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Best French restaurants in NYC

Top 15 Best French Restaurants in NYC

New York is a diverse culinary destination. Famed chefs from around the world run flagship restaurants that feature characteristic fare from their home countries, sometimes with unique twists on classic recipes. if you are looking for the best French restaurants in NYC, you’ve come to the perfect place, as we shall explore the best French restaurants in NYC, their food, and what makes them unique.

The French eating scene in New York is widely regarded as one of the city’s greatest treasures, with a wide range of elegant fine dining restaurants and classic contemporary bistros serving superb French food.

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Best French Restaurants in NYC

To help you get started on your own culinary adventure, we’ve compiled a list of fifteen great French restaurants in New York so you can discover the right setting for an authentic French meal while visiting New York.

1. Daniel

Daniel

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Daniel

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Visit Daniel, the flagship French restaurant of famed chef and restaurateur Daniel Boulud, for an outstanding meal in one of the best French restaurants in NYC

Head Chef Eddy Leroux, who was raised in Northern France and learned the trade alongside several Michelin-starred chefs throughout the world, currently runs Daniel. Daniel has two Michelin stars and has wowed New York’s dining scene since the early 1990s.

A lunch at Daniel is an unforgettable gastronomic experience. A refined four-course seasonal prix-fixe meal for $188 or a delicious seven-course tasting menu for $275 is available to diners.

2. La Baraka

La Baraka restaurant
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La Baraka

We recommend La Baraka in New York for delicious Tunisian-accented French cuisine. Since the 1970s, this family-run restaurant in Queens has served healthy, home-style foods that reflect French tradition while exemplifying North African ingredients.

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La Baraka, one of the best French restaurants in NYC, is famous for introducing New Yorkers to couscous, a trademark dish of North African descent.

La Baraka describes the dish that sparked the movement as “grainy semolina, itself called couscous, finished with flank, chicken, lamb kebab, and merguez.” La Baraka still offers their legendary couscous after more than four decades.

3. Le Rock

Le Rock restaurant
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Le Rock

Le Rock, one of the best French restaurants in NYC, is an exceptional new French brasserie from the celebrated restaurant group behind Frenchette, and is one of our New York City favorites.

It is located in the middle of Rockefeller Center, one of New York’s famous cultural landmarks. Le Rock is a much-needed addition to a neighborhood of Manhattan that hasn’t always been known for its culinary offerings.

Le Rock delivers all the French classics like escargots bourguignon and brandade de morue with an unusual and charming combination of tradition and modern panache in an art déco dining room that commemorates the history of Rockefeller Center and the treasured bygone French era.

4. Délice & Sarrasin

Délice & Sarrasin restaurant
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Délice & Sarrasin

A 100% vegan French restaurant is virtually an oxymoron, yet Délice & Sarrasin in New York’s West Village has accomplished the nearly difficult feat of perfecting the French classics with unique and delectable vegan reinventions.

The menu may appear familiar at first glance, with items such as melted and roasted brie, steak tartare, escargots in garlic butter, and grilled scallops, yet no meat products are used in the kitchen.

Even the wines at Délice & Sarrasin are sourced to guarantee that there are no added fining agents during the winemaking process, such as nonvegan proteins like gelatin and casein.

If you are looking for a true vegan restaurant that offers great French cuisine, then you should try Délice & Sarrasin, which, by the way, is one of the best French restaurants in NYC.

5. Balthazar

Balthazar restaurant
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Balthazar

Balthazar is one of the best French restaurants in NYC that has been serving exceptional French cuisine in SoHo since the late 1990s.

Given recent media coverage surrounding a disruptive celebrity guest at Balthazar, the restaurant’s name may seem familiar, but don’t let that hubbub overwhelm this classic French restaurant on New York’s famed Spring Street.

Balthazar is owned by restaurateur Keith McNally, who also runs The Odeon and Pastis. It is an enviable brunch destination to both see and be seen.

6. Amelie

Amelie restaurant
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Amelie

Amelie, one of the best French restaurants in NYC, is a modest French wine bar and café in the West Village, is the place to go if you want a visit to the streets of Paris. Amelie is a Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurant and for a good reason.

The restaurant offers a wide range of wines from throughout the world, with a special emphasis on French wines from Bordeaux, the Rhône Valley, the Loire Valley, and Gamay.

In Amelie, there are various biodynamic and natural wines available because of its strong interest in making wines free of preservatives and extra substances.

7. Le Coucou

Le Coucou

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Le Coucou

Le Coucou is a one-Michelin-star French restaurant in Lower Manhattan where you can enjoy refined variants of all French classics in a luxury dining area with a lively view of the open kitchen.

Le Coucou, led by chef Daniel Rose, won the James Beard Foundation accolade for Best New Restaurant in the U.S. in 2017.

The food at Le Coucou is as interesting as the excellent service and the amazing wine and cocktails, making every trip to Le Coucou exciting. So if you are looking for an exceptional upscale dining experience in one of the best French restaurants in NYC, then try Le Coucou.

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8. Le Garage

Le Garage restaurant
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Le Garage

If you’re in Brooklyn’s Bushwick district, head to Le Garage, a mother-daughter neo-bistro with wonderful seasonal dishes and sophisticated specialty cocktails.

All the cuisine at La Garage is inspired by chef Catherine Allswang’s recipes, which she developed and honed over the course of her career, first in Paris and then in San Francisco.

Rachel Allswang, her daughter, is an interior designer who has dedicated herself to introducing modern French cuisine to Brooklyn.

When at Le Garage you should try the mushroom bourguignon with creamy polenta, the house-made foie gras with kumquat confiture, or the duck confit with pickled celery root and butternut squash gratin and you will have a glimpse of why it is one of the best French restaurants in NYC.

9. Raoul’s

Raoul's
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Raoul’s

Raoul’s is a much-loved New York French bistro that dates back to the 1970s. It is still a lively restaurant in SoHo, staying true to its roots, and has a strong and loyal following.

French classics like Dover sole “Grenobloise” with spinach and steak au poivre with hand-cut French fries, capers, and lemon are on the menu.

If you want a wonderful night out with good food and a lively atmosphere, Raoul’s is the place to go. Large meals cost between $35 to $76.

10. Le Bernardin

Le Bernardin

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Le Bernardin

Le Bernardin makes the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list on a regular basis. Chef Eric Ripert’s three Michelin-starred French haute cuisine restaurant is one of the best French restaurants in NYC, famous for its beautiful upscale seafood dishes.

Le Bernardin originated in Paris, where it was founded in 1972 by siblings Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze. The siblings chose to bring Le Bernardin to New York City after winning two Michelin stars.

After Gilbert Le Coze died abruptly in 1994, Eric Ripert joined the restaurant and helped it gain the fame and recognition it still has today.

11. Jean-Georges

Jean-Georges

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Jean-Georges

Jean-Georges, one of the best French restaurants in NYC, is a flagship restaurant of French chefs and restaurateurs Jean-Georges and it serves some of New York’s innovative and delicious French dishes.

Jean-Georges, which currently has two Michelin stars, is located at the base of Central Park and serves globally influenced modern twists on French haute cuisine.

You can choose between the excellent six-course omnivore tasting menu for $268 or the delicious ten-course omnivore tasting menu for $338.

Both courses have king crab with vermouth fondue, Nishiki rice, and nori, as well as golden amadai with green asparagus, clams, and a spring garlic-sorrel jus. If you want a culinary treat of a lifetime then take a trip to Jean-Georges

12. Frenchette

 Frenchette restaurant
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Frenchette

Frenchette is a Tribeca-based French brasserie with an ever-changing menu that features traditional French dishes with a modern spin.

The restaurant is owned by the same company that owns another of our favorites, Le Rock, and the food at Frenchette is equally impressive earning it the Best New Restaurant award by the James Beard Foundation in 2019.

Frenchette, unlike Le Rock, has less outward pomp and ceremony, but what it lacks in glamor and glam, it more than makes up for with its wonderful cuisine, which includes Peconic escargots, brouillade with soft scrambled eggs, and persillade.

With smoked lamb rib, saucisson, pig belly, and Tarbais beans, Frenchette’s cassoulet is the ultimate showpiece and of the best French restaurants in NYC.

13. T. Brasserie

T. Brasserie
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T. Brasserie

T. Brasserie is Tin Building’s exceptional French restaurant, delivering rich French dishes in an affluent atmosphere that works equally well for a date night as it does for a business meal.

The menu here is both nourishing and beautiful, featuring a Gruyère puff pastry bun topped with a cheeseburger and green chili mustard, and baked brie with pistachio, lemon jam, and honey.

For its signature French cuisine, you should try the quintessential steak tartare with slices of grilled French baguette or the meaty escargot drenched in herb-garlic butter.

14. Pastis

Pastis
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Pastis

Pastis, the legendary French bistro, has returned to Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, where it helped usher in a new age in the 1990s.

Pastis, which is owned and run by Stephen Starr and Keith McNally of Balthazar and The Odeon, has reopened in New York after closing in 2014.

While the restaurant has moved a block away from its former location, the food that made Pastis famous is still as good as it was years ago. Pastis’ cuisine is as tasty as they are comforting, making Pastis one of the best French restaurants in NYC.

This is the place to go if you want a French lunch that is both reliable and nourishing. We recommend the salade niçoise with confit tuna in a Dijon vinaigrette or the Gruyère omelet with fresh herbs for a midday meal.

15. The Odeon

The Odeon
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The Odeon

Since the 1980s, the Odeonll has been a fixture on the New York dining scene. Andy Warhol, Robert De Niro, and John Belushi dined at the Tribeca eatery in its early days.

To this day, The Odeon still appeals to its loyal customers who go to West Broadway to sample classic dishes such as steak tartare and croque monsieur.

Order an omelet at The Odeon with your choice of French fries or mixed greens, just like The Barefoot Contessa actress Ina Garten, who never leaves Paris without eating a classic omelet.

Summary

It is much more than just eating when you sit down to a French supper. The French dining experience provides an opportunity to travel through history and tradition.

This list of the best French restaurants in NYC features restaurants that will provide you with the best French culinary experience possible which you should try at least once.

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