French food is great for romantic date nights, family gatherings, and honestly any time you’re craving some flavorful comfort food — which is why many locals were disappointed when Madame Claude Bis closed in Jersey City this summer. When owners Alice Troietto and Mattias Gustafsson announced they’d be stepping away from the restaurant to retire as of July 14th of this year, it was revealed that the spot would reopen in the future under new ownership and with a bit of a rebranding. We now know that this restaurant, located at 390 4th Street in Jersey City, will be opening on November 23rd with a speakeasy component — and it will be operating under the name ‘Madame.’ Madame is co-owned by Jamie Knott, Robert Palmer, and Gabriel Rieben, who all also co-own tiki bar Cellar 335 in Jersey City. Since Madame and Cellar 335 are connected via a shared door, there’s talk of there being some collaborative parties + events between the two businesses. Read on to learn more about the opening of Madame in Jersey City.
^A sneak peek of the interior of Madame
(Photo credits: @madamejerseycity)
Alice Troietto and Mattias Gustafsson first opened their business (then called Madame Claude Cafe) in 2002 at 4th Street and Brunswick, per Jersey City Upfront. The BYOB French restaurant quickly became popular among locals for its welcoming atmosphere and great food.
Then, in 2016, the team decided to move locations and refresh the business as a whole. The restaurant moved to 390 Fourth Street, grew the menu, and added a full bar + wine list. The duo also changed the restaurant’s name from Madame Claude Cafe to Madame Claude Bis.
Of course, as with many local spots, Madame Claude Bis was hit hard during Covid and had to close. Though it was able to eventually reopen, as of July 14th, 2022, Alice and Mattias decided to retire and close down the restaurant — but luckily, they shared that this wouldn’t be the official end of the business. Though there weren’t many details at first, the team shared that new owners would be taking over and would reopen the spot sometime soon.
Rebranding to Madame: New Ownership
Though Madame Claude Bis is no more, it was announced that chef Jamie Knott — along with Robert Palmer and Gabriel Rieben — would be taking over the business after the former owners contacted them with the offer, per North Jersey. This team is also known for being the owners of Cellar 335, located at 335 Newark Avenue in JC — which actually shares a door with the French restaurant.
Jamie had been interested in Madame Claude Bis for a while and jumped at the opportunity to take it over. The new co-owners will be making some changes to this spot. For one, they’re changing up the name to just ‘Madame’ — and the current logo on the site features the words ‘Madame Claude’ with Claude crossed out, along with the description, ‘Modern Bistro + Cocktail Parlor.’ This is another change locals should expect — the overall ambiance and vibes. While Madame Claude Bis was known for its low-key coziness and warmth, Madame is aiming for a funkier, more modern bistro vibe (and even will have a speakeasy component).
Recently, the new business posted on Instagram for the first time sharing a look into the new space. Madame has since shared more sneak peeks on its Instagram of the food coming to the spot.
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As soon as Madame opens its doors, the spot will serve dinner from Wednesday through Saturday — and on Sunday nights, just the bar — called Panache — will be open.
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“The bar’s name derived from the word meaning ‘done with flair, flamboyance or style,” Tapinto reported. “To close out the weekend, Panache will be open for late happy hour and industry night, with a live DJ and entry by a password-at-the-door to bring through the speakeasy feel.”
What’s more, since Cellar 335 and Madame share a door, Jamie previously told North Jersey that he was planning to have shared parties once a month with two different DJs.
Customers are now able to book a reservation for Madame vis Resy. Stay in the know with all the details of this new spot via @thehobokengirl on Instagram and TikTok.