“Focused and refined” cooking sits behind a painting in a small art gallery in the West Village, the focus of Pete Wells’s two-star review today in the Times.
Frevo, the $124-per-person French tasting menu restaurant entered through a painting from chef Franco Sampogna and partner Bernardo Silva, delivers “pleasures” that linger, Wells finds:
I haven’t been able to get his halibut dish out of my mind, for instance. The fish rests on a thin, crisp platform of fried bread shellacked with a dark mushroom marmalade; this miniature mushroom tart drinks up the flavor of the halibut as it goes, in the oven, from raw to that just-cooked state where its flesh slides apart into thick and almost fluffy white flakes. Alongside the fish are bulbs of melted fennel, their spiced cooking juices boiled down to a bittersweet syrup.
Wells also enjoyed the rotating quinoa dish that opens the meal, whether it was spooned over hummus or dehydrated with black lentils and smoked trout roe, as well as peas with “rich” pistachio-tarragon cream and white puffs of coconut mousse.
The only hiccup seems to be “a snag in the otherwise smooth hospitality” via upcharge attempts. But he finds the vibes to be “slinky and sinuous” with a “nocturnal theatricality.” Two stars.