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The Early Word on West Village Newcomer Left Bank

New American neighborhood spot Left Bank opened on Perry and Greenwich Streets just under a month ago, and the locals been slowly warming to the place. The restaurant is simple, serving just a handful of entrees, a few pastas, classic apps, and a rotating list of specials, with a focus on the (of course) local, the sustainable, the carefully sourced. While some early responders don't think there's enough here to separate Left Bank from the competition, it has its share of new fans. Check out what the first responders are saying:

The Rave: City Unlisted is an early fan: "On the night I visited, wild striped bass came to the table with perfectly crispy skin, the hot fish sitting on a mound of cool, minted corn salsa. My tablemates went wild for the split chicken, and the pasta with mussels. For dessert, there were three choices: ice cream, affogato (ice cream doused with espresso) or maple syrup pie, which turned out to be an ideal composition of after-dinner elements: flaky crust, sweet filling and a dollop of creme fraiche." [City Unlisted]

The Good News: Yelp reviewer Tommy M. said his lady friend loved the striped sea bass: "'Summer in your mouth' as she described. Grilled on the top, crispy and moist on the inside. Her broth was delicious with mint leaves and some beans. The combo was refreshing, light and indeed summery." [Yelp]

The Not so Great News: Though mostly positive, Yelp reviewer Stratasphere F. found the chef's lack of salt curbed the appeal of what might have been more intense flavors. He said "I'd like to return here to sample some of the other offerings on the menu. But, hope the chef does get over his affinity for 'water color' food flavors and move towards a bit more intensity. It would then make the dining experience here much more memorable." [Yelp]

The Bad News News: New York Journal liked Left Bank but condemned a lack of focus on the menu, criticizing: "...there is a distressing lack of focus in that menu: lamb tartare, chicken, gnocchi, cheese. Not much that gets the pulse racing. It’s hard to imagine a signature dish emerging from the tepid offerings the restaurant has opened with. The wine list is as brief and as timid as the menu, with about a dozen uninteresting bottles." Maybe less is not always more. [NY Journal]

More Good News: Left Bank's Foursquare page includes a lot of positive tips including, "Highly recommend the crusty brandade, olives and toast appetizer. Not too salty and delicious. The calamerata with spicy cheery tomatoes and mussels is also just divine." Also, "I like the pork chop and the chicken. Also try the maple pie." [Foursquare]

[Photo via Blackbook]

Left Bank

117 Perry St., New York, NY

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