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Sammy's Roumanian


Fat Guy
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They appear to start with normal chopped liver (ground broiled chicken liver, chopped hard boiled eggs, raw onion, schmaltz) but then toss it tableside with an obscene amount of carmelized (a hair's breadth away from burnt) onions, shredded radish (daikon???) and a liberal dose of golden liquid schmaltz innocently sitting atop every table like pancake syrup at an IHOP.

Rachel, what memories you awakened! Not mine own, but of tales my mother used to tell of HER parents. It could have been black radish -- my grandfather, who died long before I was born (and it's no wonder why:) used to love rye bread spread liberally with schmaltz and grated black radish, then highly salted.

Did anyone else see/hear Andre Codrescu's televised description of eating at Sammy's -- several years ago, while he was still a vegetarian? :shock::shock::blink::blink:

NICK: oh well, that's why god invented finger cots. Hope it heals quickly.

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I spent the evening at Englewood hospital ER.  Triaged for four hours waiting for six sutures.  Seems my breaking knife got in the way of my finger.

seems that was the better of the two options. company aside of course.

What a pleasant thing to say.

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The poodles will be ignoring me for several hours once I give them the bones from AHR & Jason's ribsteaks.

Rachel..... Rib bones are a no-no for dogs. Like chicken or turkey bones, they can splinter and perforate a gut.

-- Jeff

"I don't care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members." -- Groucho Marx

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Nick---So sorry about your accident. Did the knife survive?  Speedy recovery. Golf does aid  the healing process! :rolleyes:

Unfortunately I was cooking for the golf outing, not playing in it. 280ppl, double shotgun plus tennis. First groups at 7:30, second groups at 1:00. Breakfast, lunch, cocktail reception, and dinner. Ironically the outing was for Englewood Hospital. Go figure :biggrin::wink::laugh:

Nick

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The poodles will be ignoring me for several hours once I give them the bones from AHR & Jason's ribsteaks.

Rachel..... Rib bones are a no-no for dogs. Like chicken or turkey bones, they can splinter and perforate a gut.

I understand about the bones. My standard with this is to let them have them for a couple hours until they are clean and then take them away. Fortunately, my dogs listen to me when I tell them to drop things, even something as engrosing as a bone - or a mouse.

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A bizarre but immensely enjoyable evening, which is pretty much the par for eGullet events...

In a perverse impulse that could only be read as “I am happy when you are not,” I must thank Stefany for picking such a dreadful place that Wilfrid was blessed with an inspiration. Truly hilarious and a delight to read.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It occurs to me, awhile back I offered a list of three-star restaurants according to the New York Times. And on that list I did not include Sammy's. Yet as I recall hanging in Sammy's is a three-star review written by Mimi Sheraton. As she is the last New York Times critic to review Sammy's, and as Sammy's has not as far as I know undergone any of the types of changes that arguably invalidate an old review (departure of a big-name chef, critical change of ownership, change of location, etc.) would I be correct in concluding that Sammy's is a three-star restaurant?

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Steven -- My 2002 version of the NYT Guide to New York City Restaurants is at a different location, but the 2001 guide does not list Sammy's as a starred restaurant. There is an entry for Sammy's, and it has the "$$$" price rating instead of the "$25 and under" price rating. However, there are no stars next to the entry. Also, early in the guide, there is a list of all restaurants that have stars, categorized by the number of stars. That list does not contain Sammy's. :hmmm:

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Nonetheless, surely you would agree that any such list must be subordinate to whatever are the overarching criteria for generating such a list. Knowing those criteria is the only way we can check the list for errors, and the criteria are nowhere stated in the guide. Although the Times has never come right out and said it, my assumption about New York Times procedure has always been that restaurants retain their stars despite changes in reviewers provided there have been no fundamental changes in the restaurants. Thus there are scores of restaurants that owe their star ratings to Ruth Reichl and not William Grimes (or, for the time being, Eric Asimov). Frank Prial and Marian Burros have also written reviews where stars were assigned, and those stars appear to have made the list. I haven't checked, but there may be some Bryan Miller stars hanging around as well. It would seem to me that as an institutional matter the Times needs to re-review Sammy's and give it an appropriate number of stars (none!) in order to remove this particular blight on its record. Or it needs to announce an expiration date for stars in order to clarify its procedure.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Somewhat related to the above is the NYT's habit of placing what appear to be snippets of very old reviews in its City section. See today's, p. 14, "Good Eating"--seven restaurants listed, with reviews dated 1994 (2), 1997 (2). If the places haven't been reviewed since 1994 (and there's no indication they been visited recently), the restaurants shouldn't be discussed.

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I have to assume the dining section staff assembles those lists based on more current information, but it's probably not as rigorous as the actual review process.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Didn't we conclude a while back that lists of restaurants by stars are no longer available on the NYT web-site? Still, you can look 'em up individually. Sammy's currently has no star rating, although it is correctly described as "expensive". The reviewer quoted is Reichl, April 1998.

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You can still get the lists if you do the advanced search on nytoday.com. As for Sammy's, I'm fairly certain that Ruth Reichl didn't review it in 1998. I think that may be the date on which she wrote a summary for the Web site or something like that. As far as I know Mimi Sheraton's review is the last official one. This could be confirmed by someone with Lexis/Nexis or whichever service has full-text New York Times archives.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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  • 4 years later...

I had to resurrect this thread after seeing Sammy's profiled on a food show on WLIW (the one hosted by Todd English). You guys pretty much trashed this place here back in 2002. Has anyone been back since then? Is it still crap? I ask because my 87 year old Jewish grandmother still talks about schmaltz and I would love to take her to a place like this. Go, or no go?

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