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Everything posted by indiagirl

  1. No, I think it's an interesting thread. I just don't know anything about Chicago dining and so cannot comment on LEY. Besides the fact that it is a clever name! However, a more general discussion of the idea of "restaurant companies" would indeed be an interesting thread, as mentioned above.
  2. just want to clarify, this is not a problem or a behavior trait adopted by ex-British colonies.
  3. guajolote, that was indeed one hell of a sandwich. many thanks. plotnicki, the blue cheese was not too much. it was perfect i would post a detailed review of the experience but haven't figured out where to do it yet. i'm sure the info is somewhere on the site. i don't want to start a thread because i'm not sure it can engender a discussion .... this diversion brought to you by blimpy burgers, ann arbor. and now back t the regularly scheduled puritanism.
  4. FG, to point 1 - I agree it's not practically possible - hence my suggestion about adressing the most popular meal/meal of restaurant's choice. But I agree that dinner is typically the most "complex" food event and would allow for the most multi-faceted review. Moving on to the far more interesting point you made quoted above. Living in a Midwestern small town where all the restaurant reviews in our local rag fall in the range of sublime restaurant vs. mediocre restaurant but here is what is praiseworthy about it, since the average sensitive reviewer just cannot be all out negative about something, I find myself lacking in experience in the area of comparative criticism. What is the eGullet opinion regarding explanations for clustered, unified reviews? Do you think that they stem from the fact that: a. restaurants are, indeed, consistent b. restaurant reviewers suffer from insecurity-Emperor's new clothes- socio political issues like everyone else
  5. i want these! they sound wonderful.
  6. Rating a restaurant based purely on a single meal, at a single time of day, seems unfair unless the reviewer clearly indicates what the review is based on, single meal, dinner only. Or as FG said, a report, not a review And yes, I agree that that is what consumers do everyday. But reviewing is not the consumers profession, is it? In fact, the function of a restaurant review is to arm the consumers with information which increases their probability of enjoying a meal out. Also, FG, you use the phrase "wrong" - I don't think it is wrong to base an opinion of the restaurant on a single meal, it's unsound. And if not clearly indicated in the review, unfair. Possibly the most typical occurence under the practical constraints you mentioned, but I would like to hear opinions about whether the following two are practically possible and would make reviews better: -find out which meal the restaurant is popular/most crowded for -ask the restaurant what they consider their "signature" meal About the theater analogy, I think it is not an apt analogy - because repeat performances of theater are designed to be alike. Whereas breaskfast and dinner are supposed to be different experiences, different cooking styles etc. Repeat visits to a restaurant also allow discovery of aberrations such as significant drop in food quality when chef is absent or excellent lamb, mediocre chicken type trends even if one sticks to dinnerl.
  7. i agree. rating a restaurant based purely on a single meal, at a single time of day, seems unfair. possible alternatives, if a reviewer is on a single meal budget: -find out which meal the restaurant is popular/most crowded for -ask the restaurant what they consider their "signature" meal in an ideal world, i think reviews should also be based on multiple visits. to me, this is of importance so that the reviewer can sample a larger percentage of the menu. i think it is more reasonable to can a restuarant for service or cold food based on a single visit.
  8. how about ginger? does ginger work in mayo? hmmm, i'm going to have to try that. hmmmm, the more i think about it, perhaps not. dill. what about fresh dill?
  9. in search of balance, i found this: http://www.tibet.ca/wtnarchive/2000/4/9_3.html extract from review, link provided above: what do we know?
  10. details of the birthday cake request this site, these meals, have stayed with me for a disturbingly long time. i revisited the site when i started this thread and two names had been added since my first visit. i make up stories about the lives hidden behind these meals. it's macabre, bizzare i know. i find myself wondering about these men (most of them are). was that his kids birthday? had he promised her (?) a birthday cake with pink candles and found himself in prison, unable to? i find myself judging them based on their meals. that is truly bizzare. can a murderer really be vegetarian? how many are really murderers? yes, i know, no politics on eGullet. if you knew you were going to die, would you really be able to eat this: in more ways than i had ever imagined, we live in a strange world. perhaps my last meal: savarin laced with cyanide.
  11. using jinmyo's definition of gadgets - "time saving", usually plugged in ..... most regularly: waring blender less regularly: spice grinder, stand mixer almost never: electric citrus juicer. looks like the traditional thing but plug it in and it turns and you can just hold the orange still. no really, it was a gift!
  12. yeah me too. and it wasnt even his birth date, right?
  13. torakris, a slightly more detailed description of yuke, please? i could always google it but that is never the same as getting a food description from an eGullet member
  14. sigh so many possible signature lines, so little time
  15. awrighty then. i've never been to blimpy's (the burger bit does not do much for the mostly vegetarian me) but this weekend i will be there. ultimate cheese, if you please.
  16. Lovely, Craig. It reminds me of a moment like that - We were in Rajasthan. Bumpy road. Terrible truck. Sore rattled bones. Driving across the state. Five of us. Really close friends. We asked the driver to take us to a good place for lunch and he took us to the Indian equivalent of a truck stop. Rope beds to sit on. Fresh, hearty, spectacular food. Mustard greens from fields we could see behind us. Sun. Laughter. Piping hot rotis. Camraderie like I have never felt before. With the entire world.
  17. Jinmyo, Craig, LOL. Although, I would add to yours Craig - And sign a declaration claiming it is the best cuisine in the world. Suvir, I started this thread with the idea of discussing what you would look for in your final meal - that ulitmate, in more senses than one, expression of yourself through food. Nostalgia? Luxury? And just to get people's reactions on the website. Which I cannot get over. I keep wondering - what's the message? Why show the final meals before the crimes? Is there a point to that?
  18. LOVE Zingerman's - but I count them as a deli. They plan to open a full scale restaurant - Zingerman's Roadhouse - traditional American food. Can't wait. Perhaps I can taste my first burger there? Sneak preview at menu: Chesapeake Bay crab cakes New Orleans gumbo Grilled Carolina grits Amish chicken and dumplings Plank roasted Alaskan salmon Steaks and chops from Niman Ranch, Marin county Six varieties of Mac n cheese including one with Maytag Blue Cheese, walnuts and grilled cherry tomatoes A bunch of barbecue stuff from an open smoke pit Perhaps you could try it when you're here SP? Love Annam's - one of the good places I had thought of when I made my post. Have not tried Emily's or Lark's but when I do, I will report back to you.
  19. A million apologies. I was not such a devoted eGulleteer then. In any case, i don't think I could have gone much past the gaggy feeling.
  20. India Girl - It warmed my heart to read this. Actually what did you eat, blood sausage? Tell me though, and let's be honest, how good is the food out in AA? What are the chances of finding good Transylvanian food? Or Carpathian food? Or how about the really hard question, can you find good TV or CP food in TV and CP? Steve, dahling, don't rub it in so. I ate some potato concoction with overcooked greens. yech. Food in Ann Arbor is mediocre at best, frequently blahh. Eating out is something I do when I don't feel like cooking for droves of people. Couple of good places within a 50-60 mile radius that I know of. No French food at all. And the revieweres gush over almost every restaurant that is reviewed in our local rags. I'm thinking of applying to be their "Open your eyes - there is better food in the world" editor. And this with my limited gastronomic experiences. :) Don't know what the chances are of eating good Carpathian food. Or Transylvanian food. Really don't. If you're looking for judgement in my response - Transylvania is not top on my list of places to visit to find out about their food. Sorry, best I can do. :)
  21. I just went to the web to see if I could find a menu to post and found out that the restaurant has closed. There is justice in the world. The menu, if I can recall it, seemed pretty Hungarian, but then I've never eaten Hungarian food either.
  22. I did indeed. A lot of Dracula jokes over lunch, of course. Especially since everyone agreed it was bad. Didn't compare to fresh blood ....
  23. FG, I tried to answer your question earlier but I guess I was rather oblique. As someone who does not ever write about food for a living, let me tell you how I judge it. Or parse it. The lay person's POV, so to speak. Basically it is the taste. Does it taste good to me?. When I have made some decision on that, I try to figure out why. And this applies largely to cuisines/ingredients I have tasted for the the first time and cuisines/ingredients I have tasted before. And I'll pick both the negative and the positive to enumerate. The points are not made in any particular order. I like it. I appreciate the skill with which it is made. It's spicy, I'm Indian, I'm drawn to spicy food. It's a new way of doing something. I never tasted green beans prepared like that. I like the combination or order of tastes in my mouth. They work well with each other. I like the texture. I could go on, but what it comes down to is a bunch of entirely rational criteria within which my judgements are entirely subjective. I do not like it. It's a new, unfamiliar taste or texture. Exampe: I do not like gelatinous stuff. It's bland. It's a new way of doing something and I don't like it. I do not like the combination of flavors/textures. Again, I could go on, but what it comes down to is a bunch of entirely rational criteria within which my judgements are entirely subjective. While I find my working model here entirely functional (you may disagree) in my personal life, I do not think it is appropriate for food journalism. As somebody who is interested in food, I go a little further: If there are so many people who appreciate this taste, what is it that I am missing? I don't force myself to like something based on popularity but it certainly enhances my understanding of it. Perhaps I do not like something because my upbringing did not introduce me to it. Such as seaweed. Fermented cabbage. Then I try to taste it several times before I decide it is not for me. Perhaps, it is an ingredient that I am familiar with and I do not like the way it was prepared. I'm less inclined to return in those situations. Perhaps, a dish has potential but I am suffering from a bad instance of it. This judgement can be limited by my culinary imagination and information. In those cases I try to learn a little and then I try to return to it. If I like other dishes from this cuisine, why do I not like this one? Or why does this particular cuisine never satisfy me? Perhaps because I do not understand the context in which it is consumed in that cuisine. For example, mezze are appetizers but many Middle Eastern cafes serve mezze as entrees. If I did not understand that I would perhaps not appreciate the taste because I am expecting entree like satisfaction and not getting it. If I have repeated instances of bad food from a particular cuisine, I try to understand the context in which it is sold where I am eating it. Chinese food in India is entirely different from Chinese food in the Midwest. Or I certainly would not want people to make judgements about all of Indian cuisine solely from eating it in the US. And if from reading this, you think I am not capable of judging food, that would be in inaccurate conclusion. There are restaurant where I live that suck for a variety of reasons and I never go there. I recently tried Transylvanian food in a new restaurant here and my lunch sucked. I tempered my conclusions about the entire cuisine with the following facts: -that I ordered a vegetarian side for lunch and a reasonably educated guess tells me that is not what is being showcased -most of the entrees came with F-Fries -it was the first time I had eaten T-food and I knew nothing about it When I read a review about a restaurant or an article about a cuisine, to be able to truly appreciate it and learn from it, I want to have some information about how the reviewer fits in the context of my thought processes described above. Even when it is all positive. So to me, the ideal way to approach a new cuisine is: - to understand some of where it comes from and how it is eaten in it's native state - to have an experienced guru with me who will function as a guide to what to order and whether the particular instance is good Failing that, I will temper my judgements with whatever knowledge I can gain and make sure that if I am writing an article about it, I provide full disclosure. Such as: Hi. My name is Steve Plotnicki. I think French cuisine is the best cuisine in the world. I judge cuisine and taste as independent things. I am not averse to being uber opinionated and not shy about communicating it. I believe the world would be a better place if we all agreed that there is a hierarchy of cuisines and identified what that was. The other day, I went to a Dutch restaurant ...... :) edited for clarity and grammar
  24. This weeks seemed to be almost entirely taken over by Mark Bittman. Ok, slight exaggeration there. I just thought it was strange to have two articles by the same person in a supplement and then I could not figure out why I felt that way .... The wine piece just seemed like an adjunct to the effects of the war piece.
  25. Not much lobster experience but your thread made me wonder - ever cooked lobster with an imli (tamarind) sauce?
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