The United States of America is full of amazing restaurants representing cuisines from around the world. One popular choice is French cuisine in all its variations, from contemporary to traditional. We’ve put together a list of some of the best fine-dining restaurants and bistros specializing in French fare around the USA.
Dining room Courtesy of Mélisse
Located in TriBeCa in New York City, Bouley is a fine-dining restaurant featuring exquisite French cuisine by Chef David Bouley. A recipient of a Michelin star, this beautiful dining room, complete with vaulted ceilings and artworks, exudes elegance. Open for lunch and dinner daily, discerning diners can choose among three-course prix fixe menus, or a six-course tasting menu – all of which come with optional wine pairings. A typical dinner might begin with the porcini flan with Alaska Dungeness crab and quince, followed by organic Colorado lamb with zucchini-mint purée and completed with a hot Valrhona chocolate soufflé. Reservations are recommended and jackets are required for male diners.
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Café Provence is a friendly, family-owned and operated neighborhood bistro featuring progressive French fare. Located in Prairie Village, Kansas, which is part of the Kansas City metropolitan area, this lovely restaurant has garnered numerous awards over the years – including being recognized as the best restaurant in Kansas City by Zagat. Within a cozy environment, guests can savor delicacies including braised veal cheek with rosemary roasted Dutch yellow potato, leek fricassée, grape, chanterelle mushroom and a creamy sage sauce. In addition to the delectable cuisine, this bistro is also known for its outstanding service, making it a place that people return to again and again.
Inside an elegant, neo-classical interior sits Daniel, the eponymous upscale dining establishment by acclaimed Chef Daniel Boulud. Focusing on contemporary French cuisine, this two-star Michelin recipient, located on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, features seasonal fare and an exceptional wine list sure to satisfy even the most refined palates. With three-course menus for omnivores and vegetarians, a dessert list divided into fruit and chocolate options – plus a tasting menu, there is something for all tastes. Notable highlights include the Québec suckling pig served with crispy polenta, Treviso ragoût and harissa jus, and the braised Savoy cabbage with fall vegetable brunoise, caramelized salsify and black radish salad. Reservations are strongly recommended up to a month in advance.
Joël Robuchon, located inside the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, is renowned Chef Joël Robuchon’s first restaurant within the United States. Indeed, he came out of retirement to create this fine-dining masterpiece, which has garnered many awards since its inception – including the coveted three-star Michelin award. Within a stylish interior, complete with rich purple velvet booths, gastronomes can feast upon exquisite French fare chosen from prix fixe or à la carte menus. Notable dishes include truffled langoustine ravioli with charred cabbage, the French hen with roasted foie gras and braised potatoes au jus and the raspberry milk mousse medley with earl grey puffed rice krispies. Between the innovative cuisine and impeccable service, this is one unforgettable culinary experience.
Established by Stephen Starr in the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., Le Diplomate is a lovely bistro specializing in traditional French dishes. Featuring a zinc bar, bistro tables and chairs, mosaic tiles and sidewalk dining, guests will feel as though they’ve been transported to a Parisian cafe. A comfortable place where guests can linger over a cup of coffee and a croissant while reading the newspaper or can enjoy a relaxing meal with friends, it is the perfect spot for any occasion. Mouthwatering dishes to try include the classic steak frites with pan roasted hanger steak, the roasted duck breast accompanied by caramelized apples, and the apple tarte tatin with vanilla ice cream and whipped crème frâiche. An extensive wine list is also available.
Founded by Chef Gabriel Rucker in Portland, Oregon, Le Pigeon specializes in creative French-inspired cuisine. Featuring an intimate, relaxing dining room, complete with communal wooden tables, the space also showcases an open kitchen, which can be viewed from the chef’s table. In order to highlight the best local and organic ingredients, the culinary team changes the menu frequently, but options may include grilled pigeon with sunflower seed pesto and the squash and mushroom wellington with sauce noix, pear, blue cheese, espelette and shiitake. In addition to the à la carte menu, this establishment also offers guests a dessert menu and five or seven-course chef’s tasting menus with optional wine pairings.
Filet of beef, garlic potato purée and red wine-shallot sauce | Courtesy of Mélisse
Founded in 1978 as a private dining room, Les Nomades was purchased in 1993 by Mary Beth Liccioni who stills owns it today, and was made public in 1996. Nestled inside a beautiful, elegant brownstone in Chicago, this upscale multi-award winning restaurant features contemporary French cuisine within an intimate space – perfect for a peaceful night out. The culinary team, headed by Chef Roland Liccioni, procures the finest ingredients available, some of which come from the chef’s own garden. Enticing options include seared Hudson Valley foie gras with strawberry balsamic reduction and caramel foam, as well as braised beef short rib accompanied by root vegetables, trumpet royale mushrooms and Bordelaise sauce. Luscious desserts and an award-winning wine list round out the selection.
Repeatedly named the best restaurant in Los Angeles by Zagat since 2003, Mélisse impresses guests time and time again with its contemporary French cuisine and impeccable service. Within a modern and stylish environment, guests can feast upon heavenly delicacies, such as lobster Bolognese with fresh capellini, basil and brown butter truffle broth, and Millbrook venison with endives, jujube, yams, chanterelle mushroom and sauce au poivre. They also offer a vegetarian tasting menu for those seeking something meat-free, as well as desserts and an extensive wine list.
Founded in 1994 in Yountville in Napa Valley, The French Laundry is a three-star Michelin recipient specializing in fine French cuisine within a charming setting – a historic two-story stone cottage built in 1900. The creation of acclaimed chef Thomas Keller, this fine-dining establishment is a definite must-try for any serious gastronome. Featuring two prix fixe menus each night — a nine-course chef’s tasting menu and nine-course vegetarian tasting menu — guests can sample delectable options that may include pacific sea bream with French green lentils, or the sweet potato ‘fondant’ with creamed garden kale, Pearson Farms pecans and black trumpet mushroom coulis.
Located inside the stunning Adolphus Hotel in Dallas, The French Room is a multi-award winning restaurant. A recipient of the AAA Five Diamond Award 25 years running, it is the epitome of French fine dining within the United States, and the executive chef, Marcos Segovia, has garnered praise from around the globe for his exquisite seasonal cuisine. Open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday, discerning diners can sample dishes from a three-course prix fixe menu or the chef’s tasting menu. Luscious dishes to note are the tenderloin of veal with lobster and veal cheek ragoût, and the Nova Scotia halibut with a macadamia nut crust accompanied by butternut squash-wild mushroom risottot. As with many of the other fine-dining establishments mentioned, male guests are required to don jackets.