Cafe Cluny NYC Review, West Village

Cafe Cluny NYC Review, West Village


This Review of Cafe Cluny in NYC's West Village is from our first dinner out with friends in NYC, post COVID-19 vaccination. In NYC at time of writing, indoor dining is permitted at 75% capacity, although thanks to the summery weather, outdoor dining remains if anything, more popular with most diners. NYC Restaurants' Outdoor Dining has become permanent, lending a more European vibe to many streets.


Cafe Cluny Location and Hours

Cafe Cluny is located in New York City's West Village at 284 West 12th Street, at the corner of West 4th Street. A local favorite, it's open weekdays from 11am to 12 midnight, and on weekends 10am-midnight. Given its popularity, we highly recommend making a dinner or weekend brunch reservation in advance.


Cafe Cluny Dinner Menu

Cafe Cluny serves French bistro comfort food, from French onion soup and frisee and lardon salad to burgers, steak frites, roast chicken, and vegetarian selections.

Cafe Cluny NYC Menu: Sandwiches and Salads
Cafe Cluny NYC Dinner Menu
Cafe Cluny NYC Wine List
Cafe Cluny NYC Dessert Menu


Cafe Cluny Food

We started off with an appetizer of French Onion Soup. For restaurants that offer it, I use it as a litmus test of the kind of quality to expect for other menu items, similar to how a sushi aficionado might first order tamago at a sushi bar as a barometer of the sushi chef's skill. Fortunately, Cafe Cluny's version was classic, with a hearty broth, properly caramelized onions, and toasted bread generously topped with cheese before being baked in the oven. It was about 10X better than the sorry version we had at Bolero Brasserie Bermuda.

French Onion Soup, Cafe Cluny NYC Review


For my main, I ordered the Purple Sticky Rice Bowl, a vegetarian dish that comes with avocado, kale, shiitake mushrooms and broccoli rabe in a Sriracha broth, with an optional addition of a poached egg. It was a great combination, and not overly spicy for those who don't like too much spice. Since I like spicy food, I thought it could have used a bit more flavor, perhaps some roasted garlic or harissa, but the ingredients themselves were top-notch.

Purple Sticky Rice Bowl, Cafe Cluny NYC Review


My husband ordered the Cluny Burger, with cheddar cheese, choosing fries over the healthier salad option. It was a generous size, such that he barely finished it, and cooked exactly as he requested. The chipotle mayo was especially good with both the burger and the fries.

Cluny Burger, Cafe Cluny NYC Review 2021


We shared several desserts with our friends. My husband's ice cream sandwich was a grown up version of this favorite childhood treat, with homemade brownie-like cookies sandwiching the mint chocolate chip ice cream.

Ice Cream Sandwich, Cafe Cluny NYC Review


The profiteroles, our friends' favorite dessert here, were superb: crispy choux pastry shells cradling vanilla ice cream and crowned with rich chocolate sauce and toasted almonds. Excellent flavor and textural contrast.

Profiteroles, Cafe Cluny NYC Review


As good as the profiteroles were, in my view the Sticky Toffee Pudding tied with them. It's a dessert I don't see a whole lot outside of British restaurants, but one of my favorite desserts when done well. I do think that, given the sweetness of the toffee cake, either some creme fraiche or a less sweet type of ice cream such as Earl Grey or coffee would be a better accompaniment than regular whipped cream. The powdered sugar likewise, while a pretty topping, was superfluous.

Sticky Toffee Pudding Dessert, Cafe Cluny NYC Review


The Verdict

We can see why this is one of our friends' favorite date night restaurants in their neighborhood. There's nothing overly fussy or complicated, just satisfying, well prepared dishes, great service, and especially delicious desserts. Prices are fair given the high rent and labor costs of operating in a trendy Manhattan neighborhood. Recommended.

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