Losing Jimmy’s Diner on Franklin & Calyer was a hard loss to take. It was definitely one of the underrated neighborhood spots and a great place for a casual meal. Thankfully, Jimmy’s closing wasn’t because of a landlord dispute or rent issues, it was simply time for a new look. Last month, Chez Ma Tante opened its doors and quickly became one of Greenpoint’s new favorite restaurants, as evidenced by the crowded dining room on a recent night.
Chef Aidan O’Neal, formerly of the Manhattan restaurant Café Altro Paradiso, helms the team behind Chez Ma Tante. The name is in homage to a famous hot-dog-and-French-fry spot in Montreal, where Chef Aidan lived before heading to the five boroughs. (He’s originally from Vancouver.) And though you might hear that Chez Ma Tante is a Quebecois or Canadian restaurant, it’s not serving up hearty poutine and the like. If anything, the food at Chez Ma Tante is very American, just slightly refined. Continue reading