With wine lists the length of books, indecipherable menus, and evermore bizarre fusion cuisine, dining out in New York City can be complicated. But there’s an antidote to the madness: Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecôte.
You’ll half expect the Eiffel Tower to be gleaming through the window beside your table at this posh midtown restaurant, whose first venue opened in Paris in 1959. The New York outpost of Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecôte stays true to the original, right down to its old-school bistro decor of wood paneling, leather banquettes, and paper-topped tables, making it a perfect spot for French-influenced date night.
Dining here is blissfully simple. This eatery takes no reservations and has no menus, just a single prix fixe of salad, steak, and french fries. This simple philosophy was an instant sensation and has attracted a cult following since the restaurant first opened. You’ll see exactly why when you trade the high-stakes pressure of ordering the right meal for the undivided attention you can now give to your date. You still have your choice of beverage and how you want your steak prepared, though Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecôte recommends either rare or extra rare.
You’ll barely start sipping your Bordeaux before your food begins arriving on your table. Your night begins with a green salad topped with a mustard vinaigrette and walnuts, a healthy, refreshing starter that sets you up for the main event: a mound of crisp, salty french fries, and thin slices of entrecôte, otherwise known as strip steak. No need to worry about your food getting cold — the steak is split into two servings, with the second half kept warm while you “ooh” and “ahh” over the delectable taste of the first.
Play a little culinary game and take turns guessing what ingredients comprise the delicious mystery sauce that your steak is doused in. The recipe is a closely guarded secret, but it is said to include copious amounts of butter mixed with herbs, mustard, and cream, while the secret ingredient is rumored to be chicken liver essence.
Die-hards compare their love of Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecôte to the best kind of addiction. Drop by with your special someone and see what the hype is all about.