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The Place: Unsure of its Place

Yesterday, while wandering through the West Village, I stumbled upon The Place, a small and dimly lit restaurant on W. 4th St. Let me just say, it looks ultra charming. A small patio recessed from the street with twinkling lanterns hung from ceiling looked like the perfect spot to enjoy a cocktail and some good food with friends. So later that night, I dragged my boyfriend and a friend to The Place.

Needless to say, it was average. The atmosphere was comfortable and the service very pleasant, by New York standards. When I looked at the menu, everything looked so delicious, I had trouble picking something! Goat cheese ravioli, trio of duck, hanger steak, roast chicken, duck confit wrapped in filo, endive salad, salmon tartare. Ultimately, I chose the goat cheese ravioli and the duck confit in filo. My boyfriend sampled the trio of duck and my friend went for the duck pasta. Despite this impressive array of dishes, the food didn’t quite live up to my expectations. Don’t get me wrong, it was good, it just wasn’t great. In fact, it all seemed unnecessarily rich, as though the chef cooked everything with too heavy a hand. The goat cheese ravioli was decadent, yet way over-stuffed with a rich lustrous red beet sauce. The duck confit wrapped in filo, while delicious, sank to the bottom of your stomach and lingered there throughout the entire meal.

My co-diner’s meals were similarly rich. The duck pasta was slightly over-cooked, with a rich yet weakly seasoned sauce and well-cooked yet heavy (again) duck bits. The trio of duck was delightful, yet too much. The portions were gigantic and left everyone rubbing their stomachs in pain after the meal.

The Place wasn’t a total wash. The scene was lively and “cute,” something the ladies will love if taken on a date here (hint hint), and the food was tasty, if just too rich for my palette. And besides, an adorable beautifully-lit cave of a restaurant in the West Village – charming much?

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