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R Washburn

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Everything posted by R Washburn

  1. I agree about Secession. Was Danube losing money? I don't see why he closed it otherwise. Hopefully, he is putting his all into Bouley, and it will be really good. I just hope he doesn't have the finances of all his restaurants so closely linked that one failing brings them all down. I saw that happen in Philadelphia with Neil Stein. He lost two good restaurants (Striped Bass and Rouge) when Avenue B failed.
  2. Try using this site: http://www.hopstop.com/?city=newyork
  3. HK is on a major network. TC is basic cable, so it must have a much smaller budget.
  4. I ordered the same items and had a similar impression, except that my onion soup was one of the worst examples I have had in recent memory. I would guess that it was made from unseasoned canned broth. I can't name a superior example of a $27 steak au poivre off of the top of my head, but I have had much better steaks at that price point at Balthazar and B. Cafe. I also think DB's $29 steak was also much better. I will definitely be returning some day, but I will be using more care in choosing my dishes.
  5. Maybe because DB Bistro Moderne has a lot of Daniel in it, and Georges Perrier's bistro fare at Le Bar-Lyonnais (Philadelphia) is sublime. I know, Ducasse is not a Chef, but I was hoping for a little of ADNY's magic to filter down to this humble bistro. I have to say my one meal at Benoit wasn't as good as any I have had at DB or Le Bar-Lyonnais, but it wasn't bad.
  6. The kitchen must be rather inconsistent. I had a miserable onion soup there this past Sunday. ← I would think one needs multiple data points before saying that, especially about a nine-day-old restaurant. ← That would be two data points as I assume that robert brown knows the difference between a good onion soup and a terrible one. I do a much better job at home using canned broth, then the one I was served. I assume his was much better. On the whole, I liked Benoit, although I think I made some poor choices (onion soup, steak au poivre, and baba) and happen to hit some weak items. My wife was very happy with the salmon appetizer and cod entree. I wish I had talked her into ordering the cote de boeuf. That sounded really good. If this place was going to remain BYOB, or had a really cheap corkage, I would definitely frequent it.
  7. The kitchen must be rather inconsistent. I had a miserable onion soup there this past Sunday. Completely unseasoned, and the broth was tasteless. Not a deal breaker but it did make me realize that not everything on the menu was going to be great. My wife had the warm salmon and potato preparation for an appetizer, which was quite good. The only thing about the food that reminded me of ADNY were the home made caramels in the glass jars at the reception area. Those were great.
  8. How about B. Cafe? It is my favorite restaurant at that price point, but I hardly ever see any posts about it. It is run by the same chef that used to own "B. Frites".
  9. I do miss Sarcone's deli, Brasserie Perrier and Le Bec-Fin, but I can't say that I am willing to make a special trip from New York to eat anywhere in Philadelphia. Maybe I would if Le Bec-Fin slashed its prices by 30%. Why should we be concerned if America's fourth largest city doesn't have as good a dining scene as a city five times larger?
  10. It is unclear, but if there is no benefit, and clearly a certain level of risk to using trans fats, then why shouldn't they be banned? I think the lead paint analogy is valid. What are the benefits to trans fats, aside from not having to change the oil in the fryer so frequently? I would like to at least know whether or not they are present in my meals so I can make an informed decision. Apparently there is no acceptable level of trans fat, so yes. It is more akin to a toxin than a non-nutricious food choice. How do you feel about Olestra? Would you be comfortable consuming Olestra (another artificial fat) unknowingly?
  11. Yes, I found that rather confusing, but I ended up ordering off the prix-fixe $45 menu anyway.
  12. Trans fats are bad for you as even a cursory look through medline articles will tell you. Exactly how bad is unclear, but the science suggests they are worse than naturally occuring fat. So what is good about trans fats? I understand they make food a little cheaper, but how much cheaper?
  13. Do you mean Peacock Alley? They had a nice champagne brunch. I currently like Ulysses. $20 for the buffet and a pint. The food is surprisingly good. Last Sunday I had brunch at B. Cafe, which has better food than Balthazar, IMHO, and is certainly less expensive. The owner used to operate"B. Frites" over on west 51st. IIRC, he worked for Jeans-Georges before that.
  14. And yet the last two times I visited "DB Bistro Moderne" the couples at the adjacent tables had no idea that "DB" stood for Daniel Boulud. It wouldn't surprise me if 80% of the people dining at Perry Street have idea who JGV is and could care less.
  15. I doubt even 1% of New Yorkers know who he is.
  16. I don't think he is in any danger of that as long as he is selling the BLT brand rather than marketing himself the way Rocco did. Did working for Howard Johnson's hurt Jaques Pepin? I don't think so, but it might have if they had plastered his name and face all over the place. I don't think your average BLT customer will be aware (or care) who LT is.
  17. In my experience the staff will bully you if they think they can get away with it. I find this unacceptable in any restaurant much less one at this price point. They might as well just run the place as a private club, if you have to nearly come to blows with the host to make them honor an eight pm reservation on a prime night. Sure, they comped me a round of champagne and gave me a table next to Liz Smith, but it wasn't until they had made wait at the bar for over an hour and I told them I was leaving never to return. I was really pissed, because it was clear they were seating regulars walking in off the street. I did go back one more time, but there failure to honor a food allergy request was a deal breaker. They work fine at the better restaurants, as long as you maintain a very high standard for the regular visitor. Le Cirque failed to do that.
  18. Is Le Bernardin really better than Daniel ? I am surprised that they didn't either drop Le Bernardin to two stars, or elevate Daniel to three. I guess I should re-visit Le Bernardin if it truly belongs in the top three or four restaurants in NY.
  19. Why? You can still get the dish at Daniel, which is a MUCH better restaurant. I don't think Le Cirque has had a "four star" kitchen since Daniel Boulud left. I had similar experience to your's at Le Cirque 2000, and I have not returned.
  20. I wouldn't pay much more than Fresh Direct's $3.49/pound, since making your own is pretty easy. Dufour is good, and conveniently packaged, but costs >$8/14 oz., IIRC.
  21. I have made a hazelnut flavored ganache by infusing heavy cream with ground, toasted hazelnuts, straining out the nut powder and then making a ganache. This worked really well as a chocolate filling for my "fruit de mer".
  22. Great looking tart Fanny. I must say that I am not thrilled with Nutella as an ingredient. I think the tart would work much better if you made your own hazelnut ganache.
  23. What about DB? IMHO, it is a very good value, especially the $45 prix fixe dinner. I enjoyed the dinner I had there a few weeks ago.
  24. I use it, and I plan to buy the 2007 edition as well. It is a much more useful guide then Zagat, IMHO, because it uses real reviewers conforming to some sort of standard. Of course, the fact that the Zagat guide is free to all participants, will probably insure that I keep a copy around as well.
  25. I went to 44-1/2 (less expensive sister restaurant of 44 and X) last week after the daily show and it was pretty decent. Check out their menu on www.menupages.com.
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