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mikeyrad

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  1. the Times has never purported the two columns as mutually exclusive. nor should they be. ← If the two columns aren't mutually exclusive, then why not simply eliminate the $25 and Under column altogether? Why have two different columns if Bruni reviews restaurants that are under $25, and the $25 and Under column does the same? Maybe the $25 and Under column should review Masa.
  2. according to Eater.com, the incompetent one reviews Katz's in tomorrow's Times. Did I miss something or did the dining review merge with the $25 and Under column? If so, I may have to cancel my subscription to the Times. Jeffrey Chodorow and Keith McNally, feel free to chime in!
  3. Krug, yes; DP or Cristal, maybe not. For a lot of the Negociants, you're paying as much for marketing as for quality.
  4. I first found out about grower Champagnes at a blind Champagne tasting led by Willie Gluckstern. We must have tasted at between 50 and 100 Champagnes, from grower-producers to premium brands. I remember that many described Cristal as tasting like piss. Willie said that many in the industry have given Veuve Clicquot the nickname "agent orange". On the whole, the grower-producers fared much better than the large Négociants.
  5. JohnL, I also agree. It's a shame that the Times is digressing to a lowest common denominator approach.
  6. A few restaurant owners have told me that Bruni doesn't know squat about wines. (I'd add that he is equally as boneheaded about food.) Supposedly, someone in his inner circle does have some expertise. BTW, you can identify grower Champagnes by the RM designation somewhere on the bottle (in many cases the lower right-hand corner). They're usually of the similar or higher quality as the premium brands (Cristal or DP) at a fraction of the price.
  7. Whether or not you think that Chodorow's retort was a good idea, most would agree with his argument that Bruni is an incompetent restaurant reviewer. Unlike Grimes, it doesn't appear that Bruni has learned much about food or wine during his tenure. Either that, or he is unwilling to share that knowledge with his readers. I base this opinion on the fact that many of us have noted how little space is devoted to describing the food in comparison to describing the decor and/or everything else not remotely associated with the subject at hand. And that's too bad because unlike me, he is a wonde
  8. mikeyrad

    Varietal

    Actually, I don't think that the problem with Varietal is their concept or the ambiance. It's their prices! If they were around $22 per entree, Varietal would be a standout neighborhood type of restaurant serving very good food with a great wine selection. My guess is that the place would also be packed. However, at the $30 per entree price point it has some serious competition.
  9. mikeyrad

    Varietal

    As you said, it's just your opinion. I just described the concept as described to me by the restaurant's food and wine director.
  10. mikeyrad

    Varietal

    The problem is that he doesn't write more than a couple of paragraphs about the FOOD. He seems so much more intent to waste space describing the room or even worse, babbling on with clever, but completely unrelated prose. But this is getting into Bruniland so I'll stop.
  11. mikeyrad

    Varietal

    The point of the "starkness" (mostly white, even the bar) of the atmosphere is to enable wine drinkers to get a sense of the wines' color. I've spoken to many restaurant owners who have been reviewed by Bruni and it seems that he knows next to nothing about wine (IMHO, he knows next to nothing about food). It seems that sometimes he brings along someone who supposedly is more into wines than he is. So, given his penchant for weighting atmosphere in his reviews combined with his lack of knowledge about wine drinking and winetasting, don't be surprised if he bashes this restaurant.
  12. I was waiting on line outside of Smoke (jazz club) a few months ago and started a conversation with a man who is a partner in the Rosa chain. He explained that Rosa wholly owns the original 1st Ave location. We didn't talk about her stake in the other restaurants. But that would certainly explain the difference in quality between the original and all the other restaurants.
  13. StrongBuzz is reporting that the menu has reverted to the format from the old space. Can anyone verify?
  14. mikeyrad

    Del Posto

    what I find interesting is it seems that Bruni's major criticism of Del Posto was that the menu had too many entries. His criticism of Babbo was the rock music. It seems to me that if Del Posto simply adopted Babbo's menu, that would have done the trick.
  15. mikeyrad

    Del Posto

    oakapple, I am extremely impressed.
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