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In Paris at the Empire State Building

Le Parisien Restaurant
163 East 33rd Street
New York, NY 10016
1 (212) 889-5489

If you think French bistros are pretty common in New York City, you may change your mind after visiting the one on 33rd Street in Murray Hill. There is nothing common about Le Parisien.

This petite restaurant stands out as more than just another place that serves delicious French food with wines to match. Step through the door and you actually feel as if you have been transported to a cozy bistro on the streets of Paris. Zagat describes it as, "Paris without the airfare."

This is the real deal... with take out!

Paris a la Manhattan
In July of 2010 Le Parisien added the thrill and authentic feel of an intimate French bistro to the neighborhood. You may be in the shadow of the Empire State Building, but you may expect to walk outside after your meal and see the Eiffel Tower or at least the Seine!

The exterior is not impressive

A doorway, possibly with a regular patron sitting at a small table smiling as you walk in. A large window next to the door with another table showcasing happy diners. Step inside and you see a restaurant taking up a space the size of a large living room.

The space defines the spirit
Small tables that seat two, but that can be set together for a larger party, are arranged against the walls. The tiny bar in front and the kitchen in the back are the bookends framing your meal. The waitress may pull up a chair to discuss the specials or suggest a wine pairing if it is not too busy.

The Murray Hill college crowd that clogs the bars and restaurants tends to gather at trendier spots. You are more likely to hear a French accent or authentic New York vowels at Le Parisien than loud OMG squeals and cell phone conversations. Sorority sisters and frat brothers are welcome, but in pairs or trios that blend well with the other guests.

The menu focuses on bien manger
Serving sizes are generous but not extreme. If you are not on a size 0 diet frenzy, it is easy to have two appetizers and an entree from the dinner menu... and still have room for dessert.

Chef Johnathan Masse and owner Christian Merand bring years of culinary experience to the table. From the fresh bread and the mix of French and new world wines to the plating and lighting, every detail is orchestrated to create a harmony that fills both the heart and the stomach.

Start a dinner off with filet mignon carpaccio served with shaved Asiago cheese and truffled mushrooms or try a daily special. All the patrons are in agreement that the chef's specials are out of the ordinary taste delights. If nothing else piques your interest, try asking for a smaller serving of one of their delicious mussel entrees.

The potato puree has just the right mix of cream and butter to showcase the fresh flavor. The french fries... ah... the french fries!! Crispy perfection. Fresh vegetables are part of the design of each dish, but can also be ordered as sides.

There are no bad choices on the menu. You may find that you join the regulars who come back time and again to sample the pan roasted half chicken with wild mushrooms, potato puree and tarragon pan jus or the roasted rainbow trout with a skin spiced and crisped for a taste experience that must be repeated.

Don't think about skipping dessert. The fresh apple tart, the crème brûlée, the profiteroles, meringue floating on vanilla custard are all temptations worth the splurge. Add some Muscat wine and/or espresso and enjoy the last moments of your meal. In true European style, there will be no bill thrown hastily on your table to rush you away.

Le Parisien Bistro Restaurant at 163 East 33rd Street in Murray Hill also serves lunch daily and brunch on Saturday and Sunday. The BLT gets raves at lunch and the Eggs Florentine draws the brunch crowd.

The price range is very reasonable by New York City standards. A dinner for two will range from about $40 for a simple meal to $200 with all courses and wines. After dinner take a walk around the corner and enjoy the close up view of the Empire State Building -- to remind yourself that this gem of a Paris bistro is really in New York,

Bon Appetite!

More resources and reviews of Le Parisien NYC:

Open Table Reserve at Le Parisien

Trip Advisor Le Parisien


also see -> Ruth's Chris Steak House Review | Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade



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