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Everything posted by rich

  1. There have been several comments on the name of the new restaurant Per Se, opened in New York City by Thomas Keller. Many members have indicated "Per Se" is a horrible name for a restaurant and at least one person said they wouldn't eat there because of the name. What are some of the best and worst restaurant names? Would a name either encourage or discourage you to attend? Best - Sidebern's - Tampa, FL (very clever being next door to Bern's) Henry's End - Brooklyn, NY (evokes pity) Hemingway's - Orlando, FL (quite bohemian) The Rattlesnack Club - Dallas, TX (mystery, danger & romance) Union Pacific, NY, NY (reminiscent of train food when it was good - much like the Chattanooga Choo-Choo) Worst - El Bulli - Spain (reminds me of matadors) Victoria & Albert - Disney World (tobacco in a can) Babbo - NYC, NY (a child's bathwater) Felidia - NYC, NY (did a porno star name this?) Sweet Basil - Staten Island, NY (I like basil, but it's not sweet)
  2. Traveling to Anaheim next week for a meeting and will have time for one dinner with business associates. Can someone recommend an upscale spot? Price is not a concern, but it must have a good wine list and must be in Anaheim. Thanks.
  3. The discussion about PL has been going on for months and it's been over- played. Everyone here knows I don't think PL is as good as it once was. Yes, that's just my opinion and I know several of you will disagree - I have no problem with that. As I said, I was a huge PL admirer in the late 60's, 70's and 80's. But if PL isn't in the mix because it's located in Brooklyn and LI, then what is Manhattan's best steak house? To me, Sparks wins hands down. The steak, the atmosphere, the bar, the staff and the wine list. That's my choice. I would like to hear others - I'm sure many people have an opposing opinion about this.
  4. Parkside

    I have long stated that the best Italian restaurant in New York City is Parkside, located in the Corona section of Queens. After a six-month absence I dined at Parkside last Friday and my evaluation has changed. It's not only the best Italian in the city, it offers the best value of any restaurant in the city. Dinner for seven with everyone having an appetizer and main course, four having dessert and four bottles of wine came to $282 (before tip). For those of you who haven't had the pleasure to dine there, this isn't a red-checkered tablecloth place. It's a white table cloth restaurant with excellent service in a relatively attractive setting. There are two downstairs rooms and an upstairs room. I prefer upstairs because it's quieter but my brothers enjoy the action downstairs and since they were paying, I let the kids have their way. I started the evening with a half-dozen Blue Points and my entree was the best chicken dish in captivity - Chicken Provencal. The wines were a Kenwood Sauvignon Blanc ($16) and one on my favorite Long Island reds - 2000 Macari Cabernet Franc ($24). The Macari sells for $18 at the winery. (I was tempted to order the 1996 Silver Oak Cabernet for $110, but since I wasn't paying...). All in all, another wonderful experience at Parkside for an incredible price. Is there a reason to go to any other NYC Italian? Well, maybe Babbo just for some diversity but they don't have "family" members eating there.
  5. Le Bernardin

    Really like LB, but no one should feel honored to eat at any restaurant. As a paying customer, the honor is within the eye of the beholder.
  6. Parkside

    Went with Weinoo (and my wife and another couple) and thought there had their "A" game going last night. The soft shells were perfect and as I have said, the Chicken Provencal is the best chicken dish in captivity (IMO). We had the Two Angels Petite Sirah - at $42 a steal. All in all one of their top efforts and made better by the great company.
  7. Wine & Food Dinner

    Great five course wine & food dinner, pairing five types of meat from Lobel's with ten wines from Morrell - two for each course. Check it out - only $70 per person - incredible value. Next Wednesday 7/30 at 7:00 p.m. Rich
  8. Well, several years later this has changed. In my opinion, the best are now Wolfgang's and S&W. Sparks has fallen off the radar as far as I'm concerned. It appears to have lost ground after the expansion.
  9. Parkside

    Read this and the same is still true today. Nothing compares with Parkside. It's still the best of its type in the city. While others play with the Italian format, Parkside does the best Italian-American version. I realize now comparing it to Babbo was silly because it's an apple/orange thing. Babbo is an Italian-Batali restaurant and has no realtionship to the cooking of the Italian-American immigrant. It's only his version of what he thinks Italian food should be. So try Parkside, and take grandma, she'll love for it.
  10. Wine & Food Dinner

    Bringing back an oldie. This was a great dinner that was never replicated. The cost (even in 2003 dollars) was inexpensive. Thinking of calling both parties to suggest they bring back another version. I'm sure people here would be willing to pay $100 per for something similar. Yes?
  11. Momofuku Ko (Part 1)

    What does 2xinfinity equal?
  12. Momofuku Ko (Part 1)

    pork & beans grits cupcakes
  13. Again, possibly. I don't know anything about the women-hating angle, but the interior decorating part is fair and may have nothing to do with him being gay. He, more than any critic I recall, places a very strong emphasis on decor (lighting, music, colors, bathrooms to name a few) and ambiance. Even to the point of complaining when someone knocked over a lamp (Bouley review). So if someone said he should have been an interior decorator, can't they mean it as a non-sexual criticism? Does everything need to have a sexual overtone? I was under the impression most people got over that while in high school.
  14. Possibly, but I know male people who are interior decorators and/or women haters who are straight.
  15. I need to ask a serious question. Since I was one of two (I think H. was the other) who didn't know the Times critic was gay, nor did/do I care, how do so many people know what other people's sexual orientation is? Is there some web site that lists these things? And most importantly, why do people care what other people do in their bedrooms?
  16. It's an interesting point, but I'm not sure if there is a blue trend. I'm a big Zin fan and I enjoy all types for the specific reasons mentioned. It's the most versatile wine on the market and has the most unique and complex flavors in my opinion. So while I enjoy the blue versions, I also enjoy the classic bottlings. One of my favorite wines was the 1969 Joseph Swan Zin (and I still have one bottle that's waiting for that perfect moment).
  17. Sources tell me he's third in line behind Egan and Giuliani.
  18. Isn't that considered an oxymoron?
  19. The "controversy" was limited to an awfully small number of people. My only question for you is would you have had the same reaction if Reichl had written that review and made humorous comments (which she would have)? You'll probably say "yes"...I won't believe you. ← Nathan, I know you weren't speaking to me, but indulge my answer - I can't resist. The Times during Reichl's era would not have promoted that review as it did two months ago, because it was more of a real newspaper then. Reichl probably would have made funny comments based on her writing, but there's big difference in being funny and sophomoric - and that's what he was.
  20. I think we all agree with this part. (In fact, I think it's probably the best succinct statement of what's wrong with Frank Bruni as a restaurant reviewer that I've yet seen.) I just don't see where all the other stuff comes from. Not just your stuff, John. But everything from everybody. It's like, as far as many people here are concerned, Bruni couldn't possibly do a single thing right. His every move is apocolyptic. I mean, he rereviews a restaurant that arguably deserves a rereview: he gets slammed. He discreetly refers to his sexual orientation in a context so fraught that it would have been borderline fraud (and also astonishingly humorless) for him to omit it: he gets slammed. He reviews a chain that has been highly touted within the NYC foodie community: he gets slammed. I think all this carping diminishes the very real fundamental criticism that Bruni richly (no pun intended) deserves. ← I think I was the most critical of the Strip House and I know I wasn't crticizing him for reviewing it (and stated that many times). I was criticizing the Times for the manner in which they promoted it (and still think they were "tabloidish" about it) and him for the sophomoric/locker room humor in the review. I was very critical of the Chocolate Factory review because it didn't belong in the main dining column - and still doesn't. It was/is a waste of the precious fifty-two. Don't care what he chooses to re-review. But if he's going to re-review, have something more meaningful to say other than the word "sear." And yes, he does very little right. It's not his fault, he was just born that way (apologies to Jackie Gleason). Lastly, I don't think the "carping" (and I not sure I would use that word) diminishes the fundamental criticism. In fact, it enhances it by emphasizing his "NAC" mentality with respect to the NYC dining scene.
  21. Very true, but comparing the wisdom of McGee to that guy from the NY Times is like comparing Frank Sinatra's voice to Burl Ives'.
  22. SE, I don't recall anyone saying that. I know that was said about EMP, possibly Gilt and Gramercy (though he wasn't the last reviewer), but not about Craftsteak. Not that I recall anyway. I believe you got it half right about him - damned.
  23. I'm not saying it hasn't, but he specifically (and only) mentions the sear as being more to his liking. Then he goes on to say he still prefers a char. Are you saying that couldn't have been covered in his blog or Diner's Journal thingy? There comes a time when the excuses for him must stop. He's bad at what he does - nothing else needs to be said. And he deserves every negative comment any restauranteur throws at him - cheap or not. Afterall, he's printed enough of them during his tenure. By the way, has Chodorow visited the bald guy's Chocolate Factory yet? The Times critic is the only person who could give Chodorow a good name.
  24. Annisa deserves three stars and Anita deserves four for her food. Arguably one of the top 10 chefs in NYC. Today's reviews are worthless - he gives Craftsteak another star because he thinks the "sear" is better but the other things (including problems) are still the same. Please don't insult my intelligence!!!! Who paid who off??? I may have been born at night, but it wasn't last night. Because he and Batali are symbiotic it is required he covers all things Batali does, not matter where he does them. Given his predilection for bathrooms, Batali should make sure the stall door is always closed. Otherwise that might wind up as a review.