Ate at Alain's on a recent Saturday night. We do not mind paying for a good meal, but it seemed a bit expensive for what it was, compared to similar restaurants in the area. It was fine, but not exceptional. (no "wow" factor) I like to feel that I am eating something that is worth leaving the house for.
We'll probably give them another try. To be fair, I don't know if it was the fault of the busy Saturday or of the recipes. I was intrigued by the menu which had some atypical and interesting choices like wild boar, sweet breads, sauerkraut etc
Even though nicely presented, some of the food was bland, like my Tarte a l'Oignon (serve with a small salad). My husband enjoyed his escargots (not garlicky enough for me) and Cassoulet.
The duck was fine, but the accompanying cute little balls of carrots were rubbery, which is unforgivable. The bread was good but the butter was excellent! We both had a glass of the Cotes du Rhone which was very good.
The Macaron Martini (they spelled it macaroon) was essentially cookies and ice cream, even though that is not necessarily a bad thing. My husband had the sorbet which was served with some fresh fruit. So if one would like something sweet and not too rich, that is a good choice.
The location could be off-putting to some, but in LA it would be totally normal for a restaurant to be in a strip mall! And actually, on the positive side, there is plenty of easy parking as opposed to being in town (Nyack)
Once you're inside it's a pleasant atmosphere. Our reservations were for 7pm which I thought would be unfashionably early but the restaurant was almost filled. It was very lively and we were able to watch all the activity from our table which was facing the bar and entry. At first I wasn't that pleased with the table location, but it turned out to be entertaining. The chef/owner, Alain is personable and bustles around making sure everyone feels welcome.. which is very smart of him.
It might not have been intentional, but probably because of them being so busy, we enjoyed a very leisurely, civilized evening and did not feel rushed.
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