The market-meets-restaurant concept is not a new one in New York City, and Marché du Sud isn't all that new either. A few years ago, this place opened up in the East Sixties aiming to be a "French version of Citarella," presumably without all the awful people shopping in it. The market portion of the restaurant sells a wide array of imported products that people from France and people that wish they were from France get nostalgic over, and there is also a bakery, a butcher, a wine bar, and a partially enclosed garden on site. Not to mention the restaurant itself, which specializes in Tarte Flambée - basically a French pizza for those of us that need our food explained in children's terms.
Even despite the fact that Marché du Sud sounds a little bit on paper like France Pavillion in Epcot Center, the food here is pretty damn good. We happen to really like those pizza things, and the restaurant also serves very well executed French classics that are simple and delicious. The bakery is a great spot for a croissant and some coffee, and there's even an unexpectedly excellent burger on the lunch and dinner menu. It's all a little bit strange, especially when you take into account that they play the absolute worst music you could ever imagine at remarkably high volume, but Marché du Sud is an underappreciated restaurant in this area. It's not something that you need to make a special trip for (save that for Epcot), but neighborhood-types take note. This place will surprise you.
A simple and excellent vegetable soup with pesto and beans. The vegetables in this are perfectly cooked, and this soup hits the spot.
Let us preface this by saying that sardines taste like sh*t to most people. If you love them, you will absolutely love these. If you are unsure, maybe eat something else. They're fishy as hell, like sardines should be, and are perfectly grilled next to some greens and fennel.
One of our favorites of the tarte flambée offerings, this one has crème frâiche, brie, pancetta, and white truffle honey drizzled on it. So yeah, it's healthy.
Another awesome tarte flambée, and this one comes out of left field. The base is hummus, and it's topped with harissa, merguez sausage, swiss cheese, lemon confit and cilantro. It's spicy. Order it.
A place like this better do a decent niçoise salad. This one's good, and will scratch the itch if that's what you're in the mood for.
An excellent mushroom risotto with duck confit. This will stick to your bones, but it's lighter than it sounds.
An eight ounce short rib burger topped with cheese fondue and a roasted tomato. Color me "le shocked", but this thing was awesome.