As promised, here are my thoughts on Dine in Brooklyn pick and French bistro, iCi. The tables are packed in like, for lack of a better overused phrase, sardines and a draft chilled the room periodically. If the food, service and ambience were any less hospitable and loving, these minor flaws would have possibly made a negative impact. As it was, the tight quarters felt very bustling and cozy and the draft was refreshing.
The place was so busy it really made me awed by the a difference great service can make. I'm sure we have all been to near empty places that have more staff than customers and you still can't get a refill of water or your check. Owner and reality television alum, Laurent Saillard, hires only the best it would seem, as these girls ran the tiny, crowded room like pros. The pre fixe meal was impressive and did not only offer the cheapest menu items.
Our skate with collard greens was simple and flavorful with enough garlic to make me happy. The carrot soup was also simple and appetizing and the desserts, a brioche bread pudding and a yogurt panna cotta, were excellent–although Jim remarked on the bread pudding, “If you told me to think of a dessert, that is not what I think of.” Maybe he's never had bread pudding before, maybe it was the Duvel talking, because I thought it was super.
Speaking of Duvel, the beer list is short but only full of the good stuff, like Danny DeVito if you ignore half of his career choices, it features a golden lager from Italy and an organic weiss. iCi is a well rounded restaurant that made a very favorable impression on everyone eating there. It can be pricey on non- pre fixe nights, so keep that in mind. Worth putting it at the top of your list come next Dine In Brooklyn week.