Category Archives: Deluxe & Four-Star

Time flies, things change and 211 Clover Lane stays flawless

Sooner or later, every restaurant critic – or every restaurant critic who’s paying attention, anyway – confronts a dilemma: With so many restaurants and so little time, it’s hard to get back to those reliable old favorites. Continue reading Time flies, things change and 211 Clover Lane stays flawless

Our critic can’t hate on Mesh in spite of himself

First, let’s get one thing perfectly clear: No matter how much I think I might dislike a place, I bring an open mind to the dinner table.

Sometimes this isn’t easy. Even if a restaurateur has responded to a review with veiled death threats or even mere front-yard TPing, it’s the critic’s job to swallow that bile and return someday, prepared to deal out judgment that’s honest and fair.

It’s a good thing, too, because I had a load of baggage in tow — much of it not particularly fair, but hey — when our friends Kathy and Rick joined Mary and me for a recent dinner at Mesh.
Continue reading Our critic can’t hate on Mesh in spite of himself

8UP is stunning, but how about the food?

Even after many years of wisecracking about food, I have to doff my toque to Calvin Trillin, whose culinary scribblings in The New Yorker and elsewhere surely qualify him as the funniest food writer ever.

So, upon my recent visit to 8UP, the self-described “Elevated Drinkery and Kitchen” atop the new downtown Hilton Garden Inn, it was with great glee that I went a’Googling in search of my favorite Trillin quote about rooftop eateries.
Continue reading 8UP is stunning, but how about the food?

Brasserie Provence soothes the savage critic

“Music hath charms to soothe the savage breast.” Or maybe “beast.” Everybody thinks the Bard wrote this, but it was actually William Congreve, a decidedly lesser poet who lived a century or so after Bill Shakspear trod the boards.

Whatever.

My breast was savage, and so was my beast, the other day. I was crabby. I’ll admit it. And I showed few signs of getting better. What was gnawing at my liver? Let me count the ways. (The Bard really did say that.)
Continue reading Brasserie Provence soothes the savage critic

The ordinary becomes extraordinary at Corbett’s

Who’s up for a steak dinner? A juicy, sizzling chunk of cow flesh, pink and rare, with all the trimmings?

The “steak” part of this equation is fairly easy to fill. Start talking about “all the trimmings,” though, and things get complicated. Head for an executive-style steak house, and you can get a slab of cow on your plate with no muss or fuss. Choose your own sides.
Continue reading The ordinary becomes extraordinary at Corbett’s