Chez Josephine

4.4
4885 reviews
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$31 to $50
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French
The last of its kind near 42nd Street, Chez Josephine is a neighborhood gem founded in 1986 by Jean-Claude Baker as a tribute to legendary Josephine Baker. This Parisian bistro offers live piano music and a tantalizing menu in an intimate setting of red velvet walls, a cavalcade of chandeliers and a blue-tin ceiling. Guests receive a warm welcoming and are treated as family whether coming before a show, after the show, for a leisurely dinner in-between, or a drink at the zinc bar.

Chez Josephine draws a crowd unlike any other in New York as food critic Bryan Miller noted when he wrote: “The dining room is a confluence of the famous and the fashionable, the infamous and unsung – with every shade of skin on earth – and indeed you feel the magic of Chez Josephine.”
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
French, American
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Hours of operation
Open 7 days a week
DINNER: Tuesday - Saturday:, 4 p.m. - Midnight;
Sunday & Monday: 4 p.m. - 11 p.m.
LUNCH: Monday - Friday, Noon - 3 p.m.
WEEKEND BRUNCH: Saturday & Sunday: Noon - 3 p.m.
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Phone number
(212) 594-1925
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Payment options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Frank Diaz
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Cross street
Between 9th and 10th Aves.
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Parking details
Manhattan Plaza, 42nd Street and Dyer Avenue (between 9th and 10th Avenues),
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Public transit
1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R trains to Times Square-42nd Street, and A, C & E trains to Port Authority-42nd Street.
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Entertainment
Live piano music nightly and at Sunday Brunch.
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Specials

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Sun 4:00PM - 4:30PM 7:30PM - 10:00PM
Mon 7:30PM - 10:30PM
Tue 8:00PM - 10:30PM
Wed 8:30PM - 10:30PM
Thu 8:00PM - 10:30PM
Fri - Sat 9:00PM - 10:30PM

What 4885 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.5
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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1
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SJ
New York Area
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Thought the food was very good. The duck, escargots, Chinese ravioli, pumpkin soup & filet mignon were excellent. The halibut was a bit overdone & should have been tastier. Would have preferred more interesting choices on the desert menu - too much flan. The espresso was very good. The restaurant IS very noisy, but the BIGGEST problem is that it is OVERPRICED! Each entrée should have been at least $10 less, and the Halibut was overpriced by nearly $15. This item was suggested by the waiter. We were very surprised to see a charge of over $40 for this single item. As well, mashed potatoes & fries are not great complements to filet mignon. There should NOT be an EXTRA CHARGE for a very simple green vegetable substitute. The wine was so-so, but we only ordered by the glass. All in all, I think the food was very very good, but the restaurant was very noisy, and the entree items were very overpriced. I was aware of the menu when reservations were made. Suggestion: for $39 for a single entrée, there certainly should NOT be an additional charge if one wants to substitute very simple greens for French fries! PS. I enjoyed the piano 'jazz' music. Nice touch for celebrations & dates.

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KS
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Went for our anniversary the food is always and good salmon was excellent . They have a nice piano player in center , The waiter sent us a nice anniversary desert at end of dinner (without asking ) . I used OpenTable and they knew it was our anniversary , but I find many other do nothing when I check the box like birthday or anniversary . These folks at least read the reservation, take note , and I never had to say anything

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L
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Nice ambiance and service. Food was okay/good but the bread is like cardboard. No French bread at a French restaurant? Hadn't been here in a while and missed Jean-Claude.

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TS
Seattle
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best service! The food was wonderful and you can’t beat the atmosphere!

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b
New York Area
408 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had a very good dinner after seeing the play at Playwrights Horizons. We started with glasses of white theater wine, which are free if you have seen the show. For appetizers two of us had tuna tartare and one had onion soup. For a main course, one of us had escargot and the other two had trout meunière. Everything was delicious.

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FF
New York Area
14 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Great character. Really French. And FUN! Waiter was great. Window table great. Maitre d' great. GREAT!!!

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MW
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff went above and beyond to make my friends birthday dinner very special.

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KM
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Always have a wonderful meal here. They may not be warm and friendly, but service is efficient. I was here for my Birthday and nothing was done or said, which was a bummer. Had a matinee, so was not going to say anything (as it had been mentioned and noted in the reservation). Their prix fixe menu is well worth it. Started with Bloody Mary's - little to no alcohol, but tasty if you like horseradish. The onion tarte, lobster bisque and salmon starters were all delicious. All the entrees were very good as well. Dessert was fine and coffee or tea is included (you do have to ask-they are not forthcoming). Very nice menu and consistently good food and good value Yes it is touristy, but there are locals who still enjoy the value and convenience to the theatre.

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ML
New England
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 5

Unfortunately we had horrible service here. We were just treated like a number or a statistic. The waiter barely made eye contact and was not friendly at all. He would come up to our table without saying anything so we had to prompt him with, “ok we are ready to order now”. The food was subpar for the expensive pricing. They didn’t clear our appetizer plates before placing down our dinner. It was a strange experience given how established this restaurant is. Will not be going back here despite the cool decor and ambiance.

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M
Charleston
2 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

I chose Chez Josephine for a meal before going to a concert. My friend is very fond of French cuisine and I was hoping this would be the "real deal", with classic French food and perhaps even some wait staff who spoke French. I found the menu to be quite disappointing and the creativity level to be very poor indeed. The bread, which is such an important part of French culture was a cold, stale roll. Service was very friendly and the decor warm, but over-lit. I would not go back, certainly not for fine French dining.

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CT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 5

The food was uneven. We went for brunch. The appetizer and dessert was great. My friend had French Toast, which she said was very good. I had Eggs Benedict, which is usually fairly standard. It was the worst Eggs Benedict I ever had. The eggs were over-cooked and cold. The Hollandaise sauce was like glue. I left half of it on the plate. Service was terrible. The restaurant was only half full, but the service was so slow that we were there for 2 hours. We asked for coffee and tea. I had to wait 15 minutes for coffee and my friend never did get her tea.

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F
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We’ve been coming here for years and it never disappoints.

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NT
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this restaurant and so convenient for the theater! Service was great and food was delicious. Highly recommended.

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S
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

This was our first time having lunch at Chez Josephine. We had dined there on many occasions for dinner and were happy to see that they are now open for lunch. The four of us enjoyed our lunch but there are a few things that need to be ironed out. Service was cordial but very slow. Two people in our party ordered the crabcake sandwich; one had to be sent back because the crabcake was cold. The two other orders, liver and onions and Parisian omelette were very very good. Even though there are some things that needed improvement we will definitely be going back there for lunch and or dinner because we have been fans of this restaurant for many years .

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M
New York Area
111 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

This was our third or fourth visit to Chez Josephine and while the food and service were good to very good, they were having a less that great day today. Checking my hamburger I noticed a section had broken off and it was broken or cut across the entire burger as though it had been cracked a bit too much in order to check its temperature. (Though that's not the way its doneness should be checked.) This was never the case before and when asked, that was the explanation. Something was wrong with the person on the credit card machine or the machine itself because it took almost ten minutes to get my receipt.
As I said, this must have be a really bad day for the kitchen and front staff, one that has not happened before and one that I hope will not happen again, for their sake. A restaurant has only one chance to make an impression. If there were new people coming in yesterday, they won't be coming back. For those of us who always enjoyed a well presented meal by page and helpful people, we'll try again for sure.

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SC
New York Area
72 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Always enjoy it here. Very friendly vibe, excellent service, piano player. Interesting choices on menu. I ordered wild boar pate, venison & opera cake on the prix-fixe menu. All very good.







































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WC
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great ambiance...food terrific ...wonderful service.

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S
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Sunday brunch here on 09/30/18 prior to 3PM show. Offered a 3 course prix fix brunch menu. If the choices are not to your liking just order off the regular brunch menu. (Next time I will order off the regular menu) Very reasonable. Food good, service great. Love the piano!

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TS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were seated right next to the live piano. It was divine. It was also a birthday celebration and the piano player even played the birthday song for us as the desert was served.
The food was outstanding. Plus can be affordable too if you are on a budget - come on Sunday for their brunch and live music.
I would also like to give a praise to the decor. It really makes your eyes wonder. And the historical significance is not to be missed.

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RE
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

When open table changed reservation time. Special request did not seem to follow
Lovely gem

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a
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

service was slow and medeeeeiocr

calf liver was rubbery and unedible

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JP
Washington DC
56 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Great location for theatre food, but un-remarkable menu, inattentive waiters, and ask to be seated far away from the live pianist if you want to have a conversation while you eat. Not bad, but I won't eat here again.

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BS
Cleveland
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner pre-Broadway Play and had a very nice menu on a very busy Saturday Night. Service was good quality/taste was great. Noise was moderate but would definitely dine there again.

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OT
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

A favorite of ours when going to the theater. Food is always good

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L
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

I’ve always walked around this place and never went in until last Saturday. The food was really good; the place is bigger than it seems from outside. We went for brunch but we saw the big piano in the middle, so maybe for dinner they play it. The decor is kind of dark and old, but the food is so good that it really doesn’t matter. I would definitely go again.

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t
New York Area
58 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was excellent as usual. We both had the price fixe dinner and enjoyed it.

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T
New York Area
188 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Theater District go-to. Atmosphere, staff, drinks, food, music, people watching are always a pleasure!

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D
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2018
Overall 4food 2service 5ambience 5

I think the unique decor makes Chez Josephine fun and interesting. I think its clientele is mainly tourists and theater-goers. I had been there many years ago and thought the food was great, but was a little disappointed this time. The food was pretty bland including the French Onion soup, which for a French restaurant and someone who loves a good French Onion, was pretty disappointing. I think a little creativity with spices would be a great improvement. Service was excellent.

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L
Denver
8 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 3ambience 5

Very high quality at very affordable prices. Great atmosphere for gathering with friends!

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NM
Kansas City
3 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Quaint restaurant with piano music. Great French food.

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S
New York Area
73 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Service was terrible. Chicken came out uncooked. Beet salad was soggy

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BP
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Food delicious. Go before piano player starts. It's impossible to have a meaningful conversation with him Playing 😞

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KR
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My college graduation gift to my daughter was a weekend of Broadway theatre in NYC. Before seeing Chicago on Friday night, we enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Chez Josephine. The meal was exquisite and the service was perfect; attentive without being intrusive. Our weekend revolved around seeing Anastasia on Saturday evening and we chose our restaurants along the Parisian theme of the show. We were thrilled with our choice of Chez Josephine! The appetizers (crabcakes for her and seasonal watermelon salad with fresh mint and feta for myself) were creatively plated, appropriately portioned, and delicious. The entrees were exceptional. I chose the grilled chicken breast with black truffle sauce and will find myself craving that meal throughout the remainder of my days, I'm certain! My daughter chose the grilled Berkshire pork chop and was equally pleased. The mango-coco parfait glace was as scrumptious on the palate as it was to the eye. We enjoyed learning more about the theatrical history of Josephine Baker which was brought to life by the many colorful paintings of her that adorned the walls. The overall decor of the restaurant truly served to tantalize the senses in a manner that complimented the gustatory enjoyment of the evening. The live piano music was a lovely accompaniment to the meal and did not in any way impede our conversation, which was mostly just "mmm and ahhh" anyways! Thank you, Chez Josephine, for kicking off a wonderful celebratory mother-daughter weekend!

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CS
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Back here again for the beginning of the theatre season. Always a treat. Not only is the food excellent, but the presentation is beautiful and the service perfect. Portions are relatively large, so my friend and I shared appetizer, entree and dessert. Could not have been better in any way.

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s
New York Area
130 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 5

Love the atmosphere and the music both live and recorded but would not take the fried chicken again but mainly because I Have lost my taste for white chicken meat every copious serve so good value for moneybutvsweet potato fries were limp and greasy and the blueberry cornbread tasted like rubber
Would go back and have the late or something more French
Wine was a generous serve as well and reasonably priced

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j
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service coupled with great food. From the time we walked in the door, everyone was attentive and very accommodating. Will definitely return.

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v
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Charming, friendly with lots of atmosphere. Service is outstanding and has some outdoor dining.

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PD
New York Area
62 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

This long-running restaurant in the West 42 Street off-broadway theater district is a real treat. It's a classic French menu, with a reasonable choice of wines and a couple of outstanding dishes, most particularly the Lobster Cassoulet. Within minutes' walking distance of all of the "Theater row" theaters there's hardly a better location for pre-theater dining in the area. There's live piano music most nights.

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DR
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

I hadn't been to Chez Josephine since the owner, who was so much a part of the scene, passed away. I was happy to see that the spot is in great shape, looking lovely and swanky and yet still reasonably priced compared to other eateries in the area. My one quibble is it was so busy, our waiter wasn't very attentive, but it was because he was overwhelmed. If you're in a hurry because you're going to the theater, best to let them know in advance.

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GR
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We are from MA, so we don’t go as often as we would like because of the distance, however this is our second time dining there and if it was possible to improve on the first visit they DID. Unbelievable meal. Piano player and singer are incredibly talented. Staff very professional and food to die for. Even though we were late for our reservation, the graciously accommodated is. You will NOT be disappointed if you go. We eat all over the world and this rates among our best dining experiences.

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