Monday, August 24, 2015
Le Marécage has apparently closed on 1st Avenue
The understated restaurant, which served an interesting mix of food from Haiti and the Ivory Coast, remained dark throughout the weekend here at 137 First Ave. just north of St. Mark's Place.
There's also a notice — dated Thursday — on the front window that the landlord has taken legal possession of the space…
Le Marécage, run by a husband-wife team (he was a longtime instructor at the French Culinary Institute), opened last October.
Not sure what happened here. The Times gave the place a glowing notice in its Hungry City column in March. Perhaps it couldn't compete with the other new, buzzier restaurants that opened nearby on First Avenue like Oiji or Noreetuh, which prompted reviews by Pete Wells at the Times.
Posted by Grieve at 4:22 AM
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the food was great, never seemed very full though. they really needed to open somewhere with much cheaper rents.
That's too bad, I wanted to go there -- it seemed classy, different, and special.
yes- someplace with much cheaper rents- like Omaha or Pittsburgh.
This is sad. There is absolutely NO reason for Le Marécage to not exist when (or if) there is a customer base with disposable income that can afford and justify the existences of Oiji and Noreetuh and every other nouveau upscale eatery popping up in the East Village/LES that are replacing formerly more casual dives.
They even got better customer reviews than those other two.
@Anon. 4:08, I think the very first sentence of the Voice review from last year holds a clue: "If you want to see the very opposite of the crisp, buzzy, intense restaurant opening that's become the norm in this town, you should head immediately to Le Marecage". If it's not "crisp, buzzy and intense", it doesn't stand a chance in the EV any more...
They were very nice people. I hope they find the right spot and didn't lose too much on this investment.
This was a nice place, and I'm sad to hear it closed. The owners were friendly and earnest, and the food was good. I wanted it to succeed and hope it can again.
But I'm not surprised. It needed a little more professionalism to make it. When I went this summer, it was sweltering inside, service was slow even though the rest of the place was empty, and the owner waited on us. She was nice, but quite opinionated about what we should order, a little hard to understand and communicate with, and not someone we felt comfortable asking many questions of. Plus, while I really enjoyed the live music, in such a tiny space it made conversation difficult. And the slope of the floor made the seating a bit awkward.
I hope they can reopen and when they do, they should hire waitstaff and ensure it's a comfortable space. It's nice having the owner present, especially when he or she is full of personality, but host is a better role than waiter.
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