Park Slope didn’t really need another French restaurant, most locals agree. But there’s always room for one as good as AOC Bistro. Opened over the summer by the owners of AOC in Manhattan, it delivers “very enjoyable French comfort food in a relaxed, friendly setting at affordable prices,” sums up elecsheep9.

Bistro standards—onion soup, charcuterie, escargots with garlic, duck confit (with Grand Marnier sauce and a tasty cauliflower gratin)—hit the mark. Other standouts are herring with new potatoes, bisquelike mussel and saffron soup, phyllo-wrapped seafood in saffron cream sauce, flank steak with potato gratin, and an excellent tarte Tatin. For brunch, hounds recommend French toast as well as ham and cheese baked in phyllo.

famdoc ranks AOC a cut above local competitors Moutarde and Belleville and on a par with Cocotte on a good night.

Not everyone is won over. slslaughter reports a disappointing dinner marred by oversalted coq au vin, a run-of-the-mill cheese plate, lamb shank that sorely needed a sauce, and an overgrowth of parsley on every plate, straight from “the Marriott school of garnishes.”

Ten blocks north, there’s yet another bistro: Canaille, which opened in October in the space once occupied by Red Café. Early word is scant yet promising. dah reports a fine post-Thanksgiving dinner highlighted by tender steak frites and a splendid pot de crème. A salad of arugula, beets, and lardons is peppery and fresh, and lamb chops (with sautéed new potatoes and haricots verts) are tender and flavorful, says cbking, who calls the newcomer “a lovely addition to 5th Ave.”

AOC Bistro (formerly Mekong) [Park Slope]
259 Fifth Avenue (at Garfield Place), Brooklyn
718-788-1515

Canaille (formerly Red Café) [Park Slope]
78 Fifth Avenue (near St. Marks Place), Brooklyn
718-789-8899

Board Links: A.O.C. Bistro–just plain bad…
New to Fifth Ave.: AOC Bistro
AOC Bistro (Fifth Ave) Brunch Report
AOC Bistro: My review
Canaille on 5th Ave, Park Slope

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