12 December 2008

Chez Laurence Still Really, Really Closed


Chez Laurence, the throwback of a Murray Hill bistro that closed last April, remains as shuttered as a Roman palazzo. Super boarded-up. Can't see anything inside. No activity of any kind, and a nearby doorman knew of no new restaurant that was going to take up the space.

I miss this place. It was so much of another time. Another world, really. The French owners didn't give a fig for modern times. They did things in the slow, sometimes gracious, sometimes irritable way French bistros have always done things. They made their own pastries, which were pretty good, and took care with ordinary dishes like tuna salad. Plus old-school classics like cassoulet that you wouldn't expect from a place that basically looked like a tricked-out diner. Cuisine bourgeoise, as they say. The prices were fair and you could linger forever. No patron ever felt out of place or not good enough for the restaurant. Ah, me.

4 comments:

Carol Gardens said...

La Petite Auberge is still around, right? Now THAT one is old school. (Lex, high 20s.) They even make souffle! How old was Chez Laurance anyway?

Brooks of Sheffield said...

About 40 or 50 years.

Carol Gardens said...

Hey, I found this article online. It opened in the late 70s. I didn't know it was that old. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=990CE6DF1E39F936A35756C0A963958260&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

Brooks of Sheffield said...

My mistake, Carol. I spoke to the doorman of the hotel in which the restaurant was housed and he told me it had been there "forever, 40 or 50 years." He exaggerated, obviously. Still, charming place.