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Jonathan Benno's Lincoln


Chris Amirault
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Painful read. Just lazy, amateurish writing. No mention of a pastry chef? This is a serious restaurant, I assume they have a pastry program. Literally not even one dessert for the "recommended dishes"; I don't think I've ever seen that.

Anyways, there must be a few restauranteurs on the brink of opening their upscale Italian mega-eatery, shitting their pants tonight. The Italian bubble bursts like all other bubbles, who would have predicted?

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Now that would be a funny argument to make. That "extra stars for Italian" Bruni would have given them more stars then "extra stars for everyone" Sifton!

I do not think Sifton has been particularly generous with stars. Just two new restaurants have received three stars, and I think he has goose-egged places more often than Bruni did.

Bruni's ratings tracked Platt's pretty closely, so there's a good chance his review of Lincoln would have been worse.

Edited by oakapple (log)
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Now that would be a funny argument to make. That "extra stars for Italian" Bruni would have given them more stars then "extra stars for everyone" Sifton!

I do not think Sifton has been particularly generous with stars. Just two new restaurants have received three stars, and I think he has goose-egged places more often than Bruni did.

Bruni's ratings tracked Platt's pretty closely, so there's a good chance his review of Lincoln would have been worse.

True. The beef with Sifton has little to do with how "easy" he is, and much more to do with how questionable his taste and writing have been. He has both overrated and underrated undeserving restaurants during his short tenure, in my opinion and that of many other folks. In the case of Lincoln, I happen to agree with the star outcome (as do some of the other reviewers, apparently)...it's the content that I think is misguided.

Edited by LPShanet (log)
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I don't really know what to make of Platt's criticism of the prices and portion sizes. Lincoln is expensive. It is not by any stretch of the imagination the most expensive. If you're trying to order more economically, there are options like the market lunch, and actually the tasting menu is downright cheap compared to, say, Per Se. If you're looking to splurge, that option is available too. Complaints about portion size are red herrings in the context of food as creative art. Complaints about quality are of course germane, but in the context of fine-dining reviews I radically discount the qualitative opinion of anyone whose main concerns seem to be price and portion size.

My own experience at Lincoln was incredibly promising. I won't say 100% of dishes on the table were fabulous, but most of them were.

I have to agree with Fat Guy with respect to the comments about how often portion size and price factored into the review. From what I understand the NY magazine reviews aren't supposed to be a guide to eating in Manhattan on the cheap (don't they have a specific section for that?), but rather serious reviews of important restaurants. From my perspective I found the prices (with the exception of maybe the rib eye) to be consistent with other restaurants in a similar category. Also, I agree the restaurant shows tremendous promise, I really enjoyed the lasagna and was surprised at the level of criticism of it in the review, and also enjoyed the chicken main course dish. In addition to that, the cocktail I had to start the meal as well as a by-the-glass wine selection (I was with a non-drinker) were excellent.

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