La Sirene (SoHo)

For one of our dinners last fall, Lil Miss Chatterbox chose La Sirene for the Phat Friday Dinner Club. Oh la la.  This very cozy and intimate place with VERY low lighting (READ:  very romantic).  As we get closer to the restaurant, I notice we are practically facing the Holland Tunnel entrance and the skeptic in me slowly starts creeping out.  But I trust LMC so I keep mum.  Thank God, because the place was the perfect hole in the wall bistro.  Il était très mignon!  The place is very tiny so reservations are smart and being on time is smarter.  With that said, the staff was very gracious by letting us be seated without our full party being there.  I’m going to apologize for the quality of the pics because I forgot my camera at home and so was left having to resort to my camera phone.  Onto the food…

After waiting 45 mins for Dr. Knots, we decided on started on the apps.  LMC and I shared the seafood sauteed calamari and Brewmaster ordered the escargot.  The calamari were sauteed in garlic, parsley, olive oil and bread crumbs and were cooked as they should be–tender and not tough.  This was my first time trying snails so I don’t really have a bar to set what was served against.  They were cooked in a butter and garlic sauce that you could pour over anything and everything and it would still taste good.  As for the escargot, they were tougher than I expected.  I was chewing and chewing…and chewing.  I’m going to have to give it another shot to see if this is the way all escargot are supposed to be cooked.  Overall?  Better than I what I imagined as a child. 

Halfway through our apps, we were STILL waiting for Dr. Knots so we called to see where he was…”almost there.”  Uh huh.  So he said wanted to order the Goat Cheese Tart.  Perfect.  Waiter…!  By the time the tart cooked and arrived at our table, Dr. Knots was still “almost there.”  Since Brewmaster and I are fromage fiends, we helped ourselved to half of the tart.  Hey, you snooze, you lose…especially when you’re 1.5 hrs late!  The goat chesse tart was the best appetizer we ordered.  It was oh so flavorful and the cheese was smooth and very fresh.  Well, it should be flavorful considering it was made with shallots, truffles, grapes and a covered in a “veil of 90 days Aged Swiss Cheese.”  YUM!   The sauteed seafood was tasty and fresh, but it was tough to follow in the goat cheese tart’s footsteps.

The entrees were all very good, but the filet mignon topped with a perfectly seared slab of foie gras was delicious, decadent and blew the other dishes of the water.  I was so enrapped in the dish that I completely forgot to take a picture of it!  Dr Knots got it and it was a unanimous decision that it was one brilliant piece of boeuf!  To round off the rest of the entree lineup were the seafood casserole and the beef bourguignon.  They were both delicious but for those who have a slight aversion to seafood and cheese, the casserole may not be the way to go.  The bourginone is a classic dish and this was definitely traditionally prepared with no extra flair.  It was a good, hearty dish to have when it’s cold out.

We ended the night with a trifecta of ice cream and the profiteroles.  Yes, Italian profiteroles in a French venue.  What? You gotta problem wit that?!  The ice cream flavors Brewmaster opted for were mango, dark chocolate and coconut.  The mango and dark chocolate were very good, but the coconut didn’t taste like much.  The profiteroles were…well profiteroles!  Anytime you put ice cream and chocolate together and squeeze it between a light flaky pastry, you win.  And yes, that’s what she said folks.

A few other things to know about this lovely little spot.  Not only is it BYOB, but they have a local liquor store that delivers right to the restaurant!  Drink up my friends, drink up.  Also, it’s cash only.  You don’t want to show up on a date here without some paper in your pocket.  Très gênant!  This place is awesome to have in your artillary of restaurants for it’s versatility since it’s great for family dinners or a romantic date.  The prices are very reasonable considering the quality of authentic French cooking you are getting. Keep in mind that you do not have Thomas Keller cooking in the back.  You come here for their rustic, classic french bistro dishes.  Will definitely be back.  Over and over.


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