Every season, New York gets treated to a fresh roster of buzzy eateries that trendy people and their trendy friends just have to go to. Less often, however, do the taste-making critics agree with the clout crowd. (Remember what they said about The Lobster Club?)
Frenchette may have opened all the way back in April, but this summer it became the most coveted spot in town. A foodie-wide desire no doubt exacerbated by a recent review in the New York Times, in which the always honest, sometimes brutal Pete Wells gave the place a gasp-worthy three out of four stars. That's really saying something.
But even Pete had a hard time getting a table. "Well-placed magazine editors with highly resourceful assistants can end up eating at 6 or 10 p.m., as I did," he said. Just check the restaurant's Resy page and you'll see he was hardly exaggerating. There are absolutely no dinner reservations available before 10 at night - and we're talking all week long. The good news, however, is that they do save tables for walk-ins, and the front bar room is first-come, first-served.
Clearly, the place is worth it. The modern brasserie in the heart of Tribeca is the brainchild of Riad Nasr and Lee Hanson, a duo who've been cooking together since 1997 under the guidance of restaurateur Keith McNally, who entrusted them with the success of his hot spots including Pastis, Schiller’s Liquor Bar and Minetta Tavern.
Frenchette, their first joint venture outside the McNally umbrella, seems to be surpassing even the most iconic of mainstays, including their first home, Balthazar.
According to Pete Wells, the succulent French-inspired menu is "full of dishes worth planning a night around." And you'll have to, especially if you don't have a reservation.