158 8th Ave (between 17th and 18th St, Chelsea)
Fatty Kat Eats: Tartare Maison, Pommes Frites
A few of my favorite restaurants in the city belong to Little Wisco restaurant group. Their newest addition, Montmartre, hits the spot once again. They have a solid formula in place: creative and delicious food + rustic interior + hip(ster) servers + feel good hip hop and R&B = awesome restaurant.
Montmartre is the group's first outpost away from the West Village, but Chelsea is just a quick Citibike ride away. The adorable courtyard is the focal point of the restaurant, which provides the interior dining room with a nice view and creates mucho romantic vibes at night.
As for the food, we weren't entirely wow'ed, but there were some big hitters. We started with an amuse bouche of Pumpkin Spread and bread. Meh, the bread was just plain...bread, and the pumpkin spread wasn't anything spectacular.
One of the night's specials was the Duck Prosciutto Flatbread with apple, yogurt and red onion. The prosciutto was phenomenal on its own--incredibly thin and soft. All the ingredients together made for a delicate bite that was gone in 1.4 seconds. This flatbread was almost as thin as a nacho, so it was merely a tease for our tastebuds.
Montmartre's Tartare Maison was like woah! The top sirloin was silky and delicious in every way possible, while the bone marrow toast and dressed romaine gave the meat a nice crunch. This dish could have easily satiated 2 people, so listen to your mom and share. If raw egg bother you, go home!
The Roasted Skate with nori (seaweed), golden raisins and cauliflower puree sounded great on paper but wasn't very inspiring on a plate. Those ingredients are some of my favorite things, but the nori coating made the fish too salty. Luckily, the plump raisins and cauliflower puree disguised some of that saltiness.
Bomb ass Pommes Frites. Our server confirmed they were seasoned with onion powder among many other things, so I wasn't crazy in thinking they tasted like sour cream and onion chips (in the best way possible). These fries were thin and crispy, just how I like it. I could have easily killed one portion by myself, but I did the adult thing where you deprive yourself of fatty goodness by sharing with your friends.
We went in a different direction with the Blueberry Cake. For some reason, I had a vision of L'Artusi's olive oil cake while I was ordering, perhaps with some blueberries? The mint creme fraiche gave the small cake a subtle decadence that wasn't lost on me. The blueberry jam (for lack of a better word) was super fresh and not very sweet. This dessert didn't end up fulfilling my vision, but it was great nonetheless.
I'm sure Montmartre will get on par with its sister restaurants in the near future. The food has a little catching up to do, but the service, ambiance and hip hop are already bumping.