Carroll Gardens' fried chicken-friendly Buttermilk Channel gains a new sibling when French Louie makes its grand debut this evening in Boerum Hill. The restaurant name-checks hunter/trapper and hermit Louis Seymour, who became a kind of Canadian folk hero. The name also drops hints about chef Ryan Angulo's cuisine, which includes a French-American base with flair from two of North America's other French-leaning cities: Montreal and New Orleans.
Francophile fare like Steak Tartare ($14), Radishes with butter and black olive salt ($4) and Steak Frites ($20 - $36) of several varieties bolster the menu's classical roots. Snails "Marchand de Vin" ($14) bring in some southern sensibilities with house-cured bacon and grits; as does the on trend Pan-Fried Skate ($23), served with crab "dirty rice" and a creamy crab bisque. The fun Mussels en Papillote ($12) deserves an order, as does the simple but compelling Salt-Baked Chicken ($22) with bread salad in a spicy sauce.
Co-owner Doug Crowell and team echoed Buttermilk Channel's simple, clean decor in the new venture. Dark woods and banquettes add depth to the milky white walls and simple fixtures. The cute log cabin wall graphics—another nod to our hermetic friend—add a touch of whimsey to the otherwise unadorned dining area. Bey and J would approve.
320 Atlantic Ave between Hoyt and Smith Streets, 718-935-1200