friendly and knowledgable and the wine, well, it's French! No better wine is available in the city.
By CDY on 7/13/2007
This is one of may favorite places in New York, and i often treat myself to a relaxing workday lunch, enjoying the atmposphere, crowd, French music and top-drawer bistro fare. It's like a brief return to Paris each time.
Great dining experience with an authentic and warm atmosphere
By 070543 on 7/2/2007
If you are looking for good food, service, and a lively warm ambience - then this is a great find. The personable and authentic feel of this french 'bar a vin' makes it one of my favorite restaurants in the city, not to mention the extensive wine list, exceptional mussels and frites, and strawberry balsamic dessert. This is a GEM of a restaurant, open for late-night dining, just as great for dates/special occasions as for dining solo at the bar, knowledgeable staff, and most importantly - consistent quality of food and service. Highly recommended!
By lolly on 5/9/2007
I have been coming to Le Bateau Ivre for quite some time - it's conveniently located for an after-work meal and I like the wine list. However, my latest visit there will also be my last: we were forced to wait for ages (with a prior reservation) and the service was nothing short of shocking. The servers (there were a few, all equally incompetent) brought us the wrong dishes and in the wrong order, while skipping others altogether. We received no apology from the staff or the manager. To add insult to injury, they were out of our choice of wine (not the most obvious selection), which makes me question whether their wine list is as good in practice as it is on paper. I have always felt that the food at Bateau could be better, with their too-salty steak tartar and too-rich mussels, but went for the ambiance and the wine. After the last experience I will have to find a different after-work French.
By VikkiTee on 7/7/2005
This place is adorable. Great place to bring a date or go out for a drink with a friend. Its tiny. The ambiance is great. A little dark inside with candles scattered about. Please get the mussels! Its an appetizer but I ate it as my dinner and it was plenty. The wine list has so many choices, its overwhelming. The service was nice and polite and nothing took long. The crowd was mostly couples and small groups of friends. I love how the front of the reastaurant is all open doors so you almost feel like you're outside. Overall a pleasant experience and I can't wait to go back for the mussels!
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