Midtown West (Theater District): Saju (French)

Saju | Winter 2013

Out and About with @SingleGalNYC (yep, another foodie adventure)

Sometimes you have a plan and then it doesn’t quite start out the way you want it to…  We’d planned to have a wonderful foodie adventure at Chez Jacqueline. We’d talked about it, tweeted about it, texted about it — probably even dreamed about it.  (Actually, we probably dreamed about the escargot we kept talking, texting and tweeting about.)  But, in the end, we had a major glitch and, well, Chez Jacqueline was not to be. *cries*

But, thank goodness @SingleGalNYC had a Plan B.  See, these are the kinds of friends you need in your life.  There’s a problem.  What problem?  No problem.

Confession:  I think I would have had the most disturbing meltdown for a grown woman right there on the sidewalk adjacent to 42nd Street on a Friday evening at the height of rush hour and a million pedestrians, if we hadn’t been able to have French food for dinner.  I mean, this was on my mind ALL WEEK.

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I’d walked by it probably hundreds of times, but:

  1. I had no idea it was a French bistro.
  2. I had no idea it was a stone’s throw away from “44” at The Royalton.
  3. I had no idea it was a stone’s throw away from  “The Bar” at The Lambs Club | @thelambsclub, one of my favorite Theater District bar scenes.

Enter our Plan B:  Saju, a charming French bistro.  Actually, the signage isn’t distinctive, so you’d probably walk right by it (as I obviously did).

What a pleasant surprise.

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My overall impression of the restaurant?  It reminded me of a traditional bistro in France. From the brown and wood tones, to the bistro bar seats, to the red and white checkered serviettes (napkins), to the menu, and the staff, I was pleasantly surprised.  From the outside, there’d be no clue about what existed inside.  It was cozy, but the feeling is just what I’d expect of a bistro.  (Note: The only thing that was a bit unusual, was sound of 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s rhythm and blues being piped through the speakers.  When I think “French Bistro”, I don’t usually expect to hear Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” or Barry White’s “Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love, Baby.”  Someone obviously liked the Original Overweight Lover. *blink*  However, the tunes were so great, it didn’t bother me after a while.)

And the staff?  We interacted with very few.  Our waiter, who was French, was quite the charmer.  He was attentive, even through the bustling pre-theater dinner rush.  Actually, he asked us as soon as we were settled if we were in a hurry. He would have made an effort to get out of there as quickly as possible.  Thankfully, for him, we were in no hurry.

Saju: Escargot

As for the food… Pure deliciousness.  Can we just talk about the escargot for a minute?  The texture of the snails were absolute perfection, soft, but not chewy — slightly salty, maybe, but nothing we need to harp on.  And the buttery, saucy goodness?  Oh my!  I wanted to lick the plate. O_o  (I decided it was best to use the bread instead.)  If you’ve never tried escargot, don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it.  Actually, I’d caution you against getting it from just anywhere. You really need to go to a French restaurant that gets high marks in classic French cuisine.  Because bad escargot is the worst!  (Think stomach ache or E.R.)

Okay, so getting back to this…what else did I have?  Well, you know I had the escargot, but also had two other appetizers  (I skipped ordering an entrée):  French Onion Soup and Salmon Tartare.  @SingleGalNYC ordered the Escargot as an appetizer, also, and had what looked like the most delicious Grilled Chicken Breast Salad, complete with sliced apples, as an entree.  We shared a Crème Brûlée for dessert.  (It was a tough choice.  Our alternative was the Apple Tart.  Hmmmm…maybe next time.)

Um…we have to talk about the Crème Brûlée.  That thing was so in-credibly smooth.  I mean, as smooth as you can imagine.  No lumps.  No bumps.  The texture was like buddah.  You could have taken that thing and schmeared it over a slice of bread.  It was that smooth and soft.  All I can say is, “Wow.”  One of the best tasting ones I have had in I don’t know how long.

Oh, before I neglect to include it, here’s the dinner menu.

So, that was our Friday evening trip to France in the New York City Theater District.  We’ll return, I’m sure.  C’est magnifique!

P.S.  The night wasn’t over once dinner was over.  Of course not.  We headed to “The Bar” at The Lambs Club for drinks.  Ladies (and interested gents), I’ve got a write up for that too.  Jump on over.

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Saju: Escargot - The first snail...

Saju: Escargot - The bread sopping...er, dipping...

Saju: Grilled Chicken Breast Salad

Saju: French Onion Soup

Saju: The cheesy goodness of the French Onion Soup

Saju: Salmon Tartare

Saju: After dinner treat...

Saju: Dessert - Creme Brulee

Saju: The Creme Brulee was creamy goodness...


One thought on “Midtown West (Theater District): Saju (French)

  1. Pingback: There’s something about a man in a crisp white shirt and jacket and black tie (A post for the ladies) | brainypintsizer

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