Well, not the best review in today's New York Magazine, to say the least (something about the whole restaurant being "lost in translation"). Went Saturday night with the in-laws, party of 7, and sat in the "bateau" (as the maitre'd called it) in the middle of the room. Together with the ticket-shaped menus and train-compartment bathrooms, the travel motif was well-established.
Unfortunately, just like an earlier poster, the father-in-law had eaten at Atelier the night before. Mix did not fare well in comparison, especially in the value category. In fact, he pronounced Atelier one of the best bargains in town, given the quality of the food and the wine list (FWIW, he's a wine importer and thought that Mix's list was a bit overpriced, although he was intrigued by the number of organic wines on it).
The Times seemed to have a typo when they listed the prix fixe prices: the three-course option is still $72, as previously noted. There was also a $48 option (essentially three appetizers, one from each of the salad, soup and Must de Mix categories, the last being "heavier" dishes such as mac and cheese). I did not see an appetizer + dessert only option.
Starters: my pastrami on pickle-filled mashed potatoes completely filled me up for the rest of the meal. Homey and satisfying with a strong sauerkraut vibe (rosemary? dill?). Sister loved the clam chowder (more bisque than chowda), grilled shrimp on eggplant, and truffle mac (didn't see much ham and the truffles must have walked on by rather than settled in the dish)(she had the $48 option). The bouillabaise also got praise (excellent stock) as did the duck ham and chorizo.
Mains: mother-in-law finished her chicken pot pie, father-in-law finished his L-bone steak ("nice and pink" was the comment), I liked the "barbequed" pork a lot (complete with biscuit). Lobster dish a bit overwhelmed by the sauce.
Desserts: consensus best was the "heart of chocolate," which wasn't mentioned in either the Times or New York. Pot de creme very heavily jasmine flavored. Compote of autumn fruits with cheesecake ice cream difficult to eat (comes in the same type of "deep petri dish" many of the other courses do) and nothing special. Chocolate pizza made a nice impression (not as big a hit as the "heart of chocolate," tho) and the profiteroles were competent.
Service: top-notch, once you get past the friendly-goofy Asian maitre'd who was described below. Very accomodating staff even checked a balloon (don't ask) for us. Father-in-law grilled the sommelier (Japanese woman) who only came up short once (name of importer of a certain organic wine).
Bottom-line: satisfying comfort food at uncomfortable prices. A lot of fun, with an easy-going yet professional staff. But, not on my dime, buddy!