Buzz Around L’Abeille…NYC Restaurant Review


Every year my amazing daughter generously treats her parental units to a celebratory anniversary dinner.

This year she reserved L’Abeille, a new French restaurant in Tribeca.

Joël Robuchon and Per Se vets have opened the upscale restaurant where you can experience a six-course tasting menu for $185 (with an optional $115 wine pairing) as well as an à la carte menu.

L’Abeille which seats 54 serves classic French food with Japanese influences.

Chef Nagae practices the skillful balancing of tradition with the contemporary tenets of the new bistronomy technique.

You are welcomed into an intimate dining room with green velvet booths and brass accents.

Once seated, we read our thoughtful anniversary card from the restaurant and then decided to take the a la carte route.

I selected the Foie Gras Torchon with caramelized mango and spicy chutney which was smooth as silk and tasty with unexciting toast points.

David ordered the Seasonal Salad from the Market with a few meager vegetables. It was crispy and fresh, but the $28 price tag was ridiculous.

My main course was Seared Scallops with Sake Braised Artichoke which was attractively presented, but too briny for me ($52).

I switched with my husband who had selected the Grilled Maitake Mushroom with Hazelnuts and Farro Risotto which was unique and quite flavorful, but proved to be overly salty ($36).

The Cheese Platter was delicious accompanied by a tiny portion of appetizing honey and preserves ($22).

We passed on dessert, although the restaurant graciously sent over a delightful chocolate covered treat which was light and fluffy.

The delectable Canelé and individual Chocolates filled with yuzu were outrageous.

I must say the service was impeccable.

L’Abeille (French for bee) is helmed by 34 year-old chef Mitsunobu Nagae who brings years of experience cooking at acclaimed Joel Robuchon restaurants around the world. At L’Abeille, he oversees five other chefs, all under the age of 30.

Perhaps we should have indulged in the 6-course   tasting menu.

 Sadly, I must admit I am done with restaurants in Tribeca.

They are always expensive and geographically inconvenient for me. They remind me of the restaurants on Abbott Kinney Boulevard in Venice (Los Angeles)…impressive for the neighborhood, but disappointing in the overall restaurant scheme of things.

Honestly, despite the occasion and our desire to love the beautifully prepared food it was not outstanding, especially for the extremely high prices.

I have no choice…I cannot buy into creating a “buzz” around L’Abeille.

L’Abeille 413 Greenwich Street New York. Open Tuesday-Thursday 5:30-10pm, Friday and Saturday 5:30-11pm. Reservations on Resy.

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