Had tix to see Trumbo on Saturday night and struck out on pre-Theater reservation at Sibling Rivalry so opted to try for Aquitaine and scored a 5:30 reservation.
Arrived a little early and had to wait a few minutes to be seated (staff were eating dinner in the back) but no problem. Coats taken and seated in a small somewhat cramped space (this was expected however based on other reports so no problem). Our waitress scooted over with menus water, wine list and bread and told us about the specials. It took us a while to decide on dishes and then wine - waitress was very helpful and patient with a cheery disposition despite our taking a little longer to decide and the fact that the place fills up very quickly. She also asked us if we were pre-theater which was nice although we weren't pressed for time.
We split an endive salad with some cheese and nuts - it was fresh and as advertised but not memorable. I ordered the sea bass special and my date ordered chicken. ( I was tempted by the steak frittes and the lamb shank but ws trying to eat little lighter before the play). Also had a bottle of expensive but wonderful Oregon Pinot Noir which had us swooning (literally and figuratively).
The nice save involved the waitress rushing over before the entrees were served to advise that she had been told by the kitchen that a side dish with the sea bass was a risotto that included lobster and wantd to make sure there were no food allergies. Since I am (tragically) very allergic to lobster and shrimp I advised her and thanked her and suggested that I could order something else or they could put something else on the plate - I opted for swiss chard whch was terrific. Now I should have been more careful about checking ( I usually am) and would have avoided eating the dish on my own, so I was appreciative and impressed by the timely heads up during a very busy time.
The sea bass was excellent - not over cooked with a nice crust of skin on top. The substituted swiss chard and mashed potatoes (only ate few bites - carbs you know) were perfectly matched. My date loved her chicken although I thought it didn't compare to Hammersley's but helped her finish every last bit because I am such a good sport! Hers came with some terrific squash and nice looking roast potatoes. We split an apple tart for dessert and excellent french roast coffee and were on our way.
While the place is noisy and crowded, we had a great time and would go back. A great waiter/waitress makes a very big difference when dining I think.
Thanks to the many hounds who have written about Aquitaine.