Recently, I had my friends Rob and Kath over for dinner. They live in our building and we were chatting about the neighborhood, our favorite places to eat and, inevitably, The New French came up. “You know it’s funny,” I said. “At first I didn’t love The New French, but recently I discovered their tuna sandwich and it’s seriously the best tuna sandwich of my life.”
“You didn’t just discover it,” said Rob.
“You blogged about it,” he insisted. “Last year.”
I challenged this notion right away. “Nu uh!” I insisted. “I wrote about The New French, but I hadn’t had their tuna yet.”
“Yes you did,” retorted Rob. “You were there with a food writer and you had the tuna. I remember it.”
I ran to my computer, eager to prove this foolish dinner guest wrong, but as soon as I loaded up the post–this post, Lunch with Regina Schrambling at The New French–I felt like the fool. Right there, from July 2008 (almost two years ago), was a picture of the tuna sandwich I ate and the following statement: “You have never had a tuna sandwich like this in your life.”
“See,” said Rob. “I remembered because when I read that, I went there myself to try it.”
That’s the problem with having an aging blog; like an aging person, it (and you) begin to grow a bit senile.
That said, in that last post I didn’t go so far as to say what I’m about to say now: the tuna sandwich at The New French is the best tuna sandwich in New York. It’s an outrageously good sandwich. Lets look closely, shall we:
The first thing to observe is the tuna itself. It does not come from a can, no no. The tuna is a real piece of tuna, cut into cubes, and cooked–I’m guessing here, but pretty sure–by slow poaching in oil. That’s the only method that explains its unctuousness; it’s the most unctuous tuna you will ever have. Then, as if that weren’t unctuous enough (how many times can I use the word “unctuous” in this paragraph?), it’s dressed in a rich lemon aioli.
But the real kicker is the bread: this isn’t normal bread. They call it pizza bianca and it’s crispy and pliant and flavorful like a focaccia. Along with all the other elements, it knocks this sandwich out of the stratosphere.
In conclusion, I may have grown redundant in my old age, but this sandwich is a sandwich worth seeking out. Plus, The New French is a charming space; bright during the day, with quirky hand-drawn art on the walls. Chances are if you go, you’ll see me there; if you don’t mind, will you help me cross the street when I’m done? I may need the help.
The New French
522 Hudson St. near 10th St.