One of the perks of living in NYC is Restaurant Week, which comes twice a year. With affordable prix fixe lunches and dinners at high-end restaurants, I’m always making reservations to enjoy a night of fine dining. My friends and I made reservations to a French restaurant called Artisanal Fromagerie and Bistro for a birthday celebration. Many restaurants participating in Restaurant Week often require a dress code of business casual, so my friends and I dressed up, put our heels on, and headed out to Park Avenue.
Artisanal is extremely well known for their cheese fondue, which I had been determined to try upon hearing about it. So as soon as we were seated and ordered our drinks, I went ahead and ordered the Artisanal Blend cheese fondue with crudités and fingerling potatoes. The fondue is not part of the Restaurant Week menu, but since the restaurant is highly known for their fondue, we were more than excited to try it. Since the restaurant was having a busy night, we had to wait a while before finally getting our cheese fondue. Nonetheless, the cheese fondue was the perfect combination of different types of cheeses and a nutty flavor. The potatoes and crudités dipped into the warm cheese mix was a heavenly start to our dinner. The fondue also came with vegetables that were great for dipping, and we were all satisfied with the rich flavor of the cheese.
We also ordered the salmon rillette as our hors d’oeuvre and wild mushroom risotto as our entrée. Partly full from the fondue, we didn’t feel the need to order separate dishes, but rather, decided to share a 3-coursemeal. The salmon rillette was absolutely delicious and fresh, a light hors d’oeuvre that all three of us enjoyed. The seasoning on the salmon was perfect and it went well with the crispy baguette served alongside it. The wild mushroom risotto was a simple, yet elegant dish that was cooked well. I loved how clean and fresh everything tasted, with no excess seasoning or flavors added to the traditional dishes. For dessert, we ordered the crème brulee ‘le cirque’, which was also cooked with great finesse. The crème brulee wasn’t overly sweet or creamy, but had the perfect texture and brulee on top. The rich custard of the crème brulee had a great vanilla flavor and was a nice finishing touch to our entire meal.
With a classic interior exuding a very French aura, Artisanal is perfect for a dinner date. With a lively ambiance and friendly service, the restaurant itself is classy and high-quality, serving only well-prepared food. Given the time and chance, I would definitely revisit Artisanal for another Restaurant Week experience.