L'atelier is a mediocre restaurant, and bad for its price. It's located in the Four Seasons hotel, and clearly tries hard to be contemporaneous and hip: overhead lights pieced together as squares whose sides are triangle-ended rectangular towers; large blackish gray plates with stripes down part of them; translucent red glasses; pickled vegetables swimming in large jars fronting an open kitchen. I sat at the counter, which looks right into the kitchen. I asked if they could accommodate vegetarians, and they pointed me to their single appetizer (a slow-roasted vegetable & buffalo mozzarella dish) and entree (spaghetti, parmesan, and poached egg w/optional black truffles). I asked if the chef could make anything different, and the answer came back no.
The bread basket was decent, consisting of baguettes, rolls, and olive focaccio. The baguette was a little too tough. The slow-roasted vegetable dish was well-made, though nothing special (though I liked the flavor of the tomato confit). The spaghetti dish was not particularly memorable. I'm certainly glad I didn't opt for black truffles, which would have upped the price of the dish from $35 to a somewhat absurd $160.
Service was fine, though the server did not seem to make much effort to even attempt to get me the special dish I requested nor was he particularly put-out when he couldn't. So mark one off for that.
Nothing to see here, folks. I won't be going back.
The Vegetarian New Yorker: http://vegny.blogspot.com/