Every once in a while, I feel the need to commune with girlfriends at lunch for a gossip and a gorge. These all too infrequent meetings require a restaurant serving food that will pass muster with dieters and chowhounds alike. There must be a wine list that offers a red silky enough to render the occasion memorable, and the room must be comfortable and welcoming. Finally, the place must be fancy enough to show we've made it in the big city. The choice is not as simple as it seems. Del Frisco's masters-of-the-universe decor exudes too much testosterone, and the tinkle of champagne flutes and the hum of mondaine conversation in the floral bower of La Grenouille is a little too chichi for even my friends. Thank goodness I've recently discovered the theater-district standby Le Madeline. It is... More >>>
By photo: Tara Engberg
Feminine without frills, La Madelines garden is a real-life chat room.