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Hank

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  1. To all eGullet posters Menton1 is dead wrong about Fairway of Fort Lee being an "imposter". The name Fairway has been on the store front since the early 1900's with the third generation Cafasso's now running it, well before the NY stores opened their doors. A little research would go a far way before posting mis-information.
  2. Hank, please be certain that you differentiate between your inferences and what I actually said. Never did I say, imply, or otherwise indicate that the "other problems" were necessarily dirty. There are many, many things that can contribute to a restaurant closing - all of which fall under that umbrella of "other problems." Yes, some of those reasons may be less than savory, but there are alot of them that are perfectly innocent. I simply chose not to elaborate. You ask, "how in God's name can we not infer that there is something drastically wrong with either Shelton personally or his Inn." What you choose to infer is your own domaine and no one elses. Please do not attempt to shift that responsibility to me. At this point, several things are obvious to me. First - you will not be satisfied with what I have said so far. Second - I am not going to say any more. So I would like to suggest that this particular portion of the discussion come to a gentle close. I stand by my post, along with everything that was and was not said in it. If not everyone agrees, I can certainly respect that. But a protracted volley of "you said, I said" will benefit no one. ← AMEN
  3. I totally disagree. David says in his post (please re-read it) that he has reliable info from the pastry chef who is close to the restaurant that there were other problems afoot and out of respect to Shelton's good name and rep he will not elaborate. Come on sir. He is basically telling us that he has some dirty laundry that he does not want to talk about which is ofcourse his perogotive but then why hang it out in the first place? Why didn't you or anyone else elaborate on that? And that is the primary jist of my posts. Also, there is no way that you can say that a negative comment could not hurt Shelton's career. You well know how little it takes in the restaurant business for people to stop coming to you. You want names, I've got them but certainly not in public.
  4. I honestly hope and pray that that was the reason (and a good and necessary one) to close the restaurant, BUT then why feed us the "stuff" about good name and reputation. Either David has some very wrong info which in my opinion he should not have alluded to or there is a lot more to come out of this.
  5. And how about some major fairly new restaurants in our own state of New Jersey?
  6. Hank, I'm sorry that you feel I have done a diservice to the Ryland Inn and to Chef Shelton; you are ceratinly entitled to your opinion. You ask in your first post "Am I wrong? I certainly hope so." I believe that you are. Nothing I have said (or not said, as the case may be) in any way guides the reader to one specific conclusion or another about the situation at the Inn. And while I appreciate your confidence in my ability to sway public opinion, I think you've grossly overstated my influence. People will draw myriad conclusions from my information; some will take it very seriously, some will ignore it, some will think I'm a lying SOB. Those conclusions will have myriad effects; it will lead some to flock to the Ryland Inn, it will lead some to conciously stear clear, and it will lead some to remain blissfully appathetic. I'm pretty certain that the relative percentages of each group will stay fairly consistent to the pre-closing level. Here are a couple of pieces of information about the restaurant industry that may not be widely known: (I mention these points not in specific relation to the Ryland Inn, but simply for general knowledge purposes) #1 - That a restaurant is always full and has a high check average can have very little relation to it's ability to survive. Success has alot more to do with food and labor percentages as compared to that check average than the civilian public thinks. People assume that because a restaurant is doing well that they must be making money hand-over-fist. Unfortunately that's not always the case. There are alot of other costs involved that can eat away at the profits #2 - "Water Main Break" is a long standing euphamism in the restaurant industry that is used to cover a variety of other causes for closing. ("Closed for Renovation" is another favorite) If every restaurant that claims water main problems actually had them, I'd be more concerned about the failures of our public infrastructure than of our restaurant community. That being said, there are restaurants to whom this really does occur - case in point is a well known, long famous restaurant in Manhattan that is struggling with this. A delivery driver from my company walked in one day and saw water pouring from the ceiling. So it does happen, just not as often as claimed. Let me also make clear that I did not in any way claim in the intial post that there wasn't a water main break, and I apologize if that was the implication. Rather, there are/were other problems that (when taken in combination with any infrastructure issues) led to the closing. I truly hope the Ryland Inn reopens, and I wish them all the luck and success that I can. If it doesn't, then I hope that Chef Shelton re-emerges with bigger and better projects. He has earned every well-desreved accolade that comes his way, and he is a great asset to the New Jersey dining scene. ← I appreciate your answer to my post but how in God's name can we not infer that there is something drastically wrong with either Shelton personally or his Inn when you say"more problems afoot and out of respect and to preserve the good name and reputation you will not elaborate". Sorry, but you opened the can of beans/ worms and by not letting people know of why he had to close a very fine and successful restaurant you will have to eat your words. As a chef you must very well know how even the slightest possibility of a major problem (and I assume this may be one) can destroy a restaurant and or chef. Some things are much better not said until the truth becomes public knowledge from all sides and we and Shelton can all make our own decisions. To me your original post is no more than a teaser/gossip and I am sure that Shelton does not appreciate it in the least.
  7. I am very happy to learn of the misrep. I know you long enough to know that you would never post anything hurtful about anyone as unfortunately David has done. I have been to the Ryland Inn often and they deserve better than that. If they have problems I am sure that they will work them out. Shelton is one smart dude and an excellent chef. So far this year I have been very nice and will certainly continue to be nice so that we can share one of your Turleys. Maybe at Blu which has become one of our favorite restaurants this side of the GWB.
  8. David said in his post that there were other probelms afoot and that coming from a pastry chef. So Rosie, did you "ditto" that also? It seemed that way to me.
  9. Many years ago I learned that if you don't want to spill the beans then don't remove the lid. I do believe that that is exactly what David and Rosie have done and in all fairness to the Ryland Inn they have done a huge disservice to the restaurant/owner. By their remarks they now have many people wondering and doubting what exactly is the problem. Was it a sanitation problem similar to the restaurant in NY a few weeks ago (rats) or one of a 100 other horrific reasons why a "money making" restaurant that was always packed (had to make reservations way in advance and charged quite a bit for the right to eat there) had to close. If they re-open I am certain that many people who have read these posts will think twice about going back to the Ryland Inn until they know exactly what the reason was to "preserve a name and reputation". Hopefully there is a very simple explanation for their closing but then again if that were so David would have no reason for not mentioning it. So, David and Rosie, I truly believe you have hurt the reputation of a chef rather than protecting him for whatever your personal reasons. Am I wrong? I certainly hope so.
  10. Hank

    China 46

    I must have asked Cecil a hundred times to do this and did mention it in a couple of my earlier posts. Finally, he has seen the light. I only hope that he will get more people to come without that rediculous stand at the door. Yes, the food is as good as ever but he is still very slow whenever we go there.
  11. Nish for the most sarcastic owner,chef in NYC.
  12. Hank

    Mama Mexican

    Englewood Cliffs, and about an 1/8 mile south of Palisades Ave on Route 9W.
  13. Hank

    Mama Mexican

    admin: threads merged We live within 10 minutes walking distance from this restaurant and finally decided to try it earlier this evening as after a month the rough edges should be smoothed out. My thoughts for whatever they are worth. 1) Very pricey fast food Mexicann, no more, no less. 2) Extremely noisy. (A very young crowd having a good time screaming their heads off drinking pitchers of Sangria and not caring or knowing what the food is about.)) By 7:15 an extremely loud Mexican band showed up to add to the already unbearable noise. Could not wait to leave. 3) Sangria, also a faux Mewxican rest. about a mile up on 9W closed about 5/6 weeks ago and we were hoping that we would finally get an authentic Mexican restaurant in our area as true Mexican food can be wonderful. Wrong. Think Zocalo or Maya in NYC to name just 2. 4) Service was pleasant but very amateurish. Don't greet my wife and I with: "Hi guys. What are we drinking tonight." (At 70 plus we are no longer guys.)Also, at these prices I don't want to be asked if I want my very dirty cutlery changed. To reopen old wounds and posts, why can't our area of Bergen County be blessed with serious restaurants such as what Montclair, Ridgewood, etc. have to offer.
  14. they have three cuts, per their website: porterhouse, sirloin, filet mignon. i'd be very surprised if their filet mignon is coming from a USDA Prime-graded carcass. since that grading relates to marbling, it's almost pointless anyway, as filet has very little fat. my understanding is that the filet from the best USDA Prime carcasses ends up in porterhouse steaks, where it rightfully belongs. the problem with a blanket proclamation like "all of our beef is only the finest USDA Prime" is that there's a good chance it's not true, and if it's not, people like me will point it out. ← Bravo to you Tommy. You are one of the few people that I know outside of the meat processing business that understands why there is virtually no prime fillet mignon unless you are just lucky enough to get one without anyone knowing it, including the processor. Will explain further to anyone interested but it does become a bit complicated though not too difficult to understand. Also, there is just not enough prime meat around to satisfy the many thousands of restaurants across the country that claim they only serve prime steaks. One big reason why some restaurants and butcher stores pay a high premium for true, legitimate prime meat and even then there is a high and low end.
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