This lively downtown bistro is the kind of authentic French restaurant that you can take children to (mais oui!) and please them with burgers and fries or pasta with butter while you relish in Frenchy delights: escargot, foie gras terrine, frisee salad with a warm bacon vinaigrette, duck leg confit. Carafe is a crowd-pleaser with lunch and dinner menus that overlap considerably. The classic Croque Monsieur sandwich, sharp and cheesy with Gruyère and ham, is a constant, as is the housemade lamb sausage. The real deal is chef Pascal Sauton's ever-changing three-course prix fixe menu at $20. (LC)