had a very nice pre-opera meal at Nougatine. I have heard complaints about the service but they were wonderful to us (we left before 8 when they were not that busy, which may have helped). And we were a difficult party as we started off with 3, a 4th came half an hour later, and the fifth came as 2 were leaving. The room is comfortable and we had a nice view of the Gates.
It was 6pm and nobody was very hungry so we each ordered 2 apps and split a couple of desserts. We also decided that we couldn't share foie gras so we ended up ordering 4 of them :). It was foie gras brulee- a small cake of brioche topped with a foie mousse, and bruleed with a sugar and pink peppercorn topping- amazing. Other dishes were a beet salad with nuts (I had a bite and didn't love the (i think) peanuts in this salad), a tuna tartar with avocado which was very flavorful and a crab cake. Then we had 2 desserts- a meyer lemon tart with ginger ice cream and an apple tart with salted caramel ice cream. Both were wonderful although I couldn't get my taste buds around the salt in the ice cream. The first bite had a large salt grain but my second was more balanced.
Both the front of house staff and our server were wonderful. The sommelier was unnecessarily condescending and then tried very hard to empty the bottle quickly so we would order another one. We finally had to tell him to stop pouring the wine. We ordered the wine before picking food and ended up with a really nice Chinon that was light enough to go with most of what we ordered, even if it wasn't an inspired pairing.
Other than the sommelier everything was wonderful. I would definitely recommend this as a pre-Lincoln center or pre-theater dinner option.