Monday, September 27, 2010


Even now that I am working at a French restaurant (come visit your favorite gluten-free waitress at Le Gamin in Prospect Heights!) I still cannot say no to an evening at Tartine, 253 W. 11th Street.

The food is mouth-watering, consistent, and the outdoor seating makes you feel like a celeb. It's BYOB which means you always leave feeling bubbly and glimmery, the lush greenery of the West Village casting leafy shadows along the sidewalk as you amble back to the subway. Nights like these are important to have, especially if you live in Crown Heights or Jersey City - they make you remember what your fantasy of living in New York City was all about: wine and mussels and cake.

Mussels in coconut curry broth

Sauteed chicken with spinach salad

The beauty of French cuisine is its canon: every dish is prepared with centuries of practice behind it. What I mean to say is, if something is supposed to have flour in it, the chef and the waitress both know about it. There are no thickening shortcuts. No hidden soy sauces, no additives in the broth. Everything is prepared from scratch and you can taste it.

AND MOST IMPORTANTLY: many of the desserts (prepared in-house) are also (naturally) gluten-free. Pictured here - the chocolate macaron (with ice cream). I couldn't get a good shot of the dacquoise cake, which is an absolute dream. It's amazing what they can do with butter.
WHO NEEDS FLOUR when you have almonds and meringue? Flour: the lazy man's baking ingredient.

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