Le CouCou

Since the doors opened, Le CouCou has become the hottest and hardest reservation in town to get.  Through the goodness of a friend, I was able to get a table.  I discovered that there is a reason the place is packed a month in advance.  The room is beautiful and inviting, the service is quality, the food is delish and what I loved most of all is having a slice of Europe in downtown NYC.  If you close your eyes, you could be in Paris but of course that makes sense as Daniel Rose, an American, just spent over the last decade at a Spring, a small jewel of a restaurant that he opened to the joy of anyone who walked in the door.

Even the bar sparkles.

There are three sections to the menu, not including dessert.  The first section are small treats for the table or for yourself.  We all shared.  Small roasted stalks of asparagus topped with bigeye tuna and a smoky vinegar.  A perfect spring dish.

Poached sliced leeks dribbled with a light vinaigrette and toasted hazelnuts.  Classic french dish.

Chicken terrine with raw uni on the size.  Insanely rich but so insanely complex.  Slathering a piece of uni on top took decadence to another level.

I did not do a lot of tasting of other plates this evening so I can’t account for everyone else’s meals except for mine although I did taste one bite of Fred’s appetizer.  He loved his main course so much that I couldn’t grab a bite before he had eaten it all up.  I started with the raw scallops sitting in a rhubarb juice with a shot of horseradish.  Extremely light and fresh.

Salad of lobster tail salad deconstructed with green lettuce, tomatoes, basil and a paprika cream sauce to be poured over the top.  Every ingredient stands on its own.  Just excellent.

For dinner, I had the lamb chops.  Two perfectly grilled lamb chops served with roasted eggplant, and tiny tomatoes stuffed with choulder and chard.  It doesn’t sound as special as it is.  This is European cooking at its finest.  Each flavor sings, everything is incredibly well sourced, and the combination of the flavors work so well together yet they can stand individually by themselves.

Dessert was shared by all.   Chocolate mousse…divine!

Rice pudding with pistachios.  Another winner.

Le CouCou is European fine dining in NYC.  Rose takes classic French dishes and brings them into the 21st Century.  His touch is light and deep at the same time.   I am returning in a month…and I can hardly wait to go back.