My favorite places in New York usually have a stubborn quirkiness that lends to their magic. One such place is Buvette in the West Village. Here, the tables are too close together, the chairs not exactly comfortable (especially if you get a stool) the garden area hardly lush. Plus they don’t take reservations. But the charms are many: the small plates of classic French foods (pâté, steak tartare, cheeses, vegetables and chocolate mousse with massive dollop of the kind of whipped cream that is deliriously good) are delicious, the cocktails superb and elegant, and the atmosphere and mood both romantic and convivial. It’s the kind of place that makes you want to linger. And unlike most American restaurants, Buvette is typically French in that they are happy for you to stay, to savor, to talk, to flirt. I hope it never changes.