The New York City Restaurant Where Butter Is The Main Menu Attraction

Remember back when butter boards were a thing? Yes, this was a TikTok trend that many people, even Padma Lakshmi, were glad to see the end of. It seems, though, that one trendy New York City eatery called Quality Bistro actually has something akin to a butter board on its menu and is charging $28 for this dish. In fact, this very same butter board, er, "Butter Service Garni," has received rave reviews. 

This butter course, the midtown steak-centric brasserie says, was inspired by a Paris restaurant where the cheese cart comes with bread and butter in addition to les fromages. The butter used for Quality Bistro's offering isn't the ordinary supermarket kind, nor is it even imported from Ireland or France or anywhere else known for making extra-fancy butter. Instead, Quality Bistro makes the spread in-house with local-sourced cream infused with yogurt cultures. The yogurt gives the butter a certain tang, resulting in a flavor that Food and Wine's reviewer describes as "divine."

This butter service comes with a lot more than just butter

If you're still skeptical about spending $28 on bread and butter, a commodity that can be had for free at most restaurants, you may be somewhat reassured to know that for the price, you also get a selection of toppings including pepper (fresh ground, but of course), fleur de sel, and the Basque dried chiles known as pimente d'espelette. Not only that, but an array of nibbles are also included in the price, such as cornichons, radishes, quick-pickled leeks, vinegary mushroom duxelles, sliced ham, and hachée Basquaise, a concoction made from almonds, chorizo, honey, parmesan, raisins, sherry vinegar, and smoked paprika that sounds like the Basque answer to picadillo. The condiments and accompaniments were carefully chosen to balance and complement the creamy-tangy flavor of the butter.

Needless to say, this appetizer is one meant for sharing and is listed on the "For the Table," section of Quality Bistro's menu. Such shareables are said to be enough to serve two or three diners, but Food and Wine's reviewers noted that they had plenty of leftovers from their butter board. Quality Bistro does permit any of the uneaten food to be boxed up and taken to go, of course — after all, it knows which side its bread is buttered on.