REVIEW #37

Mas (farmhouse)

Mas is one of the most dependably outstanding restaurants in the city, a perfect blend of sophistication and rusticity.  It serves locally grown and seasonal New American cuisine that is deeply indebted to classic French recipes and technique. Tastefully appointed, the modest dining room is surprisingly contemporary for a restaurant whose name means “farmhouse” in Provençal. There are vestiges of this conception scattered here and there – slats of antique barn wood and stone, tree stump stools at the bar, a wine list heavily weighted toward Provence, Laungedoc and the Rhone valley – but this is essentially a thoroughly modern restaurant.

Chef Galen Zamarra is a Bouley-trained devotee of the farm-to-table movement who has tried to transpose the Provencal concept of a mas – a small farmhouse where all the products necessary for nourishment are grown onsite – to the larger canvas of Manhattan by sourcing from farms in the immediately surrounding countryside. The result is strikingly fresh produce and a little self-satisfaction to be had if you are of the socially-conscious sort.

Though it is relatively casual, dinners at Mas are accented with a number of the accoutrements normally reserved for higher-end establishments – elegant china and stemware, polished service and a serious wine and cheese selection. The tasting menu, which lets diners casually graze off the recommended courses to select dishes from other parts of the menu as well, is one of the best values in NYC dining.  To everyone’s everlasting relief, the restaurant is finally on OpenTable.

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INFORMATION

West Village
39 Downing St.
New York (nr. Bedford St.)
212-255-1790
Mon-Sun, 6pm-11:30pm
    Galen Zamarra, Chef
    Eric Blinderman, Co-Owner
    Maritza Aranda, Pastry Chef

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