Clam-chowder potpie. Photo: Courtesy of Marian’s

Here’s a refreshing little twist on the usual yarn that young chefs on the verge of opening their first restaurants conjure up with publicists: Christian Rowan, who unveils the French bistro Marian’s in the West Village tonight, claims he did not catch the cooking bug at the knee of his grandmother. Nor did he stand on a stool in Grandma’s kitchen at age 7 so he could reach the stove to stir the pot-au-feu. Even more shocking: Grandma kind of loathed cooking. Yet Rowan says he named his restaurant after her anyway because she was his biggest fan and told him to just do whatever the hell it was that made him happy, which was graduating from the Culinary Institute of America, then working in the kitchens of joints like Bouley, Le Bernardin, and Guy Savoy. Now he’s bringing all that excellent experience to a comfy, pillow-strewn space with Bob Gruen rock-star prints decorating the walls. On the menu: roasted miso-and-honey–brined chicken for two, mushroom cavatelli, seared scallops with melted leeks, apple-cider doughnuts, and a clam-chowder potpie (pictured above) just like Grandma never used to make.

Chocolate-hazelnut tart and spiced quince “Pop-Tart.” Photo: Courtesy of Marian’s

The dining room and bar at Marian’s. Photo: Courtesy of Marian’s

24 Greenwich Ave., nr. 10th St. 917-261-5814

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