It’s Sara Aufgang, thrilled to be guest blogging again for Hudson Valley Restaurant Week. A friend and I visited Alain’s Bistro in Nyack on a recent Thursday evening. After hearing great things about this restaurant, we were excited to try it.
Although Alain’s is situated in a strip mall, it is easy to forget that fact once you enter the warm and elegant restaurant. Once inside, were greeted by the charming Alain, the restaurant’s chef and owner, who chatted with us and showed us to our table.
My friend and I enjoyed the bread basket, full of soft and fresh bread.
Our waiter then brought over a beautiful bite for each of us, called a chickpea panisse, with aoili and fresh herbs. The panisse was fried but not greasy at all. It was simply delicious.
For my appetizer, I ordered the Soupe a l’oignons gratinee (French onion soup), and my friend chose the Picodon de chevre (warm goat cheese on toast and jardinette salad). The other appetizer options were Feuillette d’escargot au pernod (escargot in a puff pastry with garlic butter sauce) or Le pate du pere Daniel (country pate with traditional quince paste and cornichon).
The soup really hit the spot. The melted cheese on top had the perfect amount of caramelization. The soup underneath was full of soft onion pieces in a tasty broth.
My friend enjoyed her appetizer as well. She said that the salad was perfectly dressed, and the components complimented each other well.
The entrée choices at Alain’s included Moules Mariniere (white wine, shallots, garlic, thyme, parsley, heavy cream and French fries), Julia Child Beef Bourguignon (slow cooked beef with root vegetables, red wine sauce and egg noodles), and Omble chevalier aux epinards (sautéed arctic char, spinach, mushroom mashed potato, beurre blanc sauce). I chose the beef and my friend requested a vegetarian option.
I loved my beef bourguignon – comfort food at its absolute best. Every part of it was fantastic, from the tender meat to the homemade egg noodles.
Initially, my friend was concerned that the plate of vegetables placed in front of her, although lovely to look at, would not be filling enough as an entree. But by the time she was done, she remarked that her entrée was enjoyable and satisfying.
For dessert, our choices were Crème caramel a l’orange (orange caramel custard), Tarte Tatin (apple tatin crème fraiche), Chocolat fondant (chocolate lava cake vanilla ice cream), or Fraise Melba (vanilla ice cream, strawberries and whipped cream). We shared the Tarte Tatin and the chocolate cake.
The chocolate dessert was outstanding. It was rich but not overwhelming, accompanied by an excellent scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Dining at Alain’s was a pleasure. It exceeded my expectations, and I look forward to eating there again soon.