Raoul's, is without a doubt New York's coolest and best Bistro. Yes, there's Baltahzar and Patis, which are quite good, if a little commercial and without the charm and total package that makes Raoul's in my book, the city's top Bistro. Total package, Raoul's has it. Maybe not the best food, but it is quite good with just about all the Bistro Classics either on the menu or showing up as specials. On the menu you'll find classic Frisee Sald, Oysters, Pate Maison, Duck, and the best Steak au Poivre in town.
But although the food is good, if a bit expensive, what really makes Raoul's is its perfect Bistro atmosphere and ambiance, which not only includes the decor and great music they always play, it's also the clientele, this is the total ambiance package; the decor, music, crowd, and the wait staff. We love the decor, but as well, all through its history and as long as I've been going there
(25 years) the music at Raoul's is the best in the city. The music at Raoul's is a perfect mix of Jazz, American Standards, Rock, and R&B .. If the music is great, it goes a long way in creating a pleasant ambiance, whether you're in a restaurant, cafe, bar, cocktail lounge or wherever. If the music is awful as with the "Horrible Rap Crap" they play all over the place these days, it will completely destroy the atmosphere and ambiance .. That is unless you are one of the many millions of "tasteless morons" who happen to think that kind of NOISE "Hip Hop Rap" is good.,
So yes, as far as French Bistros in New York go, Raoul's stand atop the list as Gotham's Best. It's the Food, Ambiance, the Music, all ways great and devoid of any "Rap Crap" what-so-ever, and Thank God for that, and thank you Raoul's ...
Daniel Bellino Zwicke