Downtown, that is.
Frederick's, purveyor of midtown and UES Eurohip, is back to bring lanky French girls, cigarette smoke and ratatouille to downtown.
Tucked a (critical) block or two away from the MPD, Frederick's Downtown is a sleek nook of a restaurant that's all about the scene...without the fanfare. Lime green seating and orange walls brighten up the chic bistro space (not a Lucite runway in sight), and the menu is thankfully just a return to classic French fare, with a Southeast bent—hence highly digestible items like Whole Roasted Dourade and Grilled Ribeye Steak.
Outdoor seating and a zinc bar up front set the mood for good conversation with strangers (ordering the Kir Tropezien for your lovely new encounters won't hurt either), who are likely to be fun and easy on the eyes, if the Lesort brothers have anything to do with it.
Hit up Frederick's if you're looking to be on—but not knee deep in—the scene, or if you want a relaxing meal before ramping up for the night's festivities just a few blocks away.
Or skip all that and just have another glass of wine.