French Twist: A boutique dining experience steps from The Plaza

April 2014 | by | in Scoop

Screen Shot 2014-04-30 at 3.37.33 PMGetting into the new restaurant Beautique is a bit of a process, as the entrance is a small doorway tucked in between the Paris Theatre and an office building. I walked past it twice.

Once you’re in, though, it feels as though you’ve stepped inside of a disco ball. At the entrance, a full-time piano player and a hostess direct you down a mirrored flight of stairs. From there, you enter a dramatic space inspired by Coco Chanel’s Paris quarters. Think rose petal wallpaper and suede seats by Marc Dizon and Valerie Pasquiou Interiors.

Helmed by chef Craig Hopson (formerly of Le Cirque) and managing director Frank Roberts (formerly of Rose Bar in the Gramercy Park Hotel), Beautique offers a mix of fresh and seasonal ingredients that put a slight twist on comforting, traditional classics. 

To start, the bigeye tuna tartare, served with clementines on a bed of avocado and sesame crackers, offers an excellent counterpoint to the cocktails designed by mixologist Charlotte Voisey. Between exotic drinks like The Gabrielle (ginger, gin, oolong tea, simple syrup and lavender bitters) and classic combinations like The King of Clubs (scotch, ginger liqueur and bitters), Voisey displays a versatile range in the cocktail menu reflective of the dining experience at large. 

Other must-haves include the red snapper, prepared with melted leeks and walnut granola, and the oysters served with pear mignonette—an update to the classic pairing (pun intended) that adds a nice acidic counterpoint to the fresh salinity of the shellfish. And don’t forget a side of fiddlehead ferns;  I had no idea ferns could be so delicious, or that they’re the second most likely food to kill you when prepared wrong (sea urchin being the first). 

Beautique, with its Jean Paul Gaultier barstools and haute interior, offers a below-street level dining experience ensconced in luxury.

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