We were leisurely walking in Chelsea when we saw Le Grainne Cafe, a French restaurant that was packed for a late Saturday brunch (when we arrived for sure, the restaurant emptying as we left). You would think that the name is French, but in fact not really. Yes, there is a word for grain that is very close to that (La Graine), but in fact, Grainne is the name of the Irish owner of the restaurant.
The start of the meal was perfect, with some escargots that were delicious. I was not sure though why they gave me the utensil to hold the shell as there was...no shell!
It was not served with bread and I asked for some that took a very long time to come, to the point that I had to remind the waiter as he proceeded to remove the plate. Thank God, I was faster than him because that butter sauce is so divine, you cannot leave a bit of it and have to dip some bread in it.
Next was the ham and cheese crepe, served with a salad. I was excited as they had a nice selection and was also set to try their butter & sugar one for dessert. Well, I quickly removed that idea from my mind as the crepe was passable. Not only the batter, overcooked, was not great, but on top of that, they put too much pepper in it. Too bad, because at least there was a lot of ham and cheese in it. I sucked it up as it took forever for the food to come and I was not really in the mood to wait another 30 minutes. I could not believe that they would do such a bad job: crepes are fairly easy to make!
Jodi fortunately did not choose a crepe and went for the salad Nicoise, made with Ahi tuna (the original recipe is canned tuna). I though that that salad looked a bit sad, with a small portion of tuna that I do not think was high grade, just a little bit of tomato and no egg as the staff forgot them, surprising considering that it was a $19 salad.
For beverages, Jodi got and Orangina (carbonated orange drink quite popular in France) and I got their lemonade that was just ok.
We left very disappointed and between the food and the very, very slow service, it was for sure not a meal I would remember...positively. Yes, next time, I will pass on Le Grainne Cafe!
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Le Grainne Cafe - 183 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011