Marvin

 

MARVIN
8114 Beverly Blvd. near N. Crescent Heights Blvd.
323.655.5553


When the urge for solo bar dining hits, I know exactly where to go: Marvin. Although I'm just starting to get a feel for my new city, the chill and lively vibe at this eclectic French bistro has already become my go-to SGD spot. I've been here twice and became friendly with Jesse the bartender and Emilie, their sommelier–not to mention their regular bar diner Lizz who I've run into both times having her #singlegirldinner too!

 The happy hour menu at Marvin is spot-on. It has oysters, two different types of toasts (ratatouille & goat cheese and jamon tomato), steak tartare, mussels, mac n' cheese, a cheeseburger and pommes frites–pretty much everything I'd love to order on any given day! They also have an incredible wine list with over 200 to choose from. 

If you're catching up with a friend for dinner, I highly recommend their rigatoni bolognaise. (It's spelled the French way here.) I've noticed that their pasta is consistently cooked perfectly al dente. This has to be noted because such a simple thing can be such a rarity. Trust me, it's not as heavy or overwhelming as it sounds–their bolognaise sauce is very refined. In fact, if you're super hungry, you may even find that ordering the rigatoni alone isn't enough! I love that they have a a variety of add-on options to boost up your meal with sections on their menu like: Cheese, Charcuterie, Snacks, Salads, Small Plates and Sides. 

Unlike spaghetti, which needs the aid of a spoon to twirl around your fork, you can just poke at the rigatoni and have a free hand to sip your wine in between bits of gossip. 

 

La Luncheonette

 

LA LUNCHEONETTE
130 Tenth Avenue at West 18th Street
212.675.0342


his husband-and-wife-owned French restaurant is located on a non-descript corner on the far reaches of West Chelsea. If you didn't know it was there, you'd likely walk right past it as I have for several years. Although, if it's one of those days where you're in the mood to "smell the roses," so to speak, you might notice a little chalkboard perched on a window that is scrawled with specials du jour like terrine de foie gras and cassoulet. In which case, go inside.

It was on the night of a blustery snowstorm that I blew right into this restaurant's entrance looking for shelter and a hot meal. I ordered the boeuf bourguignon, which was the only thing that should be ordered on such a night, and it arrived to the table looking like a still life fit for Cézanne. It was hearty and delicious and served with lovely boiled potatoes and haricots verts on the side. I washed it all down with a glass of red wine. 

Paris in New York.

 

Raoul's

Transient

RAOUL'S
80 Prince Street bet. Sullivan & Thompson Streets
212.966.3518


Raoul's is a classic French bistro that's been a mainstay on Prince Street since the 1970's. I love the SoHo chic vibe sans trendiness. Try to snag a table in their garden room, which is tucked in the back behind the kitchen and feels like a secret bohemian hideaway. I've had the seared scallops with sea urchin butter, which was very nice, but they say the way to go is with the more traditional dishes, like steak au poivre.