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“Pretentious atmosphere, but great food”
Review of Bouley Restaurant

Bouley Restaurant
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Ranked #12 of 13,684 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$50 - US$100
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Breakfast, After-hours, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Neighbourhood: TriBeCa
Cross street: Hudson Street
Transit: Chambers Street stop 1,2,3,A,C,E lines Brooklyn Bridge stop 4,5,6 lines City Hall stop R line
Description: Bouley features the exciting culinary talents of famed four- star Chef, David Bouley. Bouley offers French cuisine with modern Asian influences served in an elegant and intimate setting. In addition to the a la carte menu, the restaurant offers a $59 five course tasting menu for lunch, a prix fixe of three courses for $135 and $195 six course tasting menu for dinner. Parties of 8 or more may order from the tasting menu only and deposit is required to secure a reservation. Chef Bouley is always happy to accommodate all dietary needs and restrictions. Jackets are required for gentlemen at both lunch and dinner.
Dorset, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
111 reviews
110 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Pretentious atmosphere, but great food”
Reviewed 12 September 2012

If I could, I would give Bouley a 3.5 out of 5 - mainly due to service and atmosphere. Judging the food only, it would certainly be a 5 out of 5.

I went to Bouley with my husband last week for dinner and, although it was overall a good experience, I was expecting more from this 2 Michelin-starred restaurant in NY.

We decided to go for the à la carte menu as it was quite late and we normally take a few hours to go through a tasting menu properly.

Between dishes though, we were still served with a number of amuse-bouche dishes, which was nice but filling. All food was presented beautifully and tasted great.

Unfortunately we felt that the atmosphere wasn't as good as expected. We felt the place had a very pretentious and "I want to be the new France away from France" atmosphere.

My starter had a couple of pieces of hard crab shell. Having told this to the waitress, I was told that the "the crab shell was there because the crab was very fresh". Both my husband and I were speechless and very disappointed with her response. Personally I felt that, although I was trying to point out a problem that the waitress could then advise the kitchen about, there was a bit too much arrogance to admit a simple mistake - even because crab shell could have broken one's tooth!

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank pnagashima
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,663 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
63 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Worth Every Delicious Penny”
Reviewed 9 September 2012

I never really understood the big fuss people made over black truffles. Heck, I barely even liked mushrooms. That was before we dined at Bouley.

My husband and I chose this romantic location to celebrate our 5th year wedding anniversary. We couldn't have been happier with our choice. In fact, we agreed that it was the best dining experience we've ever had - anywhere.

We arrived right on time and were greeted and promptly seated. Not only is the restaurant graciously appointed, but the smell was divine. We were seated at a small table, but it didn't feel small. Also, because they placed vases of flowers between each table, we didn't feel like we were there with another party.

We ordered cocktails and asked the sommelier to choose a white wine for us. He did a wonderful job capturing the taste we wanted with the discombobulated descriptions we gave him. Unfortunately, our wine came before our cocktails, but that was OK with us. The La Pomme was wonderful. The chef sent two complimentary starters - a chilled tomato culee with ricotta and black truffle oil. Yum. The second item was a cracker with a similar cheese and black truffle oil atop. Really yum.
We opted for the chef's tasting menu and were not disappointed. Every course was as good or better that the previous. Some standouts: the mushroom plate, the salmon and the Kobe beef cheeks. The fig bread was a knockout. Hubby loved the garlic bread.

We ordered the souffle for dessert. In addition, the house sent over a pear dessert with a hand written Happy Anniversary note. It was a very nice touch. They also sent over a tiered tray of petite fours. Another super nice touch.

In total, the meal lasted about three hours. When we left, we were stuffed! They hostess handed us a nice parting gift - a lemon pound cake that made a nice breakfast the next day!

Other than getting our wine before cocktails and waiting a bit too long to order, and having to ask to get the wine refilled once, the service was fantastic. I would definitely go here again.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank mragan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Incredible lunch”
Reviewed 8 September 2012

We went to Bouley for the lunchtime tasting menu and it would be difficult to see how you could have a better experience at a restaurant. The service, ambience and food are all top class and at a very reasonable price. To top it all, there is a man who wheels round a trolley serving bread. Not only is the bread delicious, but he can cut you a slice with exact precision as to how you want it .. it's worth the visit to experience this alone!! Just a great place!

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Blueman56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manhasset, New York
Level Contributor
49 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“I want to live at Chef David Bouley's amazing restaurant”
Reviewed 6 September 2012

One of the best dining experiences of my life was at Chef David Bouley's amazing restaurant. We enjoyed the ultimate decadence, surrounded by velvet walls, savoring every morsel of Chef Bouley's choice tasting menu. I regret that I can't live here, but I will definitely return for an encore performance.

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank 30Toni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
19 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great experience”
Reviewed 6 September 2012

I've visited the restaurant with my family.
We took the five course tasting menu.
Each dish was better than the previous (and the first was amazing)
We paid 400 for 4 persons with two bottles of wine.
It was the first time I'm in this place and for sure many visits will follow
(Elegant clothing is required)

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Gili F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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