Best Thing We Ate

Best Thing We Ate: Steak Tartare at French Louie

By Kelly Dobkin  |  March 21, 2014

It's not often that Boerum Hill gets a restaurant opening as exciting as French Louie, a new French Bistro-inspired American restaurant on Atlantic Avenue. The folks behind longtime standby Buttermilk Channel are the masterminds behind this new hotspot and French Louie is already shaping up to become a neighborhood fixture itself. On a recent Tuesday evening, we sat down for a meal that began with smoked sardines with dulse butter on rye toasts; poached prawns (with fried heads) and aioli; pork and rabbit rillettes huckleberry mustard, cornichon and ficelle; and last but not least, a steak tartare with chili oil and pickled mustard seed.

Steak tartare is having a bit of a moment, as takes on the classic dish can be found on just about every menu in the city right now (Estela's sunchoke-laden version being our current fave). This one had a subtle sweetness about it, countered by the acidic tang of the pickled mustard seed and the fattiness of the single egg yolk on top; chopped cornichons and shards of bread made the perfect flavor mates for the buttery meat. Our cocktail of choice, the Third Rail (mezcal, tequila, lime and ginger), washed the whole bite down with a citrusy wallop of heat. All in all, some of the best starters and tartare we've had in recent memory.