When restaurateur Keith McNally and co-chefs Riad Nasr and Lee Hanson opened Balthazar in 1997, it immediately became one of the hottest restaurants in the country. Famous for its star-studded clientele, a beautiful room in the chic SoHo neighborhood, and superbly executed food, Balthazar has been embraced by New Yorkers and visitors alike for its perfect evocation of a French brasserie.
The Balthazar Cookbook captures that energy, that style, and that cuisine, with recipes for the most-loved and most-accessible French dishes: seafood ranging from the ultra-simple Moules à la Marinière to more ambitious Bouillabaisse; chicken and game favorites that include Coq au Vin and Cassoulet; red-meat classics such as Braised Short Ribs and Blanquette de Veau; sides like the perfect French Fries or sublime Macaroni Gratin; and finales that include Crème Brûlée and Chocolate Pot de Crème. This is the best of French cooking, from one of the best-loved French restaurants in the country.
“The first thing I do whenever I plan a visit to New York is make a reservation at Balthazar; this is quite the best room in Manhattan.” —Nigella Lawson
“I went for breakfast; I stayed till supper.” —Bono
“The brandade. The bouillabaisse. The frites. These are a few of the things I would want to cook every week from Balthazar, were it not infinitely more cheerful to eat them on site.” —Joan Didion
“Keith McNally and his exceptional team have managed to consistently satisfy every American’s dream of spending an evening or lunch or even breakfast somewhere in Paris without ever leaving the U.S.A.” —Martha Stewart
“From the first moment, Balthazar felt like a place that had been part of the New York landscape for a hundred years.” —Anna Wintour
“The talent and spirit of chefs Lee Hanson and Riad Nasr are at the heart of this wonderful transported brasserie, which happens to be my favorite downtown restaurant.” —Daniel Boulud
“The enchanting atmosphere of Balthazar combined with the rightness of the food and service together create an extraordinary restaurant.” —Alice Waters
“If Balthazar did not exist, it would be necessary to invent it.” —Salman Rushdie
“Keith McNally is an old friend of mine and even I’m not treated that well.” -- Lorne Michaels
Keith McNally was born in London and moved to New York in 1975 where he worked in a series of restaurant jobs from oyster-shucker to busboy to general layabout. In 1980 he opened his first restaurant, The Odeon. Since then he has opened Cafe Luxembourg, Nell’s, Lucky Strike, Pravda, Balthazar, Pastis, Schiller’s, Morandi, Minetta Tavern, Pulinos’s as well as Balthazar in London. He’s also written and directed two feature films, End Of The Night and Far From Berlin. In 2010 he was mistakenly given the James Beard Award for Outstanding U.S. Restaurateur.