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Everything posted by Nathan

  1. I really really wanted to check out Peninsula Grill...but alas, on NYE they were serving only an NYE tasting menu. Ditto for Charleston Grill. ended up at Magnolia's which was serving ala carte. Not food that I would eat every day but it was all quite tasty. really liked the place.
  2. Nathan


    I was looking forward to eating here on Tuesday night. Service was mostly very professional. The wine list is certainly solid. I was annoyed when our waiter launched (unprompted) into an explanation of what an amuse was. That's completely unnecessary at a restaurant at this caliber of ambition. Insulting really. The amuse itself was a mistake. Foie with truffle. Nothing wrong with that except that it was way too heavy to start the meal. Completely the wrong concept. Just showing off luxe ingredients. General Tso's Sweetbreads was the dish of the night. Nice idea. Perfectly executed. Tasty. Cauliflower soup was properly executed and inoffensive. squash ravioli were quite good. a grouper main showed off lots of technical cooking but had no flavor. a wagyu flatiron steak was quite similar to the WD-50 dish and didn't improve upon it.
  3. I was intrigued to read that this restaurant's culinary outlook was explicitly influenced by the Momofukus. One look at both the menu and hearing the (extensive) list of specials confirmed this. It's also very good. Cheery decor, completely full on Monday night (and the bar until late). the "head to tail" pork terrine was one of the best I've ever had. salt and pepper shrimp with jalapeno and cilantro was quite good. a scallop special was fine but a little boring. the coconut braised pork shank was Flintstonian in proportion and very good. there's some impressive cooking here.
  4. I will definitely have to keep Mas in mind next time I am in C'Ville. Do you know anything about the chef(s) or owner(s)? ← just what's here: http://www.mastapas.com/
  5. I'd like to get to Palladio...not sure when I'll be able to...finding a designated driver can be difficult. I will give Ivy Inn a look. as for C&O...to me this is a pretty standard restaurant menu: http://www.candorestaurant.com/popMenu.html (and I found the actual food to be of mixed quality in execution)
  6. after a couple months here are my thoughts. alas, Oxo has been closed for six months. Mas is the best restaurant in Charlottesville, by a large margin. excellent tapas. for the NY'ers, it's every bit the equal of Bocqueria...maybe a bit better, if not quite as interesting as Tia Pol. lots of places such as C&O, Zocalo, Cassis, Zinc, Si etc. that are serving standard restaurant food... there's no good Italian or Chinese. the Thai is better than expected. Mellow Mushroom has quite good pizza. I dig the beef and onion pancakes at the Tavern. Mas is very good...did i say that? some good beer lists. crappy wine lists (except for the small but good one at Mas). no good cocktails (except those made in my room). Mas is what elevates this place way above the norm for a town of 45,000.
  7. fwiw, I've noticed that many times when someone is actually suggesting that you can find decent food in Little Italy they're actually talking about NoLIta, not Little Italy per se. you can certainly eat just fine at Peasant or a number of other places that are in the historical Little Italy environs...
  8. I arrive at the JAG school this weekend and will be here for several months. looking for restaurant suggestions of all types (the best of casual, ethnic and higher-end), coffee shops and nightlife. TIA!
  9. Nathan

    Perry Street

    the tuna burger is good.
  10. more on my Saturday night meal at Corton: the room is beautiful....it's an exhibition in how to conduct a renovation. an oyster amuse was very very good...to be compared favorably with the terrific oyster I had at Yasuda the other week (those who have had it will know that's saying something). Rob's desserts are excellent. scallops were good but that squab is just first-rate.
  11. be careful with Insieme...even though the kitchen officially closes at 11...they shut it down at 10.
  12. at corton, it's very good if a little safe. Squab is a standout. Leave tomorrow. More details when I get the chance.
  13. although I've eaten in most of the NY starred restaurants, I've only eaten in a couple European three-stars (and not really any others). so I'm totally going to talk out of my hat here. since the Michelin guide first came out for NY I've been reading (and hearing) numerous people state that Michelin "dumbed down" their standards for NY in order to make sure NY had a enough highly rated restaurants. I've long suspected this argument was entirely off-base. here's why: cherrypicking. the primary problem with all discussions of this nature. when American foodies go to Europe they often engage in obsessive research of where to eat. by no means solely relying upon the Michelin guide, but certainly keeping it in mind. there are 26 three-stars in France. when it comes to travel accounts, I see the same 8-10 show up on everybody's list that they've visited. maybe those happen to be the 8-10 best of the 26? there's a reason why everyone is going to them. to compare NY you'd have to figure out what an average three star is like in France. i.e. not one of those 8-10. otherwise it's just cherrypicking.
  14. right. JG. don't do Nougatine. not the same thing at all.
  15. Nathan


    it's not. projected opening dates are always several months off. see the Corton or Ko threads if you don't believe me.
  16. So you're saying that you think they've been to Etats Unis, Del Posto, Jewel Bako, Aureole, Public and JoJo multiple times each in the last year and still found them all to be deserving of at least one star? If so, I think it speaks more to their wanting to cover for (or at least not admit to) past mistakes thank it does to their actual beliefs about those restaurants. ← yes, I think they've been to them. why they rated them as they did I don't know. I know someone who eats out a massive amount with an almost unlimited budget and she's been doing it in NYC for 20 years..and eats plenty internationally. she also thinks Aureole is the best restaurant in NY. obviously I think she's wrong..but just because it's self-evident to you or I doesn't mean that it is. individual taste is an enormous factor when rating restaurants. someone here in another conversation commented that we always agree on new restaurants when we eat at them at the same time but often have completely divergent conclusions when eating at them separately. the point being that our opinions are enormously influenced by others we know and what we may think of as a "consensus" might only be our own group.
  17. I don't get this. Michelin assesses restaurants by their own standard not by Japanese foodie conventions. It's a serious accusation to say they are lying about visiting restaurants. I think the real explanation is much simpler. It's a big world out there. Many times I've seen people write "wow, so and so wrote about such and such or described such and such; obviously they read chowhound or what have you." the reality is there are massive multiple foodie grapevines out there that are completely independent of the boards.
  18. Well, if it's better than the Times or Zagat, then it's the best we have. The worst you can say is that it could theoretically be better, but you're comparing it to an abstraction that does not exist. As I understand it, the inspectors don't write the text that you see in the book, and I agree this is a problem. ← right. the blurbs aren't necessarily the product of the inspectors. they're hired to issue ratings not as copy writers. I don't disagree that Michelin's fact checking is poor. but that says nothing about the visits. even Frank Bruni calls the chef after he's done visiting a restaurant precisely to check all these details before writing a review. even something as drastic as getting the identity of a chef wrong doesn't mean that the reviewer didn't visit the restaurant.
  19. Nope, says just about every expert on Japanese food on the planet, both here and there. Try to find a book on Japanese cuisine that DOESN'T say this. Arguing this point is kind of like arguing against the idea that the French like butter. ← right. but: a. that doesn't mean Michelin agrees. b. doesn't mean that they're part of this supposed "consensus" as to Japanese restaurants in NY. yes, Michelin is idiosyncratic (I mean, the Spotted Pig with a star but not Babbo? that's absurd). what I don't get is how you assume that because they differ with Egullet that therefore they're acting in bad faith.
  20. Nathan


    nifty new bar menu. mixture of items: fried cornichorns, ceviches, tasty ribs, marrow gribiche and a good burger.
  21. 1. examples of factual errors that evince non-visits? 2. "It is a cuisine based more on differences in ingredient quality and sourcing rather than more subjective measures such as technique, seasoning, etc, so relative quality is much easier to get a consensus on." says you. 3. by the way, I haven't read Chowhound in years, but I do know that Kyo Ya has been discussed in various other sources (including the mainstream press) (as well as word of mouth) since it opened. 4. although JB has fallen in the estimation of people here (and I trust their judgment)...it still gets plenty of favorable reviews from some hardcore sushi fans.
  22. I think they're completely wrong to demote Babbo and the Public inclusion only makes sense if they're somehow including the Monday Room....and I'll take the word of others that it's insane to include JB, but that still leaves a perfectly defensible list overall.
  23. look, you're calling them liars just because they disagree with you about Jewel Bako.
  24. Bullcrap. For non-starred restaurants they claim one visit by one inspector a year. I believe them. For the record, I wasn't suggesting anything like a conspiracy theory. Rather, I was suggesting that it's impossible for them to thoroughly visit all the restaurants that they claim to with the frequency that they claim is used for their reviews, so they simply aren't doing it. As a result, some of their reviews at the lower star levels are based on very old or less complete data. Kind of like writing a book report based on the Cliff Notes instead of actually reading the entire book. And by the way, they aren't eating at nearly the numbers you suggest. The average restaurant reviewer eats far fewer "work" meals than that, and apparently not all of their reviewers are full time. ←
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