When I traveled to New York City last year with a friend, I wanted to find a restaurant that offered an appetizing prix fixe lunch menu, an inviting atmosphere, and a price that didn't break the bank. Oh, and I wanted this on a Saturday. 

When typing these keywords into Google, I wasn't very hopeful and figured that I was going to spend another day in the city eating pizza on a street corner. Surprisingly, I found a Michelin Guide restaurant that covered all the bases: Tocqueville.

Prix Fixe

Max Leo

The restaurant is located on 15th St. in Manhattan, just around the corner from the Union Station Greenmarket. This proximity is exhibited in their frequently changing, seasonal prix fixe menu. 

Lunch can be purchased as either two or three courses, with the choice of appetizer and entree, and a set dessert. Two courses cost $29 and three courses cost $36. A wine pairing can be added for $16. For being one of the best French restaurants in the city, this is a total steal. 


sweet, dairy product, mousse, cream, cake, chocolate
Max Leo

Before the menus were even brought to the table, a server in a tuxedo brought us this small bite of delight. It was a mushroom mousse served on top of a dense homemade cracker, topped with a small mushroom. The presentation was very nice and it made me excited for the upcoming meal. 


carrot, potato, sweet potato, pumpkin, squash, soup
Max Leo

I was rather confused when my order of butternut squash soup was brought out to me, sans soup. I was given a bowl with a tower of tofu, butternut squash, and purple spinach. Only seconds later, this tower was doused with steaming hot soup, poured in the most artful way possible. 

The soup was sweet and creamy, but remained pleasantly mild. The soup was seasoned well, and the tower of garnish combined well with the flavor of the soup. I was surprised at first, but this ended up being the best butternut squash soup I have ever had.  


foie gras
Max Leo

Once again, the presentation was much different that I would have expected. For the entree, I got roasted duck with mashed potatoes. I was expecting a pile of meat with a side of mashed potatoes and then a bit of greens. Instead, the meal was placed between two servings of mashed potatoes, and then topped with a demi glaze.

While unexpected, it was absolutely excellent. This was by far the best course I had while there. The duck had been cooked for a very long time and was then pulled apart. It became almost creamy and blended with the potatoes. The greens on top added an earthy taste and texture that truly elevated this dish to greatness.


egg yolk, sweet, chicken, egg
Max Leo

I had the choice between bon bons and sorbet and hesitantly went with the sorbet. I really don't think that the Chefs at Tocqueville could have done better with it, though. Picture above is pear, green apple, and mango sorbet. The sorbets incorporate only natural flavors and almost replicated the texture of the respective fruit.

The New York City food scene is incredibly intimidating, but is full of hidden gems. If you're in the Flatiron district and want an excellent lunch, Tocqueville should be your go-to (even on Saturdays!).