October 6, 2003

Get to know NYC through the food
By Gabriella Gershenson, special for

New York is one of the world's great restaurant cities. But the endless variety of featured cuisines — Cuban/Asian, New York Deli, French Fusion, raw food — makes deciding where to eat a challenge. And with new eateries constantly popping up, the list of restaurants to try just keeps growing and growing. If you have difficulty narrowing it down, a great way to deem a restaurant worthy is by seeing how many people are dining there — a full house is quite the compliment. On the up side, with so many choices, a New Yorker never has to visit the same place twice.

Hot spots —

Late-night nosh —Around 4 a.m. on a weekend morning, the character of New York City's nightlife shows its true face at Restaurant Florent. The 24/7 French diner fills up with a cross-section of lively clubgoers not quite ready to let the evening end. Over standard bistro fare like moules frites (mussels and fries) or boudin noir (a blood sausage with apples and onions) and more traditional brunch items — French toast with bacon is the alcohol antidote — the party goes on. The food holds its own, but make no mistake: The fun is in the people watching. Florent is moderately priced — few entrées cost more than $16 — accepts reservations, and is also good for brunch. Cash only. 69 Gansevoort St. (between Greenwich and Washington streets); 212-989-5779;