image via sauvageny.com

Last week, the owners of the James Beard award-winning cocktail bar Maison Premiere, Joshua Boissy and Krystof Zizka, opened their new restaurant opposite McCarren Park, Sauvage (on the corner of Lorimer Street & Nassau Avenue/Bedford Avenue). With this new project came a full kitchen allowing the restaurateurs to expand their menu offerings in the gorgeously renovated space. The interior evokes a French Art Nouveau cafe with many decor pieces supplied by local artisans and the food thoughtfully balances old and new sensibilities.

The Leek Terrine via Instagram

Chef Lisa Giffen, who is also head of the kitchen at Maison, has created a menu featuring a selection of raw bar offerings and vegetable dishes, moderately sized entrees, and options for serious meat lovers including the 52-day aged Tomahawk Steak (a bone on ribeye) and Pig Head Confit for two. Classic French cooking techniques anchor dishes, but innovative twists abound. For example, the Leek Terrine is not actually a terrine, but a deconstructed interpretation that is plated more like a savory tartine.

Or the old-school technique en cocotte lutée, used to seal the Vegetable Pot. While the simple dough that seals the top is a throw back, the dish caters to modern diners’ demands for flavorful vegetable-based meals. (Sorry, no pic of the dough. The food runner quickly removed the top tableside and took it back to the kitchen.)

We also tried the pike fish with mountain vegetables and sour beer sabayon, as well as the lobster, which is served with crushed potatoes and blood sauce. Both dishes were perfectly cooked, classic bistro-style plates. A great aspect of this type of menu it that it lends itself to sophisticated, interesting comfort cooking, where the presentation does not have to be overly fussy. Great food went hand in hand with great service – knowledgeable, polished, nicely paced and friendly.

The Slow Moon’s Rose via Instagram

Sauvage brings it on the beverage front as well. Customers expectations are undoubtedly high in that department thanks to Maison Premiere’s recent James Beard Outstanding Bar Program award. There is a short list of top-notch specialty drinks and classic suggestions as well. The Pastis Cobbler (Argala Pastis, Cherry, Quina, Chamomile) exemplifies the restaurateurs’ attention to detail with a generous mint sprig and silver straw. The cocktail looks right at home next to the birds of paradise spilling out of the vase on the bar.

The extensive wine list is mainly devoted to French cult-status producers. For serious wine drinkers: there are multiple cuvées by a single producer and some wines available in a selection of vintages. If you have a friend who’s a wine geek, bring them here. If all of that sounds a little intimidating, the server offered to send over a sommelier so you won’t have to navigate it alone.

Sauvage is another addition to the increasingly upscale dining scene in North Brooklyn. They are currently only serving dinner, but there is a coffee window featuring single origin brews and homemade pastries. There are plans to add breakfast, lunch and brunch service soon. Once the patio seating opens, this will definitely be a great place to eat and people-watch at one of the busiest spots in our neighborhood.

Sauvage‘s official address is 905 Lorimer Street, but the entrance is located on Nassau Avenue. They are open seven days a week, Sunday  Thursday, 5pm – 12am; Friday and Saturday, 5pm – 1am. Reservations are available via Opentable.

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